Carlos Castenda believed that if you didn’t like your history or that it was holding you back then you should change it and make up one that would create the kind of person you want to be. This philosophy a been incorporated in San Miguel by Gangs as one of the requirements for Gang membership. Who doesn’t want to be in a gang made up of former chefs, artists and tycoons. “I was in retail” won’t get many people to join a gang but “I was a buyer” will. So the first step in joining a gang is figuring out who you use be.

The following is the story of one successful gang member and who she became.

Mary Thompson moved to San Miguel in 2001 from Fresno California, with her husband (whose name and story is irrelevant). Mary had worked in an insurance office completing forms. When she moved to San Miguel, finding a gang was difficult. Her uneventful life prevented her from joining the Spiritual Gang. So she took a few art courses and after a tumble from a hall rug, joined the Rug Gang. At her interview about her LBSMA (Life Before San Miguel) she was truthful and was told her past life wouldn’t do and to dig deep and make it more interesting. Her eureka moment came the next Friday when she was going through her recipe box. In her LBSMA, she had submitted a recipe for Tuna Caserole to her Church newsletter back home. “That makes me a reporter, she thought”. So she reinvented herself and started to write investigative REPORTS for Atención.

She now has Scrap Book of her hard hitting stories

  • Finding Cheap Transportation and/or a Ride to Leon Airport
  • Where to buy Poker Chips in San Miguel
  • Wednesday Lunch Group meeting El Buen Cafe
  • Eggs Benedict at Café Monet
  • Dog Cowboy – Won’t Someone Please make Another Happy Ending for a Doggie?*
  • Water That Comes in Bags
  • Why Buy Starbucks when there is Cheaper Coffee
  • Foster Homes for Cockapoos
  • FM3, FM2 and other Stations on your Radio

Mary doesn’t like to report on anything unpleasant or Mexican. She is at every art opening with her notepad (that she made herself) and finds everything “Fabulous”.

Creating Your Past

This is an exerpt from a Gang Manual to help people invent themselves. Use it to decode people’s history.

How to find your past career.

  • If you once made a tuna fish sandwich back home, then in SMA you were a souschef.
  • If you once wrote something for your church bulletin back home, then in SMA you were a reporter.
  • If you once used fresh thyme and/or rosemary back home, then in SMA you were a chef.
  • If you have ever owned two houses (doesn’t have to be at the same time) back home, then in SMA you were a real estate mogul.
  • If you ever once hand addressed Christmas card back home, then in SMA you were a calligrapher.
  • If you ever once gave directions to someone on the street back home, then in SMA you were an air traffic controller.
  • If you acted in any junior school play back home, then in SMA you were an actor.
  • If you ever once painted an outside door back home, then in SMA you were an artists
  • If you ever hemmed your husband’s pants back home then in SMA you were a designer

* for more on the story join the Civil List