Regarding the cameras, the one called 1) Jardin (garden) is looking at the green gate on the left. Up a little higher on the left is the door to C’s house. Sometime you may see someone lower a little basket on a string or the just the key, when someone wants to get in. Someday you’ll see a bent white-haired women come out or go into that door. She is B and must have been a great beauty when she was young. I think she’s about 78. We don’t really know the people who come and go from the green gate just below. Right across from C’s door is our garden gate. Higher up, above the green gate is where
Camera 2) “Christina” is located. It looks down the steps from about the level of our garden gate. Our wall on the left stops at some corrugated roof overhang. That is P’s house. She and her son clean, water our plants, and watch over us and our house. They are 110% reliable. On the lower right, you see a white jar cap and the jar beneath it. The bottom has been cut off and it serves to shield a light bulb. The pole next to it is the street lamp. When the latter’s bulb fails, the people behind the green gate turn on the jar light street lamp. On the right a little lower is a vacant lot. At the lower end of the vacant lot is where we were mugged. We are now recovered from that event, although I still carry pepper spray whenever I step out of the house, and we use a bodyguard or taxi to return home at night. The taxi drops us off a S’s store two blocks higher up. Our bodyguard M brings us to our garden gate just above the mugging site.
Camera 3) “Frente” (front) is mounted on the front of our house, upper end, just to the left and above our front door. The door to the left is R’s little tienda (store). During the attack on the police, the latter fled into her tienda, although they were armed. Human rights laws do not permit police firing at attacking youth. To the right of her door, on the left, you see her altar, which is lit up at night. There is a doll-like virgin inside dressed like Marie Antoinette. The blue house on the upper left is where M lives. He is D’s best customer for her children’s books lending enterprise. I pump up soccer balls for him. You will see him hanging out a lot the this area. His parents or parental figures neglect him almost entirely. He is eight or nine. D is like his aunt. You will see some of the gangbangers hanging out here too. They usually wear white baseball caps and white baseball shirts. You may see them selling drugs. When they are high on paint thinner and other stuff, they stagger around with jerky-jivy movements.
Camera 4) Tienda” (store) is mounted on R’s store, to the right of her door. It shows our front door on the green-gray wall on the right. On that wall, you can see a French cave horse and an antelope which I drew in chalk, along with M and his friend J, in a demonstration of mural drawing. In a recent confrontation with the gang mothers (molls), one of them pointed to my animals and said, “Look, you make graffiti, too.” Beyond our door, there is a slight overhang separating the wall from the old rock wall below. At the end of that, C and A’s house begins. C and D form the Nr. 2 Women’s Detective Agency. Because they don’t like to walk up the alley in front of their door when the gangbangers and their friends are out drinking and acting out, we have cut a hole between their roof and our terrace. They now have a key to our garden gate across from C’s door visible in camera 2) and can pass through our garden, climb the steps to our terrace, step through the new gap in the wall and reach their azotea (roof), from which stairs lead down into their house.
I hope that helps those of you who are watching from thousands of miles away. We have not heard anything from the police about any of the events. I read a graph recently showing that 25% of crimes are reported and 2% are prosecuted in Mexico. Very, very few result in convictions—the theory being that this kind of impunity has led to a great rise in delinquency.