Zombies on the Streets of Ajijic Mexico
In the mountain village of Ajijic, Lake Chapala, south of Guadalajara, grotesque-looking individuals dressed in blood-stained rags staggered with exaggerated, jerky body movements, down the village cobblestone streets, converging on the Malecon. The Zombies were back.
At the end of October for the past nine years a group of local Mexican people, RVer’s, Fulltime expats, and snowbirds have come together to participated in the international dance event, known as “Thrill the World.” Dancers in other communities around the world simultaneously perform with slow, stiff, jerky movements to the music of Thriller. This is a style immortalized by Michael Jackson’s Zombies, in his 1983 music video “Thriller.”
The Ajijic performance this year will be at the ballcourt, on the Malecon, were awnings are in place to providing shade for the seated VIP fundraising ticket holders. There is no charge or shade if you stand and watch. The shade, from the awnings, will also be used later to protect dinners at the elegant fundraising dinner.
Suddenly an audio system starts, and the deep base of “Thriller,” fills the air. The Flash Mob dance, “Thrill the World 2018” had started, The zombies move to the ballcourt and collapse. The dancers slowly rise and follow their dance captains through choreographed movements. After ten minutes the dance, here and in communities all around the world is finished.
Standing next to me, Gabriela a resident of Monterrey, Mexico, asked me in perfect English, “What is the point of all this?”
“The Flash Mob dance, Thrill the World,” I explained, “is a meaningless non-violent short demonstration of people power. This dance routine is taking place now in cities and villages around the world. It is used to raise money for their local charities.”
Gabriela turned from me and went back to her boyfriend to explain. The expression on his face as he looked up from Gabriela revealed his thoughts, “Crazy Gringos.”
After the Dance, the Fiesta Started
Thrill the World dancers here in Ajijic are typically aged 55 to 80, a mixture of nationalities and backgrounds, all volunteers, all having fun together.
Eiko Romero, an expat from Hawaii, now living in Ajijic, put it simply. “The two months of practices were exhausting, but the final performance was a high point of my year. The value of our effort was written on the children’s faces and the cheering crowds.”
Dee Grant, this year’s organizer, told me in an interview before the event, “I have taken an active part in this performance since I came to Ajijic eight years ago, it has become part of me.”
The after-dinner dance party was open to all, with no age restrictions or fee. Some Zombies still in rags, refusing to leave the fun of their zombie world, danced the evening away as their makeup started to crack.
M&L Tip of the Week:
- When towing a 5th Wheel of Travel Trailer long distances keep your wheel bearings greased, and carry two spare sets.
Linda and I purchased our 2005, 5th Wheel and spent twelve months as fulltime RVer’s. Then we became Snowbirds during the Canadian winters while maintaining a home in Ontario, Canada. In 2018 we sold our home and our 5th Wheel and purchased a 25 ft Travel Trailer. The plan is a three-year exploration of Mexico by RV, from our rental home base on the north shores of Lake Chapala, Mexico. We can be contacted directly at firstname.lastname@example.org