Thursday, January 05, 2006

We've Been Counted


This tag was put on our door after we were counted in the Census here in San Miguel de Allende.

Some of the questions were:
How many people live in this house?
How many rooms are in this house?
What kind of floor does the house have? concrete, tile, dirt?
Do you have city water?
Do you have electricity?
Do you have plumbing?
How long have you lived here?
No questions about race or nationality.

Just before the census taker left, he said to Ned, "This is a big house for 2 people. Some houses have 20 people living in them."

I'd write about this comment but I still haven't sorted out how I feel or what I want to say. I'm afraid if I start I'd have to write a book. So many political, international, social and economic issues...........

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yeah, here in Mexico everyone is counted as just mexican. That's why it's so hard to determine the racial makeup of this country. We like to pretend we don't care about race and that we're not predjudice, but you've probably realized that is not true. But it's nice not to have to fill out your ethnicity on everything like when I'm in the states.

I've never met 20 people in one home. only 14 =) Well, actually that's how many my dad had in his family growing up.
-Rey

BillieS said...

Rey, the house next door to us here has several parts of the family who live there from time to time. I don't think I've seen 20 there either but anywhere from 10 to 15 on any given day. I think it is amazing that we never hear any arguments or fights. Everyone seems to get along.

One time in San Cristobol I saw an old chart with drawings that named every combination of race that I could imagine. I'm thinking it was Mexican but it could have been Spanish. I know that when we are in a Yucatan village, Sometimes a Mexican will point out who is Mayan and who is Mestizo. So these "labels" still must have some significance. This world is a crazy place.