Have you ever wanted to "escape it all?"
Whatever that means to you.
In thinking about this subject, I've realized that sentence definitely has different meanings depending on the gringo who answers.
The one who got divorce raped and seeks younger women abroad.
Perhaps escaping the pain of a difficult romantic life back home.
Or the gringo who needs to escape unfavorable working conditions back home.
Perhaps a gringo who simply needs to escape to find spontaneity in life.
Take that convertible and drive down with the wind blowing through your hair to the beaches of Colombia where hot Latina gals wait for you with bottles of aguardiente.
And those who are looking to escape something a little bit deeper.
For the deeper reasons, those include, at least from my observations of other gringos, a desire to escape greater political changes on a societal scale.
Of which I've seen plenty of guys on Twitter talk about "escaping" to some part of Latin America to get away from Covid restrictions.
Or, on the flip side, said gringo, once in a blue moon, might simply be looking to escape depression or something along that nature tied to something in his private life back home.
Whatever your motivation to "escape it all" might be though...
For a lot of these gringos, the usual starting point is your x Latin capital here!
Be it Mexico City, Havana or wherever else!
However, the occasional one might have spent enough time in those areas.
And contemplate something more rural eventually.
Perhaps a life in El Chaco in Paraguay as a farmer?
A fisherman by Puerto Williams, Chile?
A drunken painter in Copacabana, Bolivia?
The next Great American author living by a small town of Rio Orinoco of Venezuela?
An aspiring hip hop artist free styling in Tzotzil of a rural, indigenous village of Chiapas, Mexico?
Or perhaps an underground radio personality for revolutionary groups in rural Costa Rica working to bring freedom against the New World Order?
Whatever your heart desires!
And, to be fair, it doesn't necessarily have to be a relatively more rural or small town area.
You could be isolated and tucked away in some shitty neighborhood of a city.
But it's all the same -- escape from whatever into wherever you feel best provides the medicine.
All the while, you drink yourself a little bit silly.
Slowly driving yourself into madness.
Disconnected from the outside world.
For all you know, World War 3 is happening between the US and China but you are so away from it all that it doesn't even come to your attention.
After all, who would notice World War 3 when busy raising a Catholic family of 20 children and a loving wife in a rural village of El Chaco?
We all have our reasons for wanting to "escape from it all" anyhow.
And believe me in saying that I've considered it casually while drunk one too many nights.
Thinking to myself that "nobody would notice" if I slipped away into some small town of Hidalgo, Mexico.
Ended all communication with the few connections I have back home.
Would anybody care if I disappeared?
Though it's a misguided thought, I've sometimes thought no.
That nobody would really care.
And I'd spend my days with a mentally disabled Mexican wife who stands at 5 feet tall, has a missing left eye, only speaks Nahua but is all around a very humble and caring woman.
Plus, she cooks really nice enchiladas.
I could sit on the balcony all day of my new home, smoke a Nicaraguan cigar and aspire to my own desires in anonymity.
Find my own little "village by the sea."
With music like this playing all day and night.
Kumbias Para El Barrio
Write up the next Great American novel.
And various other written publications that gain international attention.
And slowly going half blind after one too much Tonayan to drink.
Before ultimately pulling a ol' Kerouac.
Stumbling into the bathroom to vomit a bit of blood after having put more words on paper.
Only to have my mentally disabled Mexican amor yell out in agony at the sight of me dying from cirrhosis in the bathroom.
To which she yells out sobbing "who will teach me English now?!?!"
With the depressed spirit of my deceased body being lifted into the heavens to the tune of this song below where I continue my literary endeavors from the cosmos.
Still, while one dreams of escaping to some obscure part of Latin America for whatever reason...
In this case, an escapism that idealizes a simple life perfecting whatever art (writing, painting, etc) until an untimely demise
It's not something that is always as ideal as it might seem depending on the context.
A Depressed Canadian in Asia
There was a chick I met some odd years ago in Mexico City.
Some Canadian chick from Quebec area who just happened to be in Mexico City for a brief period.
She was maybe 10 years older than me at most?
And, despite being in Mexico City, she actually lived full time in some Asian country.
I forgot the country where she lived though but an expat for Asia nonetheless.
Her name was Chloe.
Petite white chick with brown hair that goes to her shoulders.
Met her at some "foreigners in Mexico City" event that I saw on Facebook.
When we met, she seemed good spirited.
And we stayed in touch minimally on social media as we both found commonality in being involved in "porn work" in our own respective capacities.
Her being an actual cam model and me being someone who makes affiliate money from the industry.
But, since that day, we never saw each other again.
From what I remember, she posted something on Twitter about a year ago roughly.
A picture of her in the hospital after some suicide attempt.
And some long description explaining her mental struggle in life.
Mostly dealing with sexual abuse.
In which she has "tried to be happy" with her life abroad away from home.
Which, as a side point, a darker past like that isn't entirely unusual among people who do porn.
