Awakening to Humanity

Awakening to Humanity
July 19, 2009 Lainie Liberti

Unexpected love

Another beautiful morning in Cozumel, slept in a hammock last night, looking forward to the only day on the island w/o cruise ships docking. 7:39 AM Jul 19th, 2009 via Twittelator

This island is inviting and friendly for the most part, except for the intersection between gringos and their almighty dollar. Cozumel’s main economy is based off of the tourism dollar. Massive cruise ships sail in, dock, followed by hundreds of “Cruisers” disembarking littering the seashore with their colorful clothing and loud voices for just a few hours. Vistors from the ships sample the island for a half day, experience a fractured reality, fill up with margaritas and nachos then set out to buy colorful plastic key chains shaped like monkeys, coconuts and palm trees. The“Cruisers” are not granted humanity by the locals, rather are viewed as bread and butter that equate to  a few needed pesos in their local pockets.  Here, people see  people not as people, rather as profit. Guess that’s not a new concept but having the opportunity to observe it from an outsiders perspective is pretty interesting.

It was a beautiful hot evening on the island of Cozumel in Mexico. Miro and I were walking from the little studio apartment we were staying at which was tucked deep into the local residential area, just outside the tourist zone. As Miro and I walked through the tiny streets lined with houses that shared common walls. We were entranced with different facades on each of the dwellings, sounds of music coming through the doors and movement of adults and children alike as evenings clearly indicated it was a time for family. The open doors invited us to experience the scents of that evening’s meal and offered a glimpse into the lives of it’s inhabitants. We saw people sitting on hammocks in their living rooms, watching TVs , children playing jacks on the stoop, and teenagers chatting on the phone.

We come upon a small gated porch as the front entrance to one of the house. It was no more than 2 feet deep and no wider than 6 feet. In the center of the porch was an alter with burning candles, personal trinkets and old photographs of an woman in varying stages of her life. Miro and I stopped to look at the alter. I told him this must be an honoring for a person who must have recently died. Then from the dark corner of the patio, a man stood up and grabbed my hand with immediacy, with his frail wrinkled hand.

He looked so deep into my eyes, he touched my soul.

We held hands for a very long moment, our eyes locked on each others. I felt in love for that moment. I experienced a deep, un-needing love full of gratitude which warmed my body, warmed my heart.

We kept our gaze on each other and for that space of time, we authentically connected in a moment of true humanity.


I fell in love.

Rather I felt love for another human being without needing anything, without expectations, without a story. I felt love in an instant, for an instant and it was pure, exceptional love that is easily accessible but apparently I don’t access all that often. But it was there, on the surface, open and joyful.

It was a powerful experience, one I will never forget.


  1. Bubba Davis Aragon 14 years ago

    Wow LOVE LOVE IT!!

  2. Sherry Luce 14 years ago

    Wow Lainie…very cool. A priceless moment. THANKS FOR SHARINGnSherry

    • Author
      ilainie 14 years ago

      Thank you so much for commenting. I agree, Sherry, the moment was so profound. I can recall the experience like it was yesterday. Such a gift, indeed. Happy holidays to you!

  3. Sddiver 13 years ago

    Love your Blog and this story….wish I could write like you to describe life’s moments like that!!

    • Author
      ilainie 12 years ago

      Ah, that is the sweetest comment, ever! Thank you!

  4. Katherine Brown 13 years ago

    This is profoundly touching!

  5. danielle hatfield 12 years ago

    So lucky to have visited Cozumel with Bradon. Sadly we were one of the “meals” but we broke out of the tourist trap like corral and took the leisurely 3 mile walk to down town Cozumel before heading to the Carlos & Charlies on the Beach . . . We had the most amazing time meeting people along the way and the most memorable place for me was a once opulent hotel entrance that was decimated by a storm – we took pictures instead of small plastic bits and pieces of lives lived a world away that took residence where vacationers once stayed.

    • Author
      ilainie 12 years ago

      No judgement Danielle, and each experience is precious. Much love to you this holiday season and a happy 2012!

  6. 12 years ago

    What a beautiful story! Thank you for sharing it. 

    • Author
      ilainie 12 years ago

      Thank you for the comment. So happy this story touched you too!

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