My brother in law, George (Jorge), is a very interesting fellow. I first met him in 2004 when I was introduced to my wife’s family. She has 9 brothers, 2 sisters, and a lot of half brother and sisters, too many to list or even to know.

George was born in Vera Cruz, Mexico City, or Tijuana. My belief is that he was born in Tijuana. When I first met George he was most gracious, friendly, warm, accepting….in other words he was just a really nice guy. He was disarming and likeable.  I liked him immediately.

I like some of my wife’s brothers. There are nine as I said and of the nine there are three that are good guys, one who is questionable, two who are not good guys, one who is a doctor, and two who appear to be connected to a cartel. I should state the two not good brothers may also be cartel connected. If they are connected that would mean of the nine brothers four are connected to a cartel. Not a good percentage. It is possible I could be missing the signs and one or two of the other five are also connected to a cartel. It is just hard to determine these things so I give them the benefit of the doubt.

I can safely say George is not connected to a cartel. He is a humble man who seems a lot like Forest Gump, but with a normal IQ, if not a high IQ. George has a wife, three sons, and I think one or two daughters. By now he has a lot of grand kids, of which I am envious. I have no grand children and likely will die before I see one. I probably have a better chance of meeting a young woman, having one or more kids, living another 25 years (I would be 90) until a grandchild will be born, than of having a grand child in my near future. Not to say that is a bad thing on my own children but they are not looking to have kids of their own and with that plan a grandchild for me is not possible. I digress…back to George.

George’s father, Vicente, was a very successful businessman. I never met him as he died in 2000 and I met my wife in 2004.  Vicente was very rich and he was not connected to cartels. He was a straight up businessman who was a key developer and leader in building up the Revolution tourist area of Tijuana, which still thrives today. When Vicente passed he had many millions of dollars of which two or three of the not so good brothers took all of it.

George was adventurous and carefree as a young man. He lived like most rich kids from what I know. George had, and still has, a passion for race horses. He loves horses. He loves going to the track too. Here in San Diego we have Del Mar Race Track, a very famous place in the world of horse racing. I have been there with my wife maybe two times. My brother in law George goes there a lot. I do not know if he wins much on his bets but I know he knows the horses, the jockeys, the whole horse racing scene, and he loves it too!

George has a simple approach to joy and happiness. I do not know his inner thoughts but have gleaned much from my wife, who loves George a lot. George does not speak very good English and I do not speak very good Spanish, hence our discussions are pretty much… “how have you been?….me too”…( “como est as?..e tu” )

The thing that is most curious about George is that he walks and runs everywhere. I have never seen him drive a car. Given the choice between a ride to his home, a few miles away, and a walk there, George will choose the walk nine times out of ten. He has been running marathons since he was a young man and still runs them today. He runs like a race horse I am told. I like to think when George is running he sees himself on the track at Del Mar running against American Pharoh, Blue Tuesday, or Serendipity. George loves to run.

George being a runner and a walker pretty much tells you he is not a big man, overweight, or unfit. George is lean, strong, and always ready to reach out and help in any way he can.  On first impression no one would guess George to be a very fit runner. He is relaxed, if not a bit sleepy, and in fact seems to be able to nap on demand. I have several pictures of George in a chair or on a couch napping, some with his mouth open. He can get into deep sleep fast. I see him as always being efficient. If there is food eat, you eat, if you can sleep, sleep, a lot like the Army Ranger or Navy Seal mindset. But when you can run…you run and you run fast.

I regret not speaking better Spanish and learning more about George firsthand. I do know that of all my wife’s nine brothers he is the one who always showed up when she was sick or in the hospital.  He made his way to our house, stayed, and kept a watchful eye on my wife during her medical recoveries. He also took her to Santa Anita for an outing to get her some fresh air..and I think she even won a bet or two. So in sum, George is cool and a really good bro. Run George run!

Michael Hawke