And it's a question -- does she live in her own El Chaco then?
Some part of the world -- rural or urban -- wheres she has isolated herself?
Mental health deteriorated.
Maybe pursuing some passion of some kind.
I know she likes photography.
That's her passion.
But, from what one could imagine, seemingly very alone in the world.
Or at least that was one thing she mentioned was how alone she felt in life.
Because you don't have to live in an area as rural as El Chaco to be alone from others.
You could be very much alone in many respects while living in a very urbanized area like Mexico City.
Or, when speaking of Asia, perhaps Tokyo or somewhere like that.
And seeing that update on Twitter over a year ago did leave me wondering "just how alone am I?"
Because, being honest, I have my days where I feel very alone at times.
With a bottle of brandy in hand.
Thinking of alternatives.
"Take Me Home"
While I have had my own considerations for pursuing a life mentioned above...
Vanish into Tepito of Mexico City or an indigenous village of Nayarit where I descend into madness "off the radar" of everyone while I pursue some passion that'll only be recognized as the diamond it was years afterwards.
Be the Syd Floyd of Latin America, so to speak.
Shine on You Crazy Diamond
In contrast, I've also sometimes fantasized the idea of going back to the US and living a normal life.
And I know another American just like that!
Some dude named Blayde who had his fun in Mexico and is thinking of going back home as he almost hits 30.
Misses his family and all that.
Has a place in his heart for West Virginia.
Take Me Home, Country Roads -- John Denver
And, similar to me, he also enjoys the idea of being "escaping" but in his own way.
As I said, the phrase "escape it all" can mean something different to every gringo.
To him, it means more "going off the grid" out of a distrust for larger institutions in society.
Where he plans to have his own farm someday and not be as (ideally not at all) dependent on others for the basic necessities of life.
Though it doesn't have to be West Virginia -- he has contemplated staying in Mexico for the same purpose.
Primarily because his perception that the US is too "authoritarian" with Covid regulations.
Reminds me of this video here about "going off the grid" and Americans escaping to Mexico for the exact same reasoning regarding Covid regulations.
Martin Goldberg -- We're all Illegals Now
Regardless, it's still a possibility that he'll go back to West Virginia as he misses "a normal life back home" as he puts it.
Though I think that's a difference between Blayde and I.
I'm more comfortable being alone and far away from family than he is.
In reflection, I think my family has always been a little more "isolated" from each other growing up, if that makes sense?
Where everyone doesn't speak to each other as often.
I don't remember, for example, my grandpa on either side of the family (though one of them died when I was young).
On my dad's side, I barely knew anyone.
On my mom's side, I only saw anyone else about two days out of the year.
And, not to get much more personal, but there were "weird" things in the family that I rarely mention on this blog that did push me away from Iowa to a degree.
So when, on my last birthday as you can read here, a chick named Jovi asked me if "I miss home?"
It's a weird question for me.
It gets asked every once in a blue moon by someone I meet when they realize how long I've lived abroad.
And I know the answer I'll give might seem strange to those who ask.
But I said no -- I don't miss home.
I like to visit home but only for a few weeks at a time.
Not much more at all or else tensions ensure.
Maybe an argument or something breaks out.
Above all, I feel my family is much more "disconnected" from each other and so maybe it's easier to not feel like I miss it as much back home?
I think I've grown so accustomed to be "by myself" for a long time that it makes it much easier, on a day to day basis, to be alone.
Life as a Iowan Farmer
Still, there's a part that hits deep in the heart that really makes me miss home a lot much more than I could ever let on.
But I think you could substitute "home" for "normalcy."
Whatever home looks like.
That's maybe why the last song above hits harder than others.
Thus, I very much get the appeal of Blayde's idea to find home again.
There's a part of me that almost craves a more normal life of just chilling in Iowa being a farmer or some shit.
And it doesn't have to be Iowa specifically.
The exact location doesn't matter.
It's more of a feeling.
Where I go outside to get that corn ready!
Pick some tomatoes over here and there.
Fuck my mentally disabled Mexican wife among all the crops.
Before hanging with the boys by our monster trucks having a few beers listening to Johnny Cash while fishing too.
In the morning afterwards, I'll wake up at 5 AM.
My kids will be standing by some small tree that we just planted before they run off to elementary school that's just down the street.
When they get home, maybe they'll play on the N64.
The wife will be cooking some chicken and rice.
All the while complaining to me about some neighborhood bully that picks on our 7th child.
But I already told her that I solved the problem as you can see here.
Bad Santa Beat Bully Clip
And then the food is ready.
We all sit down and have a nice dinner together as a happy family.
The household cats keep rubbing against our legs to ask for some chicken.
Maybe they get a few pieces?
In which we finish our meal and head out to some baseball game in town to finish the night.
But is being the Iowan farmer that I always dreamed of being since 1967 actually a path to being happier?
Shattering the Iowan Farmer Lifestyle
Sometimes, we associate alternative lifestyles with being happier.
