I am settling in more each day to my fantastic Airbnb at Hidalgo 47 in the Centro region of San Miguel. Although I am close to everything I am finding the altitude makes what should be an easy 20 – 30-minute walk into significant exercise. On day 2 I covered 3.5 miles walking and the equivalent of 12 floors of elevation at an altitude of 6000 feet above sea level. I was pretty tired but really no ill effects except having to take it a bit slower than usual and dealing with a little shortness of breath from time to time. Well, pushing 80 you know, one is entitled to take it a little easy don’t you think??
I am becoming a regular at Buen Dia my excellent breakfast cafe right around the corner on del Publito. They serve delicious cafe latte and a full menu of freshly prepared options which range from simply toasted baguette slices with butter and jam to full egg dishes made with locally sourced eggs, bacon and refried beans. I had eggs over easy with refried beans and toast with butter and jam and it was full of flavor and prepared perfectly. On my fourth morning, today, I was greeted as Buenos Dias amigo so I guess that I am now considered a friend which is very nice. The owner and the staff at this lovely place just a 5-minute walk from me make breakfast a real treat. Today I had their version of French Toast which was a sliced baguette, dipped in egg and grilled with butter and maple syrup! Wow, muy fantastico!!
I enjoy just walking around in the city with no traffic signals and no stop signs-can you believe it?? I guess you would call it organized chaos but it actually works out quite well. I have not heard a single horn honked since I have been here, nor have I seen any signs of road rage. Drivers are polite and patient and there are many four-way intersections where accidents could easily happen but I haven’t seen any yet. I think the Latin American approach to life where family and friends are most important and money is secondary, unlike in the USA, contributes to the relaxed attitude of drivers. They know that they will get where they are going sometime and that is OK with them and they are in no hurry. Life here is much more relaxed than at home and almost every night after dark we have a nice fireworks display put on by whom I don’t know but it is colorful and noisy. Noise is a significant part of almost all Latin American urban cultures so one has to accept that. Dogs bark, motorcycles roar by, busses negotiate narrow streets with loud engines, cars pass by playing loud music but at least where I am staying things definitely quiet down as evening falls, except of course for the Fireworks!!