I'm in Hermosillo, getting ready to switch from "visiting family" mode to "reforestation" mode and head south. I made my first visit today to the offices of a group that works on biodiversity issues, including restoration, throughout Sonora. Their name translates to "Harmony between Biodiversity and Development."
Hermosillo is the capital and the largest city in Sonora, so lots of state wide groups have offices here even though their projects are hours away. I've seen this pattern before, and I guess its something I'm going to have to get used to.
My cousin Millie came alolng to guide me through the bus system, and because she's a bit bored. Her university administration is on strike, which apparently is nothing new, since they do it every year.
We found the place and knocked on the unmarked door, to be greeted by the realization that I had forgotten everyone's name! I introduced us and awkardly asked for Eduardo (the director) by saying "E...e...e..." until the man at the front door finished the name for me. Fortunately, they were totally understanding and approachable, "totally normal" people as Millie commented later. Eduardo asked me to explain what I was doing (we had talked on the phone a couple of weeks prior). I told him I was traveling Mexico visiting restoration projects and the people involved in them.
We talked for about an hour, and he told me about their main restoration project in the border region of Sonora, which of course I cant see cuz its 8 hours away. Towards the end of the conversation, well after I had asked them if they could connect me to any other projects, Eduardo casually mentioned that his wife was director of the Alamos Reserve. My jaw dropped. What a connection! I'm planning on visiting that reserve, located arond a beutiful old Spanish mission town, and having someone's wife as a toplevel connection should be really helpful.
As we were heading out, the man who had greeted us dropped another one. He'd been sitting there quietly the whole time, and just now let us know that he was the director of restoration!
Millie and I left talking about how open and friendly they were, and it exciting that Millie seemed genuinely interested and engaged both during and after the meeting. Sometimes I forget how smart she is...
I love you Millie!