Monday, December 21, 2009

Winter Solstice 2009

The Professor and I in Mexico 1997

Today is a memorable day for me. It was on this day in 1997 (12 years ago) that The Professor proposed to me in Zihuatanejo, Mexico. The name Zihuatanejo comes from the word "Cihuatlan" which means "place of women" in Nahuatl. We went there to celebrate the baptism of our dear friends' first born son and it was the beginning of a six month journey for me and my eldest son in Spanish immersion. I studied at the University IberoAmericano while we lived with my friend's family.
All of us in the Zocalo in Mexico City.

The beach of the Cats, on the other hand, owes its name to the abundance of cat sharks (an inoffensive squalus that has a moustache and no teeth) that used to live in nearby waters.

I remember how difficult it was for me at the time, being away and having to think and speak in Spanish all the time. The Professor and our friends stayed with me through New Years but then went back to the Twin Cities to resume their lives. It was hard to be away from my love as I was newly "in love". The Professor and I meet two years earlier and had been living together for a year. We had a house and a dog and a 4 year old boy. The proposal itself was a surprise but knowing that I would marry this man was not.

On a sultry morning on the 21st of December as we were getting ready to start our day, The Professor pulls me aside to a balcony off of the hotel hallway. Years later I don't remember exact words, I just remember the feeling...excitement, he pulled out a beautiful ring with a turquoise stone and a silver leaf on each side of the stone, put it on my finger and asked me to marry him. The perfect setting. Perfect timing.

My plan is to return to this place in 2010. I haven't been to Mexico since then and it is time.