Tuesday, March 27, 2007

The Boyd's & Warren's Off and Running

Saturday & Sunday – Week 4: Tom & Mall arrive today as our first casa guests. The trip to the airport in Leon is now a familiar journey. Upon our getting to the terminal there was just a bit of heart palpitation when the flight was not shown on the arrival board. I then talked with the Continental “check in” staff and they said on Saturday’s sometimes the airport just does not post it, but in fact it will be arriving, give or take an extra 20 minutes. Ah, Mexico! While waiting I chatted with a couple from Chattanooga who bought a home in San Miguel two years ago. They were meeting their kids and grandkids who were making a first visit. Now do you think we could be living in a foreign country and are kids would wait two years before visiting?

The Boyd’s arrived in fine shape and we were off to Casa Tranquilidad. Mall and Mary Ann experimented in making margueritas, while Tom and I returned the car to the parking lot and caught a cab back. We certainly did not want to be late for cocktails and munchies on the patio. For dinner Mary Ann had cooked her famous chicken enchilada casserole. To keep in tune with our location she was using local chilies’ and the dish was somewhat hotter than usual. Muy caliente!

San Miguel gets an early beginning on Holy Week. Starting at midnight a procession starts in Atotonilco and walks the 12 kilometers into San Miguel carrying Our Lord of the Column, a statue of the beaten and bloodied Christ. The statue is normally housed in the Shrine of Atotonilco, but is brought to San Miguel for each Holy Week. It is credited with miraculous powers. Hundreds of believers meet the procession early Sunday in San Miguel with rockets, fireworks, church bells, and with the streets bedecked with purple and white decorations and flowers. We told Tom and Mall that all the loud noises would just be welcoming them to San Miguel. And welcomed they were with the rockets starting about 3:30 a.m.

Sunday morning we started with a wonderful breakfast at Antigua Villa Santa Monica. The others enjoyed the house specialty which was an egg dish in a bowl with crème cheese. I enjoyed my Sunday favorite, Eggs Benedict. Following breakfast we walked through Parque Juarez and through town to the Biblioteca. The Home and Garden tour this week had two homes but with multiple parts. Both were amazing in their own way. We however really were enamored of a home downtown at Pila Seca 7. It was owned by a couple from Aspen and had 5 bedrooms and was exquisitely designed and decorated. Casa Seis Fuentes is rentable for only $7,000 a week, but if you were sharing with 5 couples it is doable, and clearly worth it
(http://www.mexicandestinations.com/store/p40details32.php). Besides, it comes with a staff of seven. Maybe in the future. To solve a great thirst from all the walking we had a nice libation in one of the rooftop bars, before returning for our siestas.

For our late afternoon entertainment we finally broke out the bridge cards and enjoyed refreshments and cards on the patio. When it became too dark to play, we headed down to the centro and had a very nice dinner at Pueblo Viejo. See, all that research has paid off.

Quirky Living Note: As I read the guide books, the Atención newspaper, and the free giveaway booklets, it appears that every event, every casa for rent or sale, and every store is within just 2 ½ blocks from the Jardin. Now I appreciate that many of the blocks are really long, but this just has to be a stretch of the imagination. It has been my suspicion that this little ruse comes from the minds of realtors, and their always creative descriptions. To increase the value of local properties you always want to be near the center and the historic ambiance.

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