Mario Ignacio Garcia Urbina

Unfortunately, it is a bad piece of news that I write you in this post. It is about a 24 years old man who used to live the village of Chiapas, Mexico. Mario Ignacio Garcia Urbina was studying its fifth semester of Medicine at the school UPAEP, Mexico and has been president of the students association of his school from 2009 to 2010. The last 7 th of May, he was kidnapped and hold in a house while his parents were gathering the ransom. The 15 th of May his corpse was found in the street. He had obviously been stabbed by his abductors…

I meet Mario, my friend, during a one month stay in Kingston, Canada, that I did in July 2006 at Queen’s University School of English. This trip abroad remains the best one that I have ever done. A few weeks ago, Tracy Lott, the manager of the School of English, sent emails to all the ancient students which were with Mario so as to collect memories of the moments we spent with him to constitute a memory book for his family and his fiancee. Most of what is writte n here is part of what I have sent to Tracy.


On the picture above (that I took myself), there are : on the front left side and advertising the pizza box is Howie from China, on the front right side is Patrice from Côte d’Ivoire, on the back right side is Juan from Mexico and on the back left side are two French girls, the blond one is Jenny and I miss the name of the second one. On the center of the photography is Mario Garcia, the man with who I spent most of my time during my stay in Kingston.

The previous photography is quite nice and we had a very good time during this evening. We organized a pizza party and I remember we had great fun. I think it was after a day of high activity as we were all tired. And Howie was very funny. He made a joke about the toilets of the pizzeria (pee-pee stuff lol) and everybody was doubled up. Though I had not really understood his joke, I could not prevent myself from being doubled up too just seeing others’ faces. This was great lol.

I remember that Mario and I wandered around Queen’s university campus together. We noticed that many Canadian houses bore a Canadian flag and we thought that Canadians were all chauvinistic but actually, it was just after Canadian D-Day! Also I told Mario : « you see, it seems to me that in Kingston, the bigger the car in front of the house is, the smaller the house is », and he laughed.

I think we were a good match because we both wanted to have as most fun as possible during that summer. We also enjoyed practicing sports though not the same. I remember we went to play basketball together and he made me run like nobody lol, but I really appreciated to get exhausted and to play with him. We also had the opportunity to swim and play water polo with other classmates and I have to say that I was quite faster than him!

We enjoyed also parties with classmates from all around the world and that is how I discovered that Mario was a great Salsa dancer. I had never danced Salsa before and I discovered it in Kingston. I think that it is by looking at Mario during parties that I realized : «Yeah, this is a very good way of meeting girls!!». I am still working on my Salsa and hope to become at least as good as you Mario! I remember that he called me the crazy French in part due to the fact that I was a bit too spontaneous and direct with girls that I did not know lol. I remember once, I invited a nice Columbian girl to have a drink and at the end she told me she was not interested in having more than a drink with me…When I told it to Mario he had great laughs and told me that was the way Columbian girls were!

Once I went in Mario’s host family house and I remember that it was not a luxurious place at all but this was not a problem for Mario who seemed to be quite happy with this place. I also noticed he had a drawer full of presents from his family in Mexico what makes me think how nice his family should be. In particular, I remember he gave me a sweet from Mexico : a lollipop that you dunk in a powder and which actually makes your mouth as an active volcano… This was quite funny (especially for him lol). I thought it was normal for Mexican people to have spicy sweets as they usually have spicy food !

During our stay, we went also to Montreal for a weekend. There were two cars : one with the French speaking people (Patrick, Jenny, the unnamed girl and I) and another with the Spanish speaking people (Juan, Juan’s daughter, Jorge, another Mexican guy, and Mario). We gathered in Montreal on a Saturday night and we enjoyed a great time in Saint Catherine street’s pubs and clubs.

Mario was always ready to have fun, help others and enjoy the present moments. He was also quite studious and worked well to improve his English. During our English classes, I remember that we had to present one of our favorite movies and Mario chose to present “Happy Gilmore”, the story of a young man who does his best to buys back his grandmother’s home. I believe this movie was a good hint about some of Mario’s values in life.

After I left Kingston, I only had a few online contacts with Mario. However, the comments he usually wrote on his MSN profile were so joyful, grateful and spontaneous that I knew he was just having a great life in full bloom and love… I believe that it is one thing to experience great and joyful moments in your life but that it is another thing not to be afraid to express them and tell everyone around you how well you feel. And Mario was brave enough to do it. I think Mario was quite mature for his age and had understood the simple and main points of life.

This message is to let you know how great a man Mario was. I hope you will have a thought for him some time and that : if you pray, thanks for praying for him, if you drink thanks for drinking in his memory, if you sing or dance, sing or dance in his name and if you smoke, well… just stop smoking lol!

I believe that life is not fair by nature and that it is up to us to make the difference. Therefore, as Mario used to say during this unforgettable 2006 summer, «let’s kick some balls, man!».

I know I can not do anything to bring Mario back but I will do my best to always bear him in my heart, tell his story to everyone I know, and enjoy my life being careful…

Though the later the better, see you later my friend! I have faith that right now you are dancing Salsa up in the sky, keeping a steady and tender eye on those that you used to love and care for.

I miss you.

Forever in my will to live and in my heart.

God bless your fiancee, your family and your friends.

The crazy French.

PS: Winner of 2010 football world cup : Mexico…!

The visitors 1 in Lancaster!

Ok, so as you can guess it right now, this new blog is going to be more international than the first one given I am using English! I should say that it is a good thing for my French readers to improve their English!

I had a few topics waiting for the launching of this new blog ; the first one is the first visit of some members of my family in Lancaster!

It is true that the period of revision I have been through was tough and I should thank Françoise, Viktor (Victor in Viking) and Bertrand (Dad) for coming to visit me three days in last April. This was a good break in my revision! They were a bit in a rush because they had planned to visit all the UK in less than 7 seven days so as to enter in the Guinness book but it worked out well ! Just kidding :p.

In the album « The Visitors 1″, you have a few photographies of their stay. First, inside my Statistics building (where I work), then during a hiking in the Lakes District. It was a nice hiking though the rainny weather was not the cup of tea of Françoise nor of Victor. We planned to walk for 3 hours and left the car at 11 am. As I am a trustworthy hiking guide, 5 hours later we went back to our car…  (I should say I had forgotten there was a mountain in the middle of our walk lol).

The  Visitors 1


Nevertheless, they really enjoy the walk and especially Victor. I remember he was keen on walking ashore the Lake giving me details of his new medieval fantastic video game!

The day after our hiking, the weather was sunny and they went back to the Lakes District without me as I had to work. They had a car and could cover a big distance which let them have a pretty good idea of how beautiful the Lakes are.  At the end of their trip in the UK, my father told me that the beauty of the Lakes worthed well the picturesque landscape of the LochNess in Scotland.

They were quite happy with their cheap accommodations in Lancaster University campus, except Viktor who was infortunately in a bedroom near the highway with a window which was badly soundproofed… This explains why he looks sleepy on some photographies :p. Lol!! Sorry Viktor about taking you as my jokes target in this post.

This was great to host some of my relatives in Lancaster since it made me feel that though I am far away, we can still see each other easily.


Thanks for that and see you next time!

Hoping to get new visitors to  film « The Visitors 2″,







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