There are two things that as a little girl I always wanted to do but couldn’t: roll my rrrrr’s and whistle. To be quite honest, both still more or less elude me, although I am getting closer to pronouncing perro correctly and hailing a taxi via a whistle rather than a crazy arm-swinging dance at the side of the road.
A few months ago, I began to realise the importance of whistling in Mexican culture. It is something that I think you can almost miss, but once you notice it, it is everywhere.
To hail a cab, whistle hard and one will seemingly appear from nowhere. To get the attention of the guy selling water below your window, give a quick sharp whistle and he will come to your door. Where perhaps in England, whistling might seem rude, here it is the best way to get someone’s attention. The getting-attention whistle, is called…
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