Monday, August 01, 2011

my greening

Pátzcuaro smells green.  Or, at least, the rural areas do.

I drove up from San  Miguel on Sunday.  Before those of you with a Mercator-fixation correct me that I actually drove south, and, thus, “down,” let me point out I gained 1000 feet in altitude over San Miguel.  In my book, that is up.

In the last few years, Mexico has invested in its infrastructure -- with roads being at the top of the list.  As a result, most Mexican primary roads make American road engineers a bit envious.

What was once a five hour drive from San Miguel to
Pátzcuaro can now easily be driven under three hours.

And it is not one of your Nebraska see-forever-to-the-horizon drives.  Lakes.  Mountains.  Valleys.  God must have been in a Pissarro mode when he designed this portion of Mexico.

It was almost as if I had driven from Arizona though Colorado and New Hampshire to central Oregon.

When I arrived on Sunday, Pátzcuaro’s large square (plaza grande) was filled with Mexican tourists.  Middle class families enjoying a day in the sun.  Including, watching the essence of Pátzcuaro’s cultural tourism -- La Danza de los Viejitos, the dance of the old men.

Having fulfilled my brief tourist duties, I sat down with Felipe for a quick conversation.  He then settled me into my home base for the month.  (More on that in later posts.)

As some of you know,
Pátzcuaro was my first choice as a place to live when I was planning my retirement in Mexico.  I almost bought a house here four years ago.

This trip will give me an opportunity to show you what might have been.  And, perhaps, what might be.


Nita Laughlin said...

Los Viejos may be touristy, but I did enjoy them! If only I could move that fast!

Kim G said...

F and I visited Pátzcuaro in January 2007 and loved it. We met Felipe and the Lovely Lady Zapata, as well as the little Vaquero and the Widow Woman.

But I ended up speaking almost purely Spanish with Felipe, out of courtesy to F (who was of course an integral part of the conversation) and the Lady Z, et al. But I left a smidgen disappointed as I had both wanted to hear his  southern accent, and also his English diction, given that his writing is so fabulous. But I suppose that will have to await the next visit.

We also quite enjoyed Morelia, where we spent a night in a lovely hotel on the main plaza.

I hope you have as nice a time as we did.


Kim G
Boston, MA
Where we are suffering from Zapata Tales withdrawal.

Felipe Zapata said...

Shucks, Kim. If'n youda let me know all that, I woulda spuke to you in cracker tawk. Cuz I dang shore tawk it mo bettah dan I doo espanyol.

Felipe Zapata said...

And Pee Ess: Duh fun continyous over on de Unseen Moon but it jest ain't gut nuttin to doo wid dem meskins.

Ronda Grimsley said...

We so enjoyed Patzcuaro and the surrounding areas. We still talk about the Dance of the Old Men - the boys do a pretty good imitation :)

Don Cuevas said...

Nice place, Pátzcuaro; if you like a cool temperate climate, green clad mountains, lovely to look at lakes, interesting local culture, relative tranquility. Unfortunately, the majority of restaurants are mediocre.

We've been in the area nearly 6 years now.

Saludos, Don Cuevas

Steve Cotton said...

I can certify that the soft vowels of Georgia are a part of Felipe's life.  I didn't even try my Spanish with him -- though I did with the Lady Zapata.  I suspect to her amusement.

Steve Cotton said...

Touristy they are.  But I always enjoy seeing them.

Steve Cotton said...

To all counts, I plead guilty.  And San Miguel is close enough for frequent cultural visits.  Or is it the other way round?

Steve Cotton said...

And I am beginning to think the target of the dance is no longer old Spaniards. I seem to notice some of my colleagues being spoofed.