Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Mercado Madness

Stepping off the plane in Guadalajara, I was greeted by the most amazing sunrise I have witnessed in a long time. Ay, Dios Mio! what a gift. Can you picture me, nearly the last one off the plane thanks to my seatmate who I think, wanted to take it slow. No bother, I expected a wait upon clearing customs, and I don't tend to feel impatient in these, hurry up and wait situations. And, I knew why I was being given the gift of time to exit when I stepped out the door to see this:
I know, right?
So, back to the picture in your head of me, bleary eyed from lack of sleep and extended travel time, pausing at the top of the exit-the-airplane stairs, doing a little snapshot while my seatmate carefully decends in front of me. She was taking her time, and I was taking my selfie lol.

On my last trip to Mexico, it was in the airport leaving the US for Guadalajara that it really hit me- no habla espanol. I may have learned a bit more, gained some confidence, or just been made less unaware of my transition between countries, and it wasn't until I got into the customs line that I needed to consult my dictionairy- to complete the customs forms.
Once I got my stamp- and searched in vain for where the heck did they stamp my passport last time- it was time to head out the double doors and look for mi padre. I didn't expect him for another half hour or so, and took the time to sort through some of my bags, grabbing goodies like my camera and the muffins I'd made at home out for the ride home to Tenamaxtlan. With a little eyeliner and some hair poofing, and to heck with the rest, I had just completed my rearranging and looked up to see his familiar face with the kind of smile that is rare enough to be treasured on it. As our driver, Pancho pointed out, "many years were gone, and happiness came in their place, in the instant he saw you (as in, me)." Aww, wasn't that a sweet comment?
Off we went to the historic district for El Mercado, and this time I knew just what (not) to look for. I'd brought along a bracelet that I've wanted to wear ever since I received it many years ago. Trouble is, my tiny little wrists just swim in it. So, our first was to the jewelry repair guy. Ok, now just for a moment, think to yourself what that would entail in you hometown... would you walk in, have the bracelet fixed right in front of you, try it on, have it adjusted again, and then walk out of there with your now removed gold links in hand a d a perfectly fitting bracelet for roughly $3? Me neither=instant impression of awesome.
Was I ever glad I'd done that bit of hair poofing because in that same hour I was given another gift- pics with mi padre! Although they are not "perfect" i.e. one is blurry, one I'm not looking at the camera, and two were taken from afar but don't include all of the statue behind us, I will always look at them and smile. In part because of their rarity- last time I was out I got the same far away statue pose, but the last time my father and I were photographed sitting with each other was during my first visit to Dodge City almost 15 years ago. Dang it, he looks younger and I most definitely do not... perhaps if I were to trim my mustache, it would have the same effect!!!
Well, our breakfast was delicious, enchiladas con papas y queso. Conversation was fun to follow along the best I could and Pancho knew all the hit songs playing (in English) over the sound system of our restaurant. I learned that my father once considered that line of work and thought he "used to" cook really good. No wonder those carne asada breakfasts from last year still remain as some of my favorite memories :-)
Also fun to follow along were these two men as they searched out the best place for me to purchase some huaraches, or authentic Mexican sandals. Found neutral colored pairs I'd have bought at two different places, one pair was 200 pesos and the other 250. Not bad prices, it works out to be the equivalent of between $11 and $17 depending on the current exchange rate. This has long been one of my favorite past times- trying on shoes. Didn't get either pair but it was still fun to look, get prices, etc. I also found out later on that the two pairs I had picked out both had plastic soles- now why didn't I see that!
Perhaps I'll have some more shopping opps while here. I'll be looking for small festival dresses por mi hijas, a map of Tenamaxtlan and the area, perhaps some coffee cups or a tee shirt por mi esposa, zapotos y las blusas por yo, y mas cuentos por tu, mis amigos.

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