- Personal Stories & Opinions>
- “It Happens to Us Latinos Also”
About 5 or so months ago, I got talking with a young Mexican guy in his mid 20s that I happened to just meet.
He was living in the same apartment building as I was during that time as I had just moved in.
Anyway, his name was Vicente and he was a young guy from somewhere in the northern part of Mexico.
Maybe Monterrey? I forgot.
But anyway, he was a pretty cool dude.
We got talking a bit about life in Mexico as he was curious about what I was doing.
Before doing so, we decided though to get some liquor.
Originally, we were going to get some combo package they had at the OXXO but the deal ran out.
If I remember right, it was some type of rum and coca cola or something like that.
Anyway, since they didn’t have the special promotion anymore, I recommended we get Oso Negro.
Now, keep in mind, Oso Negro isn’t as popular with every Mexican.
This guy was maybe more in the upper class of Mexican society or at least he came across like he was comfortable.
Sometimes then Oso Negro is looked down upon due to how cheap it is.
About a 5 dollar bottle of vodka!
Well, we got it anyway.
And mixed it with black tea.
Now, keep in mind, everybody hates me black tea and vodka combination.
Never met a single person who likes it.
Not sure why.
It is fairly bitter though.
But usually when I recommend someone try it, they usually go “oh si si…me gusta…”
Though they always have a face of disgust and horror that looks like they just had a sip of literal dog piss.
I like it anyway.
At least they are usually nice enough to pretend like they like it.
Anyhow, we had a little party going on at the same time with other neighbours on the balcony having a good time.
Roll the click a bit and we got talking then about my time in Mexico.
As I said, he was quite curious about what I was doing here.
That’s another point all together – sometimes the locals can seem stunned that you live here.
Some just can’t believe it.
With a mindset that everyone who stops by has to be a tourist.
“Who the fuck would move from the US to this country?” is the thought process I believe.
Anyway, he asked other questions like what do I and dislike about Mexico…
Now when it comes to this question…
“What do I like?”
Usually I bullshit people when they are a local.
I’ve learned not to say “it’s super cheap to live here!”
As sometimes the local will take that wrong way for obvious reasons.
Since it might not be so cheap for them.
Anyway, as the conversation carried on about my life in Mexico, I did become more honest with the guy.
He seemed like a chill guy who you could be real with.
And so when asked “what do I not like about Mexico?”
Well, by this point, I felt being a little more real with him.
“Crime & Corruption”
This is where a main point of the story comes from.
As I explained to him about the one time I got robbed by the police near Cuatro Caminos of Mexico City as you can read here.
To how some random homeless dude tried assaulting me as you can read here.
And just about everything else…
With the feeling like an outsider and the gringo price effect as you can read here also.
In short, I focused more on the negative effects of being the outsider in Mexico.
Of how it seems like some of the locals strive to fuck over foreigners just because.
Like when you get a taxi and they try to fuck you over by charging double the normal price.
The usual complaints that any gringo would complain about when it comes to living in Mexico.
With a general focus, as I said, on how sometimes it feels like locals try to fuck over the foreigners.
And, in a way, some of them do.
They see a gringo and some have dollar signs in their eyes.
You walk in a tourist area and some street hustler starts harassing you in broken English.
Maybe the cop signals you out like in this story here below of a few gringos who got fucked over.
At any rate, all of that is true obviously.
And it comes with the territory of living down here.
So while Vicente had no disagreement with any of that and found some of my stories interesting.
He did want to bring some nuance to it also.
Something that I feel plenty of foreigners don’t realize.
It’s not a justification for the shitty behaviour mentioned above.
But Vicente responded “It’s true everything you are saying. Shit happens here for sure. But it happens to us locals also.”
Which is ultimately what I feel some foreigners don’t realize.
When they complain about life down here with all of its negatives.
Something they might not come to realize..
Living nicely in their nice apartments in Roma Norte or Polanco…
Or whatever nice area of town.
Never leaving the Gringo Bubble.
And living a relatively sheltered life in Latin America…
But having a limited experience with the locals themselves.
Subsequently, as they live a sheltered life, they might become a little bit jaded over time.
Especially as those negative experiences from above add up.
As a result, it’s not too uncommon for the foreigner to essentially try to blame those negative experiences on all of the locals.
With thoughts like “fuck these people. They all want to fuck me over.”
And while plenty of the locals do take advantage of foreigners when the opportunity presents itself…
And also happen to be victims of the same crimes or scams that are targeted at gringos as well.
Though perhaps targeted in their own way as I imagine living down here as a local is obviously a different experience than being a foreigner.
Which is an experience I can’t comment on since I’m not a local obviously.
Nonetheless, all of this is to just add a little bit of nuance to that thought process from above about how “they all want to fuck me over.”
Obviously not all of them do.
And just keep in mind that it isn’t just you who is targeted but also many of the locals fall for scams and bullshit also.
At any rate, that’s all I got to say.
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Thanks for reading.