We have so much to do, and so many miles to travel, that sometimes it is difficult to keep up this blog, but I hereby give you a little update:
As we expected the living conditions in the migrant shelters are very basic. But still they are little oasis for migrants that travel in the train. Seeing and living that sometimes makes our demands, wishes and complaints seem silly. Often there is a silent atmosphere, there is distrust, but also laughter, jokes, musica and checkers.
The workshops are a way to make migrants feel a little bit happier. It is also an opportunity to be really together for a moment, to create a positive atmosphere. Our previous goals of conducting really artistic workshops to develop the play have become secondary. Every moment of sharing in these workshops is extremely enriching (for us as persons and artists)
the artistic aspect
In this project artistic and social goals are both important. We sometimes look for the edges, also our own limits. We might tend at sometimes towards being social workers, or sometimes towards persons that look at problems from a distance, utilizing it merely as an object to create art. At certain points they come together…
In the presentations up until now we haven´t always reached technical levels of quality we would normally aspire, but that doesn´t mean there is an artistic problem; the presence of people involved in the subject, the fact that we present it on the street, and that a police car comes by when we are acting the persecution scene; that exceeds the technical details we aren´t always able to work on.
During the trip we have met various people, who we got to know a little bit. People that participated in the workshop. Sometimes it is diffcult not to be able to help people you like, that have become friends in a short time. Not being able to give them a ride because of the rules, the laws. Or is it us. Maybe we really don´t want to help?
After a lot of heat and mosquitos, Coatzocoalcos Veracruz was a very welcoming place. The wind coming from the ocean made the heat easier than in Arriaga and Ixtepec. We started our stay in Coatzacoalcos with a press conference. The press was very interested in the project. But at some time during our stay it seemed as if the contact with the press became more important than our work itself. The workshop was great, aside from the smiles, and the moment of escaping a hard reality, this workshop was special because it took place under the bridge where migrants stay and wait for the train (and sleep) in Coatzacoalcos. The cars that came by, the cameras they all saw it; these migrants aren´t criminals (as some people think) but people with needs, as every other person. The play was beautiful: three guys that were also in the workshop participated. They were supposed to leave for Mexico City the night before, but they missed the train and thus were able to participate. The play was presented to migrants, and there was a lot of response and partcipations. It was the first time we presented for and with migrants, the audience participated actively (RUN! it´s migration). Something that bothered us a little bit, was the press that were so entusiastically taking photos the audience many times couldn´t see the images; we told them afterwards, and they understood why we were bothered. This is also a lesson for us in the future; we should tell the press where they can and where they can´t be.
Thanks to the people from the shelters in Arriaga and Ixtepec for letting us do our job.
Thanks to Diana from Comedor Casa de María for receiving us, and to doña María for the great food.
Thanks to the ladies from La Patrona in Córdoba for receiving us too. We are in Córdoba right now, and had the opportunity to talk to them and share our work. They do great work here, giving food to migrants on the train, they deserve everyone´s support, so if you can, please do.
Greetings, also from the other travelers,