Isang's Blog/

{February 5, 2010}   And then there was sun…

It’s been four days since I’ve been outside on the hostels’ terrace. Four days of waking up to the ever constant sound of rain on the roof, not wanting to roll out of bed having the knowledge that soon I would walk in it. It wasn’t the nice let yourself get soaked in it rain. No, it was torrential downpour with a touch of iciness. Having to make my way to Buen Pastor in the afternoons was the only motivation I had to throw off the covers and get out. I never suffered from seasonal mood swings, nor did I really battle it out mentally to deal with rain. But it only makes sense what with having sunny days for most of my stay here on top of outdoor adventures that I was feeling quite down and out of it, as was the rest of Guanajuato. It becomes a ghost town cuando está lleuviendo. The many alley ways becoming raging rivers, and the stairs are covered by thousands of waterfalls. Only the dogs are brave enough to go down slippery cobble stone streets.

But yes four days and Friday brings back our friend, the Sun. My friend Kent made a point that once you get bit by the mountain bike bug, you just can’t stop wanting more. It was hard not to be out practicing, but I compensated with core circuits in the room and a spinning class. And then, this morning I took advantage of the clear skies. My friend Alejandro and I went out for a ride in the Panoramica. I’ve never felt so lucky in my life to be a tourist with a bike. It’s like taking all the tourist spots (enormous castles, old mines, fortresses), and seeing it in one sitting. There was one part where Alé went off road and all I could think of was “oh how nice to be biking on the slim edge of the ravine”. I’m losing my fear for slim paths. Being that close to an edge where you can see the raging river right below brings out instinctive preventative measures, like wanting to either walk the bike or walk back. But as I’ve become more accustomed to just going with it, my hands are less on the brakes these days. Sometimes I feel like I’m in Mario Kart, constantly steering and swerving near precarious edges. Of course, it’d be nice to have the little cloud guy pull me up if I fall over…

Today marks my sisters’ 24th birthday. If only she were here, we’d spoil her rotten with quesadillas, frijoles and chalupas galore. Oh and don’t forget the mad cheap chelas (cervezas) y tequila. Happy Birthday Sis! Bringing some Mexican flavor back to you in April!

Guanajuato is said to be the Venice of Mexico. With the many educated individuals, actors, musicians and bohemian café owners mingling in the streets, its culture is rich in flavor. Ahorrita the sun is slowly going behind the statue of Pipila (a hero of the revolution) on the distant hill. I’m going to capture the last of the rays and a few memories I’ll take with me after I leave here for this post.

You know there are tortillas and a line of people nearby when you hear the crank of the machine at any local Tortillera. Taking a kilo of those warm discs home is quite the treat :).

Horchata in a bag with a straw! God it’s sipping on cinnamon…lots of cinnamon, and sugar. You just grab a bag of it and walk the streets, being able to swing it around with you without worry of losing some.

When a truck comes passing through on a busy road, guaranteed some boys are riding on the back of it. I plan on doing that soon. Getting around the city is a shared effort it seems. Just jump on the back of the truck and the guy won’t stop and tell you to stop touching his property and wasting his gas with your extra load. They just keep driving..but you have to be fast enough or else your friends will be hooting at you yelling god knows what obscene words (actually I know most of them already…fun stuff to hang with tough mexican boys…you need to speak ‘their’ language).

Finally for today, the Terrace (terraza). I’ve been lucky in coming to Casa Bertha. It seems every night (excluding bone chilling rainy ones), we’re out here admiring the view and sharing la comida. There are a bit of older folks, the traveling type, who when they talk, tell only the most marvelous of stories. Just citing today, I’ve learned more here about Canadian weather patterns, health care system issues and  how much German people eat than back at home (I know, it’s not pop culture, but hey glitz and glam can be overrated sometimes). There’s this German guy who uses the largest plate in the kitchen, the size from my elbow to the tip of my middle finger, filling its base and piling it up 5 inches high, swearing his country men do likewise. I guess I’ll take that as a fact. But yes just sitting on the terrace, sipping on Mexican chocolate and listening to adventures, it’s a 3 month visit dream come true. In return for their stories I share the language of the locals… ¡Chocala! ¡Hijo de su madre, echa te algo! No entiendo ni madres…things translation websites won’t get right and Webster doesn’t provide :). Of course, when hanging with friends, these phrases are quite the informal way of saying things, and the best. Come Sunday plenty more to share! Going to chop up carrots now and do a Mexican pollo dish!

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