The same way that a gringo might associate a life abroad as a way to finding happiness when he's a bit unrealistic.
Like one who maybe thinks he'll find a young 20 year old Colombian gal to marry and love him when he's 60.
Similarly, when I'm bored, I sometimes wonder if "the grass is greener on the other side?"
That being those times I think of an alternative life being an Iowan farmer.
Well, my sister knows of a farmer from Iowa!
A guy named Nate.
Nate being some random dude who married a friend of my sister.
But, according to my sister, he has not always been happy despite living the life that I’ve contemplated when drunk with brandy watching Field of Dreams.
Being a farmer himself with a family and married to a chick named Hannah.
Nate wanted to travel the world though before having a family (to Germany specifically).
Hannah threw at him the “I’m on the pill” theory.
Just a theory….
Then Nate had child support.
No Germany for Nate!
And he tried to make it work with Hannah.
Does he make it work?
I don’t remember asking if they are still together.
Still, he did try to make it work with her assumingly…
He ended up having 3 kids with her apparently.
And when my sister said that, I said right away “isn’t that nice?”
In theory, a loving family.
Just like in Field of Dreams.
But, according to my sister, the real world isn’t like the movies.
Nate isn’t happy.
God damn it.
And, uh, well I don’t know if they are still together.
But literally the thing I have romantizied for the last few months – be an Iowa farmer – is down the drain!
Nate isn't happy while married. Wanted to do more cool things in life beforehand.
It's a lot more work being a farmer than what I would like to engage in.
And you have to live in a rural town that probably wouldn't make me happy.
In the same way that, if I were to move to Hidalgo or Paraguay, it'd probably be Pachuca or Asuncion instead of a small town because I feel more comfortable in big cities.
I guess it’s not a cool life like I thought, huh?
Still, in my days drinking myself silly, I’ve idealized both alternatives as I've said.
Be it becoming the Iowan farmer with a happy family and "normalcy."
Who drops his kids off at school.
Provides them a solid life.
Fucks his mentally disabled Mexican wife.
And all around has a happy life in peace, love and harmony.
To life of more isolation in some small part of El Chaco as some infamous writer.
Putting words on paper with the Doomer playlists of depressing jazz music in a small bar.
In which I'll go down as one of the great authors since the Depression era.
With maybe another slutty gal of the night who'll go home with me and leave me wondering the morning afterwards "why does it burn when I piss?"
And who, despite the chicas, has secluded himself after gaining notoriety.
Field of Dreams -- Terrance Mann
In the end though, you can easily see how it’s just an imagined reality.
Imagined realities on both ends of the spectrum.
Could become realities but stay in the imagination (to a degree).
Both of which made out of complete boredom with too much time on your hands and too many brandy bottles of El Presidente.
But both offer a contrast as I said they are on opposite ends of the spectrum.
The Duality of Heaven & Hell
It's a contrast.
Accept a descent into madness in El Chaco or find your own happy life in Iowa.
One in which you entertain the more negative thoughts in a depressed mood trying to paint it somehow in a more colorful light.
And the other dreaming of finding happiness.
The specifics don't matter though actually as I said before.
Either life could be had anywhere in the world.
Why not merge the two?
Be a Iowa farmer in El Chaco.
True happiness there.
But, in all seriousness, we all have our own reasons for "escape" as I said before.
Chloe had hers but did she really escape if she ended up in a hospital in Asia?
And would one really escape if he's stuck in Iowa as a farmer with a wife that maybe he isn't at all happy with?
Despite their marriage status, there are plenty of married people who are miserable with a feeling of entrapment but yet they thought that marriage or bringing kids into this world would fix their relationship and/or make them happier.
Only to find out that the grass isn't as green on the other side after having already committed quite deeply.
Though the need to "escape" for more material reasons like escaping Covid regulations or "going off the grid" are a bit different in nature though.
Those aren't very spiritual though.
It's those who are escaping for more spiritual reasons that should consider what else they might need beyond changing locations and lifestyle to find heaven.
And heaven does sound nice too.
Healthier than allowing yourself to descend into madness alone and isolated.
My own little Arauanda.
And so whatever your reason for "escape" that might be.
Perhaps for romance, financials, politics or miscellaneous personal reasons...
It should always be understood to never be naive.
But a change of location can absolutely help.
A solid start to a better life.
It helped me.
But when you do change locations, you still have to put in the physical labor to construct your own wooden cabin.
Without the cabin in your new location, you'll be left to the elements of the wilderness.
Cold during the freezing winds of night.
Unbearable heat during the afternoon.
Without a firm cabin
Without more solid mental health.
You aren't going to find happiness by simply changing locations.
Though a cabin in the moderate elements of the Coffee Triangle of Colombia will always serve you better than the harsh elements of Siberia.
Still need a cabin for either one though if you want your own heaven.
A change of locations is only one piece of the plan (but an important one) for having a nice life in that cabin.
Thanks for reading.