We have had a relaxing and uneventful two weeks here in Mexico. We have ventured out for meals and happy hour a couple of times but frankly really haven’t done much sightseeing. The town is picturesque and the center is only about a mile stroll (mostly flat) along cobblestone streets and narrow sidewalks from our place but other than the churches and shopping there isn’t that much to see…its more about being here. And we have enjoyed that!
The locals and the expat Gringos are all very friendly and helpful. The weather has been incredible. We have had a day or two of temperatures above 80 degrees but the humidity is so low that as long as you aren’t in the sun it is very comfortable. In the evenings the temperatures fall to the lower 50s. So while most of our friends and family have been suffering through a very hot summer, we have been most pleased that we elected to be here! And having the pool has been nice in the warmer days.
Our “Vacations Rental by Owner” (VRBO) condo is one of about 30 in a small complex with a pool. While there is a huge rooftop terrace, it is accessed by a very tight spiral staircase from the kitchen balcony with the view of SMA you see at the top of the post, so we haven’t really used it. But I have enjoyed coffee in the morning and wine in the evenings from the kitchen balcony.
Several have asked about any issues with visits from Mantazuma. The condo has purified water in one of the kitchen faucets and by law all SMA restaurants have to use purified water for ice and since its such a tourist town, most of them use it for everything…so thankfully, we haven’t had any issues It is strange to have to wash everything from the store that isn’t going to be cooked in anti bacteria solution. But given the issues in the USA with romaine and such this summer, maybe we ought to all be doing that!
We visited the “Tuesday Market” this week. AMAZING. I couldn’t get over how big it was. Imagine the largest flea market you have been to, combine it with a farmer’s market and an arts and craft show, add in some food trucks and then double or triple it and you might be close to this spectacle. We had intended to eat lunch there and there were certainly lots and lots of tasty morsels we wanted to try but our lack of spanish combined with the crowds and not being sure how to order (do you order and then sit down, sit and order?) meant that we simply bought some veggies, fruits and aqua frescos (fruit waters) and then grabbed a cab back to the condo. Then we walked towards town for lunch.
Never seen huge chicoronnes before:
And who knew you could buy peeled watermelons?
Speaking of food, below is the SMA food porn to date. I am particularly enjoying the abundance of beans and mole’. We have also made good use of the well equipped kitchen here to eat in. There is a huge supermarket a short walk away (with $2 taxis waiting to bring us home) that has not only mexican foods but also american ones….peanut butter was a welcome sight after four months without any!
Chicken Mole and Chicken Enchiladas
There are a ton of places with Tacos El Pastor-stacked marinaded chicken cooked on a vertical spit and served with a slice of pineapple, onions, cilantro, lime and your choices of salsa. Yummy! Usually only 7 pesos each or about 35 cents!
Black bean soup, goat cheese stuffed chili’s in mole and “Mexican Vermicelli”
Mexican breakfasts-huevos with chorizo and chicquiles ( nacho chips with verde sauce) and eggs.
We are here until next Monday and then we head to Raleigh (via Mexico City, DFW and MIA) for two nights. From Raleigh we go to Seabrook Island for a few days to celebrate Claudia Freidank’s birthday (her 29th of course) before heading to Danville and Mike’s mom where we will generally be until we leave with her for Copenhagen and the Baltic Cruise.
While we have been here, we have also been working on our travels after Lois leaves us in Lisbon on 9/27. Jenny and Brian, a couple of Brits we met on the Viking Transatlantic foolishly invited us to come visit them in Scotland and to their surprise, we are taking them up on their offer. Hopefully they won’t come to regret it! We will leave Lisbon a few hours after Lois and spend four nights in London before flying to Aberdeen where if all goes as planned, Jenny will pick us up and take us to their place nearby. After some time at their place visiting the sights near Aberdeen (we have been promised the best fish and chips in the world) all four of us are going to spend a night near Loch Ness and then two in Glasgow. They will then head back to Aberdeen and we will jump a train to Edinburgh for two nights before we fly to Dublin for three. From there we fly to Porto where we will have rented an Airbnb on the coast for two weeks. Yost and Sam (our friends from DC who invited us to join them on our River Cruise a few years back) are coming to spend five nights with us there. From Porto we will fly on the 29th of October to Milan to meet Peggy and Lowell on the 30th. The four of us are going to take the next six days to drive to Rome (two nights outside Milan plus four more in Tuscany somewhere) to catch the transatlantic cruise home on November 5th.
We also have had several discussions here about our future plans. We agree that we both miss having our own place so I don’t think we will be becoming full time nomads…but we also agree that we have enjoyed slow travel and being someplace longer than just a few days. So we are beginning to think about what 2019 holds for us.
The possibilities are broad – Tommy Barrett, Mike’s friend from college is working up a plan to go to Cambodia and we are considering that, we really enjoyed the transatlantic cruise so that would be fun to do again, and we are loving the cool summer here in San Miguel so that is also a possibility for next year. Lucky for us, we don’t have to make any decisions anytime soon!