I was sitting at an umbrella-shaded table on the Boca Chica beach this past Saturday, fairly relaxed, writing up lesson plans for the coming week. (The beach on Saturdays is a good place to do this. Who knows why? 😎 )Merengue music was playing on the speakers from the bar next to me. All in all, a pretty cool scene, and the usual hordes of beach-goers seemed a bit less than normal. Suddenly, I heard drums–not traditional-style congas, but marching drums, bass and snare. Walking along the sand came a rag-tag group of 5 or 6 young guys, perhaps 15-18 years old, tapping on their various instruments. I thought “there goes the peace.” But, they continued on their way, so it wouldn’t be long before they were out of hearing. Then, from a table of 7 people about 20 feet in front of me, a man started whistling at the receding drummers, trying to get their attention. They eventually heard him and came to his table and started playing. Wow! Far from being disruptive, they were great–very enthusiastic about what they were doing and having loads of fun. They played staccato, high-energy beats, with one member gyrating and dancing to the sound and onlookers, including the guy who called them over, occasionally joining in. They played for about 15 minutes and attracted quite an audience, also getting quite a few donations. You never know what your going to experience on any given day, some good, some not (like the smoke on Friday), and how expectations can be proven wrong. A very good experience, this one was. More later.