Invaluable “Distance Learning”

San Jose del Cabo Jesuit Mission (rebuilt!)

Passion and knowledge, a dash of humor and charm, make the perfect tour guide. That’s what Vicent brought to us last night when we walked downtown SanJosé del Cabo on the Historical Tour offered by Cabo City Tours.

I was sold when I read the brochure that claimed that money from tours helps sponsor the education of school groups about the proud history of this area at the tip of California Baja del Sur. As a part of my education,Vincent explained that too many of the children who live here know very little about this area’s history, and he is one of the most ardent working to change that. They are part of the 75% who are from the mainland of Mexico. Even the natives, not to be confused with the Pericues who did not survive the Spanish arrival and conquest, lack a comprehensive understanding of Los Cabos’ story.

Vincent shared this story with all the details that capture one’s attention and enthusiasm. I learned that this part of Mexico once included California, that the name California came from Cortez and his appraisal of its “naked–except for the pearls they wore”–beautiful women, and the story of Queen Califia.

I learned about the Jesuits and the Pericues, their complicated relationship. And that when the Jesuits left, they unlike the wealthy Spaniards in other areas, gifted the land to the poor Andalusian workers who had helped them conquer the land and the people. From this gift arose the generosity of spirit and equality paramount to the forefathers of this place.

Thanks to Vincent, I will be following the progress he and his fellow council members make in deterring Canadian mining interests from doing their damage to the precious water resources upon which Los Cabos, and the future, depends. Viva la lucha!

I walked away from our small, engaged group—and Vincent—reluctantly, now tied to a place that, as a tourist, seldom happens. I owe this bond and appreciation to Vincent.

Muchas gracias y buena suerte en el futuro.

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