Waking up again in San Miguel de Allende is such a treat. After a rather arduous trip down via two stopovers, one in Las Vegas and one in Mexico City, we were happy to arrive at Casa La Amarillo, the house of our friends on La Palma in the barrio of San Antonio last Wednesday morining. Our amigos, Kathleen and Ron Hughes, met us with open arms, conducted us to Monet's, their local hangout. Charming like most San Miguel cafes and restaurants, Monet's offers a wide assortment of delicious foods and beverages, including "Unhappy Hour" from 8-11am with a special 35 peso breakfast. With our current good exchange rate that's only about $2.50. See why we save money living in Mexico? Que bueno!
Coming back to the house after some fun catching up over breakfast, we poured ourselves into a big comfy bed in our "new" bedroom and snoozed deeply until 3:00 in the afternoon. Kathleen and Ron realized we needed the sleep and were so quiet. When we woke up we went downstairs with K and R to meet our neighbors, Kim and Harry. We're in a two story casita with our own entrance and a rooftop patio off the kitchen. Lots of light streams in from front and kitchen windows. Love it! Everywhere there's something interesting to look out on. Distant hillsides and closer rooftops, some pretty with colorful pots and others with just the typical rebar sticking up, grace our vistas. That's one of those "only in Mexico" stories I may not have told you before. In order to avoid higher property taxes, Mexicans keep their houses in a slightly unfinished state with the rooftop terraces never quite finished. Clever! We also met our Landlady, Margarita who lives down a side alley next to our casa. Her whole family shares the space along with a couple of other charming rentals. Kathleen and Ron have been renting this place now for nine years and love the mostly Mexican neighborhood. Up the street is San Antonio Church and a beautiful square with scattered park benches and flora. Our local shop for groceries, abarrotes, is right on the square and we've already struck up a friendship with the owner, Antonio, who's very nice and full of fun. We can get everything there including fresh vegies and fruits. We paid only about 75 cents yesterday for five delicious big grapefruits, one of our favorite breakfast foods along with papayas, bananas and pineapple. Ummm!
Our local favorite restaurant is Rincocita a few blocks from us. K and R took us there for dinner the night before they left on December 30th. A very pleasant couple own and run it. The ambience and food are superior. Our neighborhood is quiet---well, most of the time, until locals decide to set off celebratory firecrackers or have an all night band for New Year's Eve. All part of the Mexican experience.
After our friends left early Friday morning, we walked into town and went back to some of our favorite haunts like El Jardin, the big and beautiful central plaza of San Miguel where families stroll and gather to share stories, children play and birds chirp. We walked the side streets, small cobblestoned calles, and stopped to say "hola" to a couple of shopkeepers we remembered from our past stays here. We got back at the casita and enjoyed preparing dinner in our sweet and accommodating kitchen. K and R have equipped it with everything one would need: French Press coffee maker, waffle iron, blender, a wok,great utensils and knives(sharper than the ones I have at home),and beautiful Mexican pottery. We feel very fortunate to be able to live here for the next three months.
New Years Eve we were invited to Margarita and Luis' party downstairs but, unfortunately, I came down with a sore throat and just didn't feel like mixing with the crowd or spreading my germs. Gary, too, felt tired. We realized we were still catching up from our activity filled holidays. Staying in felt good. We enjoyed the flickering lights in our window that Ron had put up for the holidays and those across our street, the music wafting up to our terrace where we indulged in a couple of margaritas with our homemade guacolmole and chips. We had a good dinner of local roast chicken we picked up earlier in the day and then just curled up on the couch to watch a TV movie on R & K's big wide Flat Screen TV. We ushered in the New Years with a hug and a toast and t;hen fell into bed, sounds of the music below lulling us to sleep---well, lulling is probably not quite the word, but you get the picture.
Yes, we have everything here, except our family and friends and that's why we will enjoy keeping up with your activities, too. We hope you had a wonderful Holiday Season and the New Year brings you good health, wonderful adventures and peace and prosperity!
P.S. Stay tuned: I'm still trying to figure out how to load my photos onto my blogspot.