In Mexico, we eat ‘BANANAs’ … not dread them

by Brian Kieran

AJIJIC, JALISCO – In Campbell River on Vancouver Island, I could barely get audible cell phone reception at home. My clients and friends had to call our land line. Know why? It was because the higher purpose denizens of Willow Point could not countenance a cell tower anywhere near their precious neighbourhoods.

In Willow Point, the BANANAs (Build Absolutely Nothing Anywhere Near Anyone) ruled. These, of course, were the same people who constantly bitched to Telus and other providers that their cell reception sucked. Being a BANANA means you never have to connect the dots.

In Ajijic, our summer home in the highlands of Mexico south of Guadalajara, my cell phone reception is magnificent. When folks call me from Canada it is as if we are in the same room. Know why? Just a pitching wedge south of my veranda, just past the laden lime trees and the tile roof next door, is a splendid piece of 21st Century sculpture, a cell tower radiating energy my way.

In Willow Point, the BANANAs feared their backyard chickens (if they dared have backyard chickens) would lay eggs with no yolks. Here, in Ajijic, the roosters are all roostering at 5 a.m. and the eggs don’t glow in the dark.

I suspect when TelCel, the Mexican cell giant, opted to erect a tower in this neighbourhood it was not beset by a “No Tower Here” committee of landowners. I bet it just cut a deal with a willing landowner and went to work delivering strong signals as mandated. I know this kind of unobstructed enterprise can have unintended consequences … but I, for one, am enjoying all the little bars I never got up north.


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