Sidewalk shoppers

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SITTING AT A sidewalk table abutting the plaza with a nice café Americano negro and nothing but time on my hands allows me to notice things.

Just up from where I sit are lines of  sidewalk stands where people we call hippies (they don’t care for the term) sell wares like earrings, handmade drums, things you tie around your wrist to look artsy, stuff you move to make the sound of rain, Indian incense, that sort of gear. It attracts tourists, especially on weekends.

I took this shot last Saturday. The two women cannot be from around here. They just don’t look like mountaintop people. They look like big-city gals, maybe from the nearby state capital or Guadalajara or even Mexico City.

I’ve spent 40 years, more than half my life, living in tourist towns. New Orleans, San Juan and now here amid the cobblestone streets and bougainvillea. People from more prosaic spots visit and think, “I could live here,” but then they go home and die in Dubuque.

A couple of pictures

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THIS ATTRACTIVE woman was sitting nearby the other day as I was enjoying my usual afternoon café Americano negro on the downtown plaza. She has a familiar look, but I can’t quite place her.

And the kid? Got no idea.

And later the same day, at night, I was descending the stairwell at the Hacienda on my way to the king bed when I paused at the scene below and said to myself, “That’s interesting. I’ll take a photo.”

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Happiness returns

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The sun is shining. The frog is happy.

IT’S BEEN MIGHTY miserable hereabouts the last few days. No sun, plenty cold, no gasoline. But this day dawned better.

The sun is out and bright. Air is cool, not cold. Gasoline remains hard to find, but it’s an imperfect world in which we reside.

Noonish, I was sitting on the yard patio. That’s its new name, nothing high-falootin’ or esoteric. The intention was to read my Kindle and relax beneath the umbrella, but I took the above photo instead.

Then I came indoors to check on the lunch I was fixing. My child bride was out in her pastry kitchen all morning working on tomorrow’s goodies to hawk on the downtown plaza.

Barbecue chicken in the crock pot, tomato soup (canned Campbell’s. I’m not particular), and a pile of little pastas to round it off.

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Simple meal for simple people.

I spent much of the morning transitioning to a new web browser, Vivaldi, which is quite nice. I shun the big boys, especially anything related to Google. For the last couple of weeks I used Maxthon (second time), but it proved too buggy. Plus, it’s Chinese, and I prefer to dodge stuff from China and Russia. China is communist, and Russia is, well, Russian.

Google is communist too.

Another notable event in this happy day occurred when I heard the garbage truck’s bell  clanging on the back street. Usually, I just ignore it due to laziness because I normally leave garbage bags at a dumpster on my way downtown in the afternoon. But the gas crisis inspired me to get off my duff and walk down the street to the truck with a 15-peso tip.

Late afternoon will find me on the big plaza downtown with a coffee, perhaps a chocolate-chip cookie and the Kindle. A happy day.

My year’s transition

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LATE YESTERDAY, around 6:30, I was standing at this seafood stand on our mountaintop town’s smaller plaza, the one  where the ancient, colonial library abuts. I was enjoying a shrimp cocktail.

Like Christmas Eve, I was flying solo, but there was no hotel waiting. All I had to do was drive home, lock the big, red gate, put on my jammies, write this and slide into the king bed well before midnight.

And that’s exactly what I did. My child bride, yet again, was overnighting with 500 or so of her closest kinfolks, but this time it was downtown at her sister’s home on our big plaza.

One day earlier, on Sunday, we had planned to lunch at a seafood restaurant on the ring road because we knew going downtown would be difficult due to tourist traffic. But the traffic was far worse than we’d imagined. We were stopped dead in our tracks in less than one block from the Hacienda.

We switched to Plan B, which was devised on the spot. We went away from town, not toward it. We drove to another town, Quiroga, to hunt a restaurant. We parked on one end of Quiroga’s main drag and walked almost entirely to the other end before spotting a Chinese restaurant.

And that was lunch. It wasn’t bad.

Returning down the jammed main drag afoot, we sat a spell on a steel bench in Quiroga’s main plaza for a bit of people-gawking. Then, on the way to where the Honda was parked, we bought an ice cream cone and shared. Vanilla with Oreo bits.

Driving toward home, we passed through another little town with the odd name of Tzintzuntzan. Can you say Tzintzuntzan? Just outside Tzintzuntzan, there’s a series of stone-carving businesses.

I stopped and took the photo below. Then we went home.

Yesterday, my child bride was busy most of the day fixing grub for last night’s New Year’s Hoopla with her 500 or so relatives. In the afternoon, I went downtown for a nice café Americano negro on the plaza. Then the shrimp cocktail. The traffic was quite light for some reason.

Then I came home and did what I already told you I did in the paragraphs above. I hope 2019 is a fine year for one and all.

I’ll continue what I’ve been doing for many years, which is not much of anything aside from awaiting the Grim Reaper. I find it suits me.

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