I have returned to Oaxaca. The trip, while long (I was at the Sacramento airport by 5 and landed in Oaxaca at 10:30), was relaxing. From 8 in the morning until after 1 in the afternoon, I was in LAX.

For the leg of the journey from LAX to Mexico City, I sat next to a woman and her daughter (under age 5). The girl’s grandparents were in the seats on the other side of the aisle. The little girl would break into song throughout the flight. It was delightful singing, but at one point her song was a bit boisterous, and I caught a man looking back to see who was making all of the racket in the plane.

The final flight was 40 minutes. I was seated next to a young woman who, for her fiesta de quince años, was given a one-year trip to Normandy to study French. She had been there three months, but there were problems with her visa, so she as returning home to Oaxaca and would be back in France by Christmas. With every minute closer to home, she grew more excited.

Landing, I embraced all of my mixed feelings about the 40 days I have remaining on sabbatical in Oaxaca.

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