The Handbrake

The Handbrake

Rafael Funes – February 1, 2016

A few years ago I had a nightmare, one of those that wake you up in a cold sweat.


I was responsible for bringing one of the blocks to build the Great Pyramid through the desert sands. Despite my engineering training, in my dream there was no wheel, nor logs to assist us. When viewing the scene from the perspective of an observer, I visualized a rope tied to a rock that was going through my forehead. I was doing my best under the dehydrating desert heat.

In addition to the resistance caused by the natural sinking of the giant monolith, I realized no one was helping me. As I leave the scene I discovered a group of people observing me, they were my colleagues. “What a lack of cooperation!”, I said to myself, “how do they dare to demand results if they do not help?” Either way, I continued with my task.

Soon, the inexplicable heaviness of the task made me watch the scene again, now with a little more care. Suddenly I saw something moving over the rock. A group of traveling pseudo-colleagues was at the top of the cliff, they were gathering, talking and enjoying the scenery. I felt exhausted and I just thought it was way too much.

The fatigue, heat and thirst were killing my desire to move forward. I felt the big rock with much more resistance, as if someone was pulling in the opposite side. Are pure hallucinations, I repeated again and again, but the force that opposed my progress did not let up and even seemed to be getting stronger. Suddenly the cause became clear. There was a third group that was not content with doing nothing or with generating greater weight, this group was pulling in the opposite direction.

That was my last thought before waking up.

During the day I tried to understand the meaning of my dream. Too bad that Joseph, King of dreams in Technicolor, was not on hand to explain me the meaning of such distressing hallucination. I had to stick to my observations of everyday reality to find out a translation to this story. After several years of watching companies and entrepreneurs, directors and managers, workers, public and private teachers, rulers, and so on, I came to the conclusion that my dream had nothing esoteric or strange to understand it fully. The message was very simple: In Mexico we drive with the handbrake.

There have been several years since the last time I had this nightmare. Of course I’m facing, again and again, with organizations and individuals that go through life with the parsimony of someone who has no hurry to arrive, as they don’t know where they want to arrive. They have no long-term goals or a vision of their own future.

However, I find every day more people and businesses with clear goals and whose ability to see the future go beyond the horizon. The latter invest time, money and effort in improving their future. They take risks, decide and act. They know that Mexico continues. Moreover, they have clear that other economies like China, Ireland, Korea or Singapore, are not waiting for a morning conference politician in turn to act, nor do they care.

Let’s take away the handbrake and allow our country to flow.