Dia dos, San Miguel

 
November 9, 2018   Mexico, SMA
 
 

Despite what many assume, civilized coexistence in a culture of tolerance is not always the norm, or even universally desired. Democracy is a hard-won, easily rolled-back state of affairs from which many secretly yearn to be released. Uki Goi, an Argentinian writer, in the New York Review of Books

A discouraging thought, but I figure it's better to face the reality that we aren't all on the same page as to how best we should live. The recent election has driven home the point. It should have been a blue blowout, instead it was a draw. I'm left wondering how half the electorate could be such idiots.

Anyway...

We're having a wonderful time in SMA (San Miguel de Allende). The weather is great, with clear skies and comfortably cooler than the Yucatan, the food is good and nicely priced, the music is everywhere and pleasing to the ears, and the town is full of eye candy. Topping it off, the house we are staying in is an architectural work of art --- we've even befriended the architects, but more on that in a future photo-filled post.

SMA has a reputation as a gringo town, and while there is a large community of ex-pats plus tourists, it's still overwhelmingly non-gringo, which is a good thing. As in Merida, the locals are very friendly and helpful, they are always ready with a smile and a buenos dias, and they take my feeble attempts at Spanish with good humor. This certainly contrasts with my experiences in France.

A couple more kudos which also apply to Meridians: they have the queueing thing down, all you have to do is see how they line up for the collectivos. And I rarely smell cigarettes, when I do the source is usually a gringo. A big contrast with, say, Italy and Greece where it feels like everyone chain smokes.

Complaints? Hmm, the sidewalks could be wider. But it's an old town, there's only so much space, so aside from banning cars I don't see a solution. At least the sidewalks here and in Merida are clean and in reasonable condition. As I've written previously, Buenos Aires retains the crown for crappiest sidewalks, both in terms of disrepair and dog poop.

I'm listening to War/No More Trouble by Playing for Change.

 
Sml    Med    Big
 
 
View of SMA from Mirador      
 
View of SMA from Mirador      
 
View of SMA from Mirador      
 
Biblioteca store      
We stopped by the library to get tickets to a talk by former president Vicente Fox. But upon walking into the library store I was blown away by the eye-grabbing mural covering the ceiling and the upper walls. It's a really nice library and has an inner courtyard and garden.
 
Biblioteca store      
We stopped by the library to get tickets to a talk by former president Vicente Fox. But upon walking into the library store I was blown away by the eye-grabbing mural covering the ceiling and the upper walls. It's a really nice library and has an inner courtyard and garden.
 
Biblioteca store      
We stopped by the library to get tickets to a talk by former president Vicente Fox. But upon walking into the library store I was blown away by the eye-grabbing mural covering the ceiling and the upper walls. It's a really nice library and has an inner courtyard and garden.
 
Street vendors      
 
Street vendors      
 
Street vendors      
 
Students catch ride on passing truck      
 
Students catch ride on passing truck      
 
Students catch ride on passing truck      
 
Plaza de Toros      
The gate to the bullring was open so we walked in to explore. What we didn't know is that the bullring was closed. Fortunately a groundskeeper saw us and called out to us just before they locked it up. Otherwise I guess we'd still be there.
 
Plaza de Toros      
The gate to the bullring was open so we walked in to explore. What we didn't know is that the bullring was closed. Fortunately a groundskeeper saw us and called out to us just before they locked it up. Otherwise I guess we'd still be there.
 
Plaza de Toros      
The gate to the bullring was open so we walked in to explore. What we didn't know is that the bullring was closed. Fortunately a groundskeeper saw us and called out to us just before they locked it up. Otherwise I guess we'd still be there.
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Plaza de Toros      
 
Note the dog on the roof      
 
Note the dog on the roof      
 
Note the dog on the roof      
 
Street vendors      
 
Street vendors      
 
Street vendors      
 
Parque Benito Juarez      
A very beautiful and well maintained (like the rest of SMA) park.
 
Parque Benito Juarez      
A very beautiful and well maintained (like the rest of SMA) park.
 
Parque Benito Juarez      
A very beautiful and well maintained (like the rest of SMA) park.
 
Just outside      
We're in Baja Fish Taquito for a tasty late-afternoon lunch.
 
Just outside      
We're in Baja Fish Taquito for a tasty late-afternoon lunch.
 
Just outside      
We're in Baja Fish Taquito for a tasty late-afternoon lunch.
 
Blue door bakery      
I've included this picture to remind me to mention the nice collection of bakeries in SMA and because it's mentioned in the book On Mexican Time. I learned the baked-goods-shopping process by watching other shoppers in Merida: take a big round silver tray and a pair of tongs, help youself to the baked goods, take the tray to the lady (haven't seen any men yet) to wrap and price the goods, then pay the cashier. Most bakeries are amazingly cheap.
 
Blue door bakery      
I've included this picture to remind me to mention the nice collection of bakeries in SMA and because it's mentioned in the book On Mexican Time. I learned the baked-goods-shopping process by watching other shoppers in Merida: take a big round silver tray and a pair of tongs, help youself to the baked goods, take the tray to the lady (haven't seen any men yet) to wrap and price the goods, then pay the cashier. Most bakeries are amazingly cheap.
 
Blue door bakery      
I've included this picture to remind me to mention the nice collection of bakeries in SMA and because it's mentioned in the book On Mexican Time. I learned the baked-goods-shopping process by watching other shoppers in Merida: take a big round silver tray and a pair of tongs, help youself to the baked goods, take the tray to the lady (haven't seen any men yet) to wrap and price the goods, then pay the cashier. Most bakeries are amazingly cheap.
 
Flock of birds      
 
Flock of birds      
 
Flock of birds      
 
Lots of road work in SMA      
Several streets in SMA are under construction (putting in new pipes? replacing cobblestones?) and they work very late into the evening.
 
Lots of road work in SMA      
Several streets in SMA are under construction (putting in new pipes? replacing cobblestones?) and they work very late into the evening.
 
Lots of road work in SMA      
Several streets in SMA are under construction (putting in new pipes? replacing cobblestones?) and they work very late into the evening.
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