Street lifeVida de calle


One of the things I have noticed here in Mexico City, usually beginning at about 8am, it the profusion of controlled yelling, whistling, long tones and other sounds emanating from various service vendors patrolling the neighborhoods. At first these sounded like nothing other than a twisted set of cris de coeur designed for no other purpose than to annoy me. Upon further investigation, it has become obvious that these are vital sales professionals, providing to-your-door services that have long since disappeared from wealthier countries due to higher labor costs. (Think of the milkman of old, or the profession of peddler, for example.)

Although each service provider seems to put their own jovial spin on noise making, with time I have been able to discern some distinctions:

1. The traveling knife sharpeners almost always use a plastic whistle.

2. The garbage collectors use a somewhat low pitched wail when shouting out “Basuuuuuuuuuuuraaaaahhhh“.

3. Competition is most intense among the water sellers. They will usually start with the brand name of their water (said rapidly), followed by a throaty and somewhat higher pitched “Aguuuuuuaaaaaaaaaa!”Entre otras cosas, he notado que en el DF hay mucho ruido en la calle desde las 8 de la mañana. Hay gritos y silbidos muy agudos. Al principio pensé que ese ruido existía solo para torturarme. Más tarde, vine a entender que hay gente que vende cosas y servicios en la calle, y cada uno tiene su propio sonido. Despues de estudiar un poco, he notado algunos sonidos distintos:

1. El afilador de cuchillos utiliza un silbato de plástico.

2. Los colectores de la basura gritan un poco bajo y profundo como “Basuuuuuuuuuuuuurrrrraaaaaaaaaahhhhh!”

3. La rivalidad es lo mas intenso entre los vendedores de agua. Normalmente empiezan con la marca, seguido con un tono más arriba…”Agggguuuuuuuaaaaaaaaaaa!!”