Archive | August, 2012

San Miguel de Allende, El Chorro

28 Aug

San Miguel de Allende, El Chorro

Chorro.jpg

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Present Day

28 Aug

Present Day
When the weather permits, and it always permits, I go into town during the week to check on book sales, straighten them up, and take note of who needs what for delivery the next day or so. While I’m downtown I spend some time people watching. I find it instructive to just sit and watch people passing by. I live life by observing. You can tell which Americans are residents by the way they walk. Heads down, not looking left, right, or up so you know they’re going somewhere, they’re not sight-seeing. (You used to be able to tell by the cameras strapped around people’s necks whether they were tourist or not, but with the plethora of cell phones with cameras around that’s no longer the case).

You can take note of the number of Mexican tourists, by the same means, and they are usually surrounded by the whole famdamly. Mexicans won’t go anywhere by themselves! My Mexican friends can’t believe that I travel routinely around the whole country by myself. And that used to include cantinas, back when I was trying to drink Mexico dry. (I didn’t succeed, but I got them working overtime in Tequila, Jalisco).

I’ve aquired a taste for Mexican coffee, Americano (fuerte, por favor), is best, and usually end my trip downtown with a cup before heading home on the city bus (urbano) which means more people watching, and some eavesdroping too.

The urbano is usually full of kids going to school for the afternoon session, and for some reason they like to stand. Fequently they’ll ignore empty seats, blocking the aisle for the adults who are trying to get by.

Frustrated one day I morphed into an NFL lineman, and plowed through them knocking them out of the way. some even cascaded out of the bus door. Another day I observed a smart a– teenaged kid getting on the bus leaving a Great Dane outside. The poor dog had to run through traffic to keep up with the bus, and the idiot kid laughed, and laughed until I slapped the snot out of him… I’ve got to control my temper, I guess.

San Miguel de Allende, Cobblestone Street

27 Aug

San Miguel de Allende, Street Scene

The Early Years

27 Aug

The Early Years
I didn’t have anything special to do, so I just walked around learning Spanish words. At first just nouns. The little corner stores were good places to try out my Spanish, and I found that there was only one brand of cigarettes that I’d ever heard of. Ralieghs. They were the regular sized cigarettes like the Lucky Strikes or Camels I was used to seeing, but filtered. I tried some, and found them to be Ok with just a little cigar taste to them. They were the most expensive brand though at one peso a pack of twenty (eight cents).
The beer and pop was in rusty metal boxes with Coca Cola, Corona, or Victoria painted on them, and were filled with sodas and beer nestled in water. Evaporation providing the only cooling available. The counters were full of hand made cookies and candies. Chewing gum came in tiny celophane wrapped chicklets four to a package, Adams being the most prevalent brand. I found out that at “Super Sanchez,” you could buy Milky Way bars.
Where ever I went I became the center of attention. Everyone wanted to try out the few English words that they thought they knew. But they were actually happy when I spoke to them in my stumbling Spanish. There were no shortage of teachers among them who would correct me, making me pronounce words correctly. They didn’t hurt my feelings though because they always smiled when they corrected me, and genuinley seemed pleased when I said it right.


I wandered into Juarez park on day and was admiring the pretty red flowers in huge beds being tended by several gardeners. The beds were being water by irrigation, water running down small trenches dug across the dirt paths of the park. I asked the name of the flowers, and was told amapolas. Amapolas in my dictionary were poppies. The park was full of heroin poppies!

San Miguel de Allende, Las Monjas Dome

25 Aug

San Miguel de Allende, Las Monjas Dome

Catalog

25 Aug

Papelandia Publishing Catalog

Gringo Guides
A Gringo Guide to Living in San Miguel de Allende – A complete 150 page, perfect bound book. A guide, and advice for living and enjoying San Miguel de Allende as a resident or a visitor. A fun filled, Cartoon illustrated day-to-day guide with stories chronicalling the authors «Early Years» in San Miguel. Even long-term residents are guaranteed to find information they never knew before, supplied by a 50+ year Bilingual/Bicultural American resident of San Miguel. GG-101 – $20.00 plus $12.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…to Mexican History – A 354 page, complete History of Mexico with historic pictures. An easy read to learn the incredible history of the Republic from the Conquest until Today. The places, events, and the characters that played out their roles in one of the bloodiest histories ever recorded. Interspersed throughout are accounts of events taking place in the U.S. and the rest of the world simultaniously to give one a sense of the time. GG-103 – $24.95 plus $19.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…to the Mexican Revolution – A 56 page, coffee table style book with the complete, bloody history of the Mexican Revolution 1910-1921, with lots of great historic pictures. GG-105 – $16.95 Plus $6.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…to the Cristero Rebellion – A twenty-eight page book with the complete forgotten history of the Rebellion against the Calles Administration 1926-1930 in which the Pope closed the Mexican churches, and the government waged modern warfare against their own people over religious differences. hundreds of thousands of people died and a half million people migrated to the U.S. GG-106 $14.50 Plus $6.95 Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…to Witchcraft – A 30 page booklet about the practice of witchcraft in Mexico now and in the past. Implements, herbs, and spells used in Mexican witchcraft told by a 50 year resident. GG-108 $7.95 Plus $2.95 International S&P. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99 (Includes the following book in the same download)

