Take the bus from Mexico City to Queretaro. Now, I love Mexico city, I think it’s a very beautiful city to be in. It is also a very beautiful city to leave. The central part of the city rests at the central of a bowl. Bulbous green mountains rise up at all sides to surround it. Life, in the form of tangled roads. Life, in the form of pink and blue and green apartments, in the form of taquerias and train lines and cable cars crawls relentlessly up the sides of the hills and mountains surrounding the central part of the city. The impression that Mexico city leaves you with on your way out is that the city is an organism of jaw-dropping size and complexity you or me will never, never comprehend. The city leaves you with a feeling of smallness and a feeling of oneness. A bit like looking up into the night sky. But instead of billions of burning stars, behind each light of the city is a life, a life that twists and tangles its way into all the lives adjacent to it, and to many much farther away. I was there once. I was one of those lights burning.
Now I am on a bus on the highway in central Mexico. After about an hour we are far enough away from CDMX to feel that we have left its orbit completely. But before long we are in Queretaro. Queretaro is a city with its own sweet charm. A smaller city than the monolith of Tenochtilan, but one of the most significant in Mexico. Here too, you will see colored houses snaking up hills at impossible angles. You will see the sun set against historic churches. Once you start walking the character of the place becomes more evident. The city loves museums, art and murals. Some of the main streets are straight, but others drag themselves more lazily up the sizes of hills, following the contours of the hillside. You will discover small almost hidden streets — callejones — filled with restaurants, bars, cafes. They are filled with crowds of people making a living selling pedos de monja, artesianas, and gorditas.
I sat down on a park bench en el Parque Guerrero as I waited for Gabrielle to arrive. She was late, but I hardly noticed. We said hello and she took me by the arm and went to see some of the city. A restaurant, a couple beers. She talks with her hands. She pauses and leans in when you speak. You almost stop speaking because her eyes are so bright and searching that you fear that whatever you have to say won’t be enough. You will be wrong.
We went to the theater and saw a strange and wonderful movie. I grabbed her hand. She rested her head on my shoulder. Her hand is bigger than I expected. I explore it. It is rough and I wonder what stories lie behind that roughness. We walk through los callejones de queretaro, the lights, the fountains, everyone paseando enjoying their last few hours of freedom before the Monday sun rises.
I walk her home and we kiss in the street outside her apartment. for almost two hours we are there kissing and platicando. I feel her narrow shoulders, I run my hands down her thin waist. I grab her nalguitas and her thighs. I feel her hips pressed against mine. I leave reluctantly and take a long walk home.