Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Signs and Visitations in San Miguel de Allende

Yesterday, after the drama of the storm, it rained steadily for some time. At about 9 o'clock last night as I took Choco out for his walk, it was still raining lightly. I opened the front wooden door, and then the outer metal door (which is sort of an open gate/grate-like thing.) We went out. I then closed the wooden door behind us and reached to close the metal door and there was a rather large lizard (well, not iguana-size, but not chameleon-size, either -- probably 8" long and a US quarter-size diameter) right by the latch (where I had just had my hand.) Startled the beejabbers out of me.

Frankly, I don't know how I hadn't knocked it off. My hand must have actually touched it. At any rate, I gasped. The lizard looked at me. I looked at the lizard. The is something so very, very old about a lizard's gaze. The lizard didn't move. Okay. I thought. That's weird. It was on the door, but didn't move when I rattled and slid the latch, swung the door open and shut. Maybe it's dead, I thought. But no. It was clearly looking at me. I looked back. Okay. I thought. I'll walk Choco and it will be gone when we get back. It wasn't. So I had to gingerly get in through both doors, then latch and close and padlock the metal door (which I do at night) which involved putting the lock on less than an inch from the lizard. Hell, less than 1/2" from the lizard. I really didn't want the lizard to panic and run up my arm or something. It didn't. I was relieved.

I kept thinking about the lizard. It wasn't dead, but maybe it was injured. No. What would an injured lizard be doing on a crossbar three feet off the ground on my door? Maybe it really was dead and someone had put it there as a hex. (I do live in a neighborhood of curanderas and witches, and this is not as completely far-fetched as it might seem...) Don't be ridiculous, I thought.

So I went upstairs and puttered around for a couple of hours. At about midnight, I was starting to get into my nightie and get ready for bed and I decided to go see if the lizard was gone. It wasn't. It looked at me. I looked at it. Back upstairs I decided the storm had either knocked it off an upper terrace or it had been washed out of somewhere and had climbed on the door to get safely out of the torrents of rain. Then I remembered that lizards are like snakes in that they go into a state of torpor when cold. The lizard must have gotten wet and cold and then crawled onto the metal door, which undoubtedly made it colder. Okay. I went to bed.

I got up at 8 to let Choco out. The lizard was still there. It looked at me. Shit, I thought. I carefully opened the door and closed it behind us. The sun hadn't yet cleared the hill and it was still cool. We walked. We returned. The lizard looked at me. I carefully opened the door and closed it behind us. I decided to wait until the sun had fully hit the metal door for at least an hour and the door and the lizard had a chance to warm up. At about 10, I went to the door. The lizard was gone. I looked everywhere around the door. Gone.

Pondering the Visitation of the Lizard, I consulted my Medicine Cards, which reminded me that Lizard is the Dreamer and the energy is from the Dream World of Symbols and Shadows. Pay attention She said, looking at me with her old, old eyes. To your Dreams, your Fears, your Synchronicities, your Inner World. Pay attention.

--Hope Swann


Elspeth said...

Interesting. It's true what you say about lizards having an ancient gaze! Maybe the lizard was stationery because it was going to molt. Shedding skin probably requires stillness.

Anonymous said...

Possibly, but I don't think it would be molting in cold weather, and it showed no signs. Its skin was firm and tight. And I believe they go into seclusion to molt as they are very vulnerable during the process. This was a very public space. I'm pretty convinced it was just very COLD. And it was gone the next day with the warmth of the sun... (This is Hope responding, but it will probably post as anonymous because this site doesn't like me...)

Elspeth said...

I guess because I live in the tropics I've never noticed a lizard being cold. And come to think of it I've never seen lizards when I'm in temperate climes.

Anonymous said...

Ah. Well, I'm in the high desert of central Mexico at 6500 feet and we had a sudden, quite cold, torrential rain... I have seen snakes incapacitated by the cold. My daughter, who has a masters degree in herpetology, says it's fairly common...

leah said...

that's an awesome story, i really dig lizards and i have a lot of them around. i like to think they're protecting us.