…to Pulque, Mescal, and Tequila – A 30 Page booklet about these spirits from production to imbibing. The History surrounding the discovery and modern production. GG-109 $7.95 Plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99 (Includes the previous book in the same download)

…to a Bullfight, a Mexican Rodeo, and a Cock Fight – A twenty eight page book that serves as your personal guide to these Mexican sports events. Describing the tradition, the culture, and the mechanics of the events to promote understanding of them. GG-107 $14.50 Plus $6.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…to a Mexican Kitchen – A full 200 pages of time honored, traditional Mexican Recipes, with food and food preparation glossaries. Hundreds of Full-Color pictures, and it’s spiral bound for the cook’s convenience. The book Includes Party Snacks, Gala Banquets, and Mexican Adult Beverages too. GG-102 – $24.95 plus $18.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, for $9.99
…to: Salsas y Chilies – A 28 page booklet with everything you should know about chilies, and naming the most popular Mexican variaties. Including how to prepare them. Seventeen delicious recipes for Salsa with full-color pictures. GG-102-A – $7.95 plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

…to: Mexican Beverages – A 28 page booklet to Non-alcoholic, and alcoholic beverages alike. Recipes from teas; coffee; hot chocolate; punches; egg nog; cold thirst quenching, cooling drinks and fruit ades to 27 different, popular, alcoholic ones. GG-102-B – $7.95 Plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

…to Soups and Salads – A 28 page booklet wth 10 delicious recipes for popular Mexican soups and 11 scrumptious Mexican recipes for salads including full- color pictures. GG-102-C – $7.95 Plus $2.95 Internat. Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

…to Mexican Desserts – A 24 page booklet with 20 fabulous recipes for some of the most popular and delicious recipes of Mexican desserts. GG-102-D – $7.95 Plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99
…to Throwing a Mexican Fiesta – A 24 page booklet with 5 delicious Mexican recipes for appetizers, botanas; 11 great recipes for Mexican dips and spreads; and 8 wonderful, time-saving recipes for Mexican microwaves treats. GG-102-E $7.95 Plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

Walking Tours
Walking Mexico’s Colonial Heartland – A full 123 pages of History – Legends – Step-by-Step Walking Tours of the world famous Spanish Colonial cities of: San Miguel de Allende; Guanajuato; Querétaro; and the history of Mineral de Pozos, the Ghost Town. These are 450 + year old cities protected and preserved in the Spanish Colonial style of the XVII and XVIII centuries. They are living, breathing cities, full of life and culture, but mysteriously silent about their history and legends. With this book you will appreciate fully your visit to them. WT-101 – $10.00 plus $12.95 International S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

Walking Tours of San Miguel de Allende – A 30 page book of the History, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460 year old Spanish Colonial city, a National Monument. The booklet has a four-color, slick cover suitable for saving as a souvenier, and includes lots full-color pictures. WT-102 – $16.50 Plus $6.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

San Miguel’s History – A twenty-four page booklet of the history of San Miguel de Allende from the settlement through the War for Independence with historic pictures. WT-101-A – $7.95 Plus $2.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com.

…of Guanajuato – A 30 page book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-103 – $16.50 Plus $6.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of Santiago de Querétaro – A 30 page book of the History, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-104 – $14.50 Plus $6.95 Int. Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of Morelia: The City of Music – A 30 page book of the History, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-105 – $14.50 Plus $6.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of Puebla de Los Angeles – A 30 page book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-106 $14.50 Plus $6.95 Int. Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of Taxco de Alarcon – A 30 page book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-107 – $14.50 Plus $6.95 Intnational Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of San Luis Potosí – A 30 page book of the History, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The booklet has lots of full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-108 – $14.50 Plus $6.95 Intnational Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…of Zacatecas – A 30 page book of the History, Legends, and Step-by-Step instructions for touring this 460+ year old Spanish Colonial city. The legends are authentic, and have been handed down generation after generation.The booklet has lots of historic and full color pictures, and is suitable for saving as a souvenier. WT-109 – $14.50 Plus $6.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

