Thursday, March 29, 2007

Walking Tours, Rotary Meeting, and Dogs

Monday & Tuesday – Week 4: With guests, we now have to experiment on the activities with which we can get our friends involved. You know you don’t want to create imbalances with too much restaurant eating, or on the other hand too much eating at home. We started with a light breakfast of cereal, toast and fruit at home. Then just before 10 a.m. I walked with the Boyd’s to the Jardin, so they could get signed up for the historic walking tour. When they got off on the tour I just enjoyed myself reading and people watching in the park. Mary Ann joined me for coffee at 11 a.m. and then we went looking at panama hats for me. As an inexperienced shopper, I found there are extensive price and quality differences. Obviously, more research to be done.

We met them at the conclusion of the tour and then started what I would call a “shop around.”
First to the bakery, then to Bonanza Grocery, and we then determined that the Boyd’s after three hours of walking might need some lunch and sitting down. We stopped at Meson de San Jose, one of our favorite lunch hang-outs. The waiter, Uriel, now breaks into a broad smile when we arrive. We must have been tipping too much! Next to the market for fruit and a complete walk through of the Artesanias craft sections. Obviously, Mall needed the full orientation. Tom and I kept looking for places to sit down.

Upon returning to the casa, everyone seemed more than happy to get into the siesta mode before a couple of hours of bridge. Mary Ann tried to talk me into agreeing that we should go out to dinner. I am now in deep trouble as I insisted that we have dinner at the casa. We enjoyed quesadillas, fruit and empanadas, and I think everyone was happy except Chef Mary Ann. I will work hard tomorrow in being able to move back into the master suite.

Tuesday was a day planned with the purpose of attending the San Miguel mid-day Rotary meeting with Tom and Mall ( It is the only English language Rotary Club in Mexico and has been chartered for about a year and a half. They meet at the beautiful Villa Jacaranda Hotel and Restaurant. As guests of the Boyd’s we had an educational and interesting time. The program was an environmental water engineer from Boise, Idaho who had been doing water aquifer work in the San Miguel area for the past five years. At the lunch (see Tom & Mall above) following we had the opportunity to talk with a member, formerly from California, who as a volunteer in San Miguel was in charge of food distribution for the Feed The Hungry organization which feeds 3,000 children daily from 28 feeding sites in San Miguel and the surrounding villages. For more information visit:

The rest of the afternoon was spent at the art and design center, Fabrica La Aurora, giving Mall further opportunity to scan the art, ceramics, and crafts. How was I to know she would select and buy a ton of dishes and other kitchen ceramics? Tom Boyd now thinks my touring plan is for the birds, and holds me personally responsible. Ai, carrumba. And to make it worse Mary Ann volunteered that we would haul the stuff back to Wenatchee. Now just how big is that Nissan Maxima? At dinner I suggested that the Boyd’s make room in our car for the box by taking back on the plane, our car chains. That should make the security check really interesting! Our dinner was at the El Market Bistro restaurant. The food presentation was a work of art and even tasted great.

Quirky Living Note: There are a lot of dogs in San Miguel. These are not street dogs, but rather many very valuable purebreds being walked on a lead either by their owners or by dog walkers. I attribute this phenomena to the presence in San Miguel of a lot of very rich gringos who just can’t live here without their pets. One really strange site (or sound) is hearing a dog barking from the sky (see photo above). When looking up you will see a dog pacing and barking from a roof edge. With all of the roof patios this is just the way for a dog to check on what is happening in his or her neighborhood. I would also venture that this would also discourage any unwanted entry. It may be cheaper than iron bars on the windows!

No comments: