This study analyzes interviews with expat women in Oaxaca, Mexico. The women use the “magic” of Oaxaca to elude traditional expectations of aging and gender. Oaxaca is crucial for the process of defining themselves as vital and independent in what Massey (1994) calls a progressive sense of place. A translocal emotional geography is constructed. However, the issues of place and nation are more problematic. Efforts to sufficiently enter their various communities in Oaxaca determine the success the women have at overcoming neo‐colonial interactions and assumptions.