Driving Adventures:
Day Trips From San Miguel – A 56 page coffee table style guidebook to easy one-day trips with historic and full-color pictures. Visit Acambaro, Guanajuato’s oldest city; Dolores Hidalgo, the Fountain of the Independece movement, La Luz, Guanajuato’s Other Ghost Town; Cerro de San Pedro, San Luis Potosí’s Ghost Town, and Jaral de Berrio, the ruins of an historic Hacienda. DA – 102 – $16.95 Plus $7.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…Hidalgo, and the Ancient city of Teotihuacan – A 56 page coffe table style guidebook with the history of the State, and instructions for driving around the state of Hidalgo with stops in: Huichapan, Alfajayucan, Zimápan, Ixmiquilpan, Tula de Allende, Teotihuacán, Pachuca, Mineral del Chico, Real del Monte, Atotonilco El Grande, Metztitlan, Molongo de Escamilla, Tlahuitepa, Huazalingo, and Huejutla de Reyes. with lots of full-color pictures. DA – 104 – $16.95 Plus $7.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…Mexico’s Colonial Ghost Towns – A 56 page coffee table style guidebook of the history and legends of: Mineral de Pozos, Gto.; Mineral La Luz, Gto.; Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosí; Cerro de San Pedro, San Luis Potosí. This book contains lots of historic and full-color pictures of these XVI, XVII, and XVIII century Silver and Gold mining cities. DA – 101 – $16.95 Plus $7.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…Michoacán, Touring the Tarascan Empire – A 56 page coffe table style guidebook with the history, and instructions for driving the state of Michoacán with stops in: Ihuatzio, Tzintzuntzan, Santa Clara del Cobre, Pátzcuaro, Janitzio, Zrahuén, Santiago Tingambato, Uruapan, Paricutín, and Paracho with lots of historic and full-color pictures. DA – 103 – $16.95 Plus $7.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…in Mexico’s Huasteca – A 56 page coffee table guide book with a complete driving tour of the Adventure and Ecotourism Paradise that is the Huasteca area of Mexico. Includes areas in the Mexican states of: Tamaulipas, San Luis Potosí, Querétaro, Hidalgo, Puebla, and Veracruz. Includes information on White water Rafting, Kayaking, Mountain Biking, Rock Climbing, Swimming, Spelunking, Hunting, Fishing, Hiking, and Camping. With lots of historic and full-color pictures. DA – 105 – $16.95 Plus $7.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

Adventure and Ecotourism
…in the Copper Canyon – A 38 page coffee table style guide book with the history, accomodations, and tours of the entire Copper Canyon System located in the State of Chihuahua. Lots of full-color pictures and Driving Adventures down into the depths of the Urique and Batopilas Canyons. AE – 105 – $16.50 Plus $7.95 International Shipping & Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…with Mexico’s Glittering Monarchs – A 38 page coffee table style guide book with the Complete story on the migrating Monarch butterflies. Where they are, how to get to them, and how they were found. A Driving Adventure loaded with full-color, full-page pictures. AE – 106 – $16.50 Plus $7.95 Int. S&H. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…in San Miguel de Allende – A 36 page coffee table style guide book with the Complete possibilities for Adventure and Ecotourism sites to visit while you’re in San Miguel de Allende with lots of full-color pictures. Includes Horseback riding, ATV Rentals, Hot Air Baloon rides, Mountain bike tours, hiking tours, touring the Botanical Gardens , and the Cañada de La Virgen pyramid. AE – 107 $16.50 Plus $7.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

…in Edward James’ Surrealistic Garden, Las Pozas, Xilitla – A 28 page coffee table style guidebook of the Surrealist Sculture garden of Edward James with lots of full-color pictures and a map of the complete site. AE – 101 $16.50 Plus $7.95 International Shipping and Handling. Order by email: wjconaway@yahoo.com, or download from Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com for $9.99

All of these books are available in the San Miguel de Allende Library Gift Shop, the Casa de Papel Card Shop, Garrison & Garrison bookstore, La Deriva bookstore, and Online at: http://www.amazon.com and barnes and Noble for downloads. Follow the author on Twitter @williamjconaway, and Facebook/williamjconaway.

San Miguel de Allende, Main Plaza at Dusk

22 Aug

San Miguel de Allende, Jardin by Night

San Miguel de Allende, Aerial View

22 Aug

San Miguel de Allende, Aerial view Paroquia

Present Day

22 Aug

My day begins at 7:00 A.M. every day when I wake up, trudge across the house, and climb the stairs to my office. I love my office. All my toys are there. I flip on the coffee maker, and look out my window at the Parroquia. I search the skies for hot air baloons. I love seeing them in the dawn’s light, diving on the church towers.
Turning on the computer, and tuning in Fox News on the TV, I begin my day by checking Conservative news sites. Business, read that book sales, are way down since the Democrats came to power in the U.S. Everything that happens there effects us down here.
The sunrise is beautiful as always, a little later for me as the sun has to rise over the mountain behind us. And I begin writing on my blog.
New writing projects are on hold because of the economy, the lack of tourism, but everyday I see more and more gringos on the street that I haven’t seen before. I used to be practically the only one in town in the off-season. San Miguel used to be a ghost town the day after Semana Santa, Easter week, and stayed that way until July when the family tourism began. People used to drive down with the whole family to spend the summer. Not anymore. The news media, and their negative reporting about life in Mexico has ruined that.
I remember one winter season when things were going great guns. Barbara Walters did two specials on Mexico City crime. Tourism came to a dead stop. Reservations were cancelled, and it was all over for that year.
Fear, inspired by the news media, is really irrational. People forget about the level of crime in their own cities, they ignore the fact that Mexico City is a four hour bus ride from peaceful San Miguel, and they tend to lump groups of people into categories. I guess its easier than actually doing your own research.

San Miguel de Allende, at Dusk

22 Aug

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