January 21, 1999
Today, Kavitha and Abeja came over to my Mexican home away from home. Iım staying with Jorge and Tita Nevarez and their daughter, Alejandra. Jorge and Tita are friends of my parents' from graduate school. Alejandra is a college freshman studying literature. (At the moment, she's reading The Iliad, which is the precursor to which book? Hint: the World Trek shares the same title...)
Familia Nevarez live in a quiet, gated neighborhood called Fuentes del Pedregal. Three big office buildings flank the entrance. Our host mama says that every telenovela (Spanish for "little television novel" or better known as SOAP OPERA!), films their office scenes here. And sure enough, when we came back from changing money, we saw big yellow trailers, cameras, actors, and flocks of excited children on the set of Sonadores, a telenovela on every evening at 7pm.
Abeja asked three girls from a nearby elementary school what was going on in the story. Luis, who gave us a scene-by-scene explanation, said that Anna and Gerardo were in a fight. Chica 1 and Chica 2 (Girl 1 and Girl 2), in the boots, short skirts, and heavy makeup, join the fight. (I'll leave the rest up to your imaginations.) During the scenes the actors scream and shout, but between takes itıs all smiles and autograph signing.
Before every take, workers on the set quiet the crowds of onlookers and make sure everything's in place. The director yells, "Listo!", Ready!, counts down: "Tres...dos...uno..." and then rolls the cameras.
At one point, Kavitha and Abeja walked off towards the commercial center nearby, and the cameraman had to stop the shoot and wait for them to get out of the scene! They could have been stars...
A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to Mexico City
Kidz in La Paz
Mexico City - Then and Now
Plaza of Three Cultures, Much Pain
Mamá Rumba - The Next Best Thing
Tacos al pastor, por favor
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