I drove to Tijuana yesterday. My mother rode with me. We went to see the woman to whom I pay rent. We went to pay my rent.
One day, perhaps, after my mother leaves this mortal life behind, I will move back to Tijuana, after the rest of the family and I get everything sorted out and settled.
For now, counting against that future (whose time still could be many years away – so healthy is my mother), well, it is worthwhile for me to continue to pay rent even though I don’t live there. It would be hard to find a place that I like as much as I like that place – you can see a video or two of it, from the days when Maria Teresa lived there – it would be hard to find such a place for the price I pay for it, or for another matter, it would be hard to find a landlady with whom I am on such good terms as I am, with the eminently reasonable, considerate, and loving, Señora E. de C.
My memory turns back to the time when Tere and I rented that place, twelve long years ago, in April 2004. At one moment, it feels like only yesterday, but then, at another, it feels almost a hundred years ago. Time is mysterious in that way, it flies and then it crawls.
When Tere moved away, after her heart attack, broken arm, and worsening diabetic crises, when she moved away to be with her large and devoted family in Nuevo Laredo, and in Texas across the river, I stepped forward and took over the rent payments in full (I had been sharing the rent with her before then). I was hoping that when she got better – if she got better – she could still have her home back here in Mexican California. But, after… after she died – a year later, much to all of our shock and disbelief – well, after that, then I decided to hang onto the place for a few months at least, and then… well, a few months have become a year, and now I just don’t want to let the place go.
The price is right, the location is right, and the landlady is a kindly, gracious, and considerate person. I could not do much better, no matter how hard I looked, and, in fact, I could do much worse. Much worse.