Friday, September 12, 2008

Peliculas y mas

So I actually ended up satisfying my movie craving...sort of. On Wednesdays movies are cheaper here - 32 pesos, or about 3.20 in US dollars. Pickings were slim, so we went with a heist movie. Chris likes heist movies. This one was called El Robo del Siglo (en ingles released as The Bank Job), which apparently was based on a true story about the 1971 robbery of a bank on Baker Street in London. Who knew?

El Robo del Siglo turned out to be both less and more than we thought it would be. Less: Chris didn´t care for the gratuitous flaunting of 1970s London´s seedy underbelly. I suppose if you are going to make a movie about the seedy underbelly of 1970s London, you have to show some of said seedy underbelly, but... it was a bit much. More: When the movie was over, for about 10 seconds I honestly did not know where I was. The movie was in English with Spanish subtitles, but the English was British because of the London setting. So you spend two hours in London, then the lights come on, and you´re back home. Or, wait, no...we´re not home, exactly, we´re in...oh right, Mexico, I think, in the land of Espanol, not British-English, and suddenly there is a different language being spoken everywhere. It´s just a weird topsy-turvy feeling is all I´m saying.

And if that wasn´t enough: On Thursday night there was a special one-day promotion at the movie theatre: 1o pesos (about 1 US dollar) per movie, except all movies being shown that day were Mexican-made. There were a few of these that looked interesting to us, but there was one we had been wanting to see for awhile: La Misma Luna, released in the U.S. as Under the Same Moon. It´s about a Mexican mom working (undocumentedly) in the Los Angeles to send money back to her nine-year-old son still living in Mexico when her son decides he is going to go and cross to el otro lado (the other side) to find her. Naturally he encounters many adventures on his journey, and one of the best things about the way the film portrays his adventures is that they are (1) filled with many of the typical life-threatening dangers migrants face when they cross the border but also somehow (2) filled with much humour and hilarity and companionship and, well, life. Life in the midst of threatening death... In the tradition of Chicago-based TV movie reviewers, Chris and I give La Misma Luna/Under the Same Moon two enthusiastic thumbs up.

And speaking of companionship and life, the companionship of life here in our Lutheran Center community is beginning to come together, too. Recently, and somewhat involuntarily, I´ve been thinking about life as this long journey, a long journey in which different companions join you for different stages of the trip, different legs of the tour, as it were. I don´t know where I came up with this image, but it keeps coming back to me.

As for us, we have many companions with whom we shared paths in the past and who continue to be a part of our lives from afar, through email or telephone or even just the many memories we share...

And then there are the currently physically present companions, those with whom we find ourselves living in community these days. These are new companions. And making new companions can be hard...especially for a cautious, often introverted, and very slow friend-maker like me.

I wonder whether this will be a pattern for my whole life, this repeated process of making and re-making friends, of building and re-building communities, of having to receive the gift of companionship over and over again. I wonder if my seminary colleagues are going through this process right now, in their own way, in all the different places they find themselves this year.

As for me, I began to feel the first stirrings of community only this week, and really only at the end of this week, when we gathered for the week-closing worship time. We sang a few songs, heard the Gospel and reflected upon it, broke a tortilla and poured some wine, and shared God's grace and peace in closing. It is a strange thing, this ritual we return to again and again, and yet there is power there, somehow. It is a power that moves among us and within us when we least expect it.

I have missed that power - missed seeing it though it has surely been here - for much of the time we have been here, so far from home. But it is beginning to come back. It must.

No comments: