Back From San Miguel

When my parents return home from one of their trips, they usually say, “I was ready for home. It’s good to be back in your own bed.”

Here I am back from another of my trips and although I am already ingrained into the routine of my home life, I cannot share my parents’ sentiment. In fact, I often drag myself, kicking and screaming, from my holiday, not wanting to return home. Between you and me (and, of course, the rest of the cyber world), I’ve been known to cry on some occasions.

As my driver took me away from my Bed and Breakfast in San Miguel and was heading for the Leon International Airport, I kept thinking, “Who would be sleeping in my bed tonight? Using my underwear drawer? Washing themselves in my shower?”

Travelling, in this regard, is very difficult. I have even had absurd thoughts of never travelling again because it’s too emotional to pack up one’s things and come home at the end.

San Miguel was blissful. I have journeyed there so many times now that I usually avoid the sightseeing (Been there, done that!) and the picture-taking (Btdt!). Instead, I eat, drink, wander the streets, and visit the jardin, the centro in front of the massive La Parroquia church, and people-watch.

I regularly attend the House and Garden tour every Sunday. It is my chance to travel outside of town and go into peoples’ homes and gardens, getting an excellent sense of how expatriates live in Mexico. I have probably been on 20 of these tours over the past ten years and what I find most amazing is that the majority of the houses I’ve seen incorporate Mexican art (e.g., native masks on the walls) and architecture (boveda ceilings) while the gardens contain native species of plants.

If all this weren’t enough, the money I pay for these excursions goes to programmes for disadvantaged children in SM.


There is usually at least one activity per trip that I do and that I’ve never done before when visiting SM.

On this occasion, it was a cantina tour in which a group of us had the opportunity to visit five well-known cantinas around town. For those of you not familiar with these drinking places, they are meeting stops where one goes just to socialize and get drunk. They stay open until early morning and did not admit women at one time. I got the sense from the bars’ ambience that they are still strictly for men.

Our tour lasted quite early into the evening and included beer and/or tequila. I also sampled mezcal which, to my lack of knowledge, is also extracted from a cactus plant.

We were all pretty happy by the end of our tour.


About randycoates

Randy Coates graduated from the University of Waterloo with a bachelor of arts degree and went on to acquire his teacher’s certificate at the University of Western Ontario. He is currently an elementary teacher in the Toronto District Board of Education.
This entry was posted in Mexican History, Tradition, Travelling and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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