“Back in the USSR . . .

•December 17, 2017 • Leave a Comment

. . . but not Paul & John’s USSR with those Ukraine girls.  Trump’s USSR; as Joie says: NYET my president. I would add NYET my congress. It is astonishing how loathsome republicans can be.

Quiero vivir en el lado feliz del muro.

Upon returning to STL Denver finds an interloper in his yard. Apparently a doe gave birth to fawn while we were in México. He seems not to mind her presence . . .

The problem is that the does attract bucks, and bucks do not hesitate to charge dogs and people.

In an earlier post I wrote about how we were victims of a crime while in México – but the robbery occurred in St. Louis. Bobby, the husband of our housekeeper stole blank checks, which he made payable to Kira (our housekeeper) or to himself, and then forged Joie’s signature. In June I had to fly from San Miguel back to St. Louis to file police report.

Joie and I assumed that the forged checks were the extent of the theft. Later on, though, we did wonder whether Bobby might have helped himself to something else valuable in the house – but I wasn’t going to fly back to St. Louis just to look around.

Arriving home, Joie discovered that her sterling silver tableware and settings, gold jewelry, momentos of a sentimental nature, and other items of value were gone. She called the police and mad a report. They were able to establish that Bobby had sold our stuff to a “second-hand” store – in Missouri, when you sell valuable items, the buyer is required to photograph the items as well as the seller’s id.

Bobby’s case – actually, cases – are winding their way through the justice system.

We initially had believed that the theft was solely Bobby’s doing, but upon discovering how many things were taken we began to question whether Kira wasn’t also involved. The stuff was taken from every imaginable place in the house – cabinets, closets, boxes tucked in the corners of the basement, everywhere. The thieves were systematic and thorough, and it’s hard to believe Bobby searched everywhere without Kira’s knowledge and assistance.

The police have come to the same conclusion. She was arrested in November and faces trial in January:

I cannot say that I am glad to be back in St. Louis, although I deeply appreciate the friends, colleagues and Joie who make things enjoyable more often than I deserve. And there is much to do in preparation for our return to San Miguel which draws ever nearer.


Last Days in Mexico

•December 16, 2017 • Leave a Comment

On one of our very last days in San Miguel the balloons appeared in force just after sunrise. There are four in the picture below, although they are difficult to see. Expand the photo and zoom to spot them. Our casita is the stone wall building in the near distance.

On our last day we packed the car in the morning, then off for almuerzo at restaurante Lolita: enmoladas de pollo (soft chicken tacos in mole). This is the same dish I had at restaurante Lolita when we first arrived in SMA in May. Muy rico!

On our way back to St. Louis we stayed at the Las Palmas Motor Inn, just as we did on the way down to México. In the early morning the sign is eerie.



Cocina Michael Coon

•December 16, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Riding back from the BJX airport in a BajioGo shuttle the other passenger was a very nice guy named Don Forres. We got to talking food and restaurants and he put us on to Michael Coon who does tasting meals in his home in Colonia San Antonio. Joie, Kate (our friend from St. Louis who was visiting) and I contacted Michael and made reservations. About fifteen people joined together in his kitchen. Our seats were at the front edge of the prep island where we could watch Michael and his assistants at work:

The meal began with mini-taco appetizers:

If I recall correctly, the meat was pork belly:

Followed by Kung Pao Wow chicken wings:

Here the Ahi and Yellowtail Poke Rice & Veggie Stack is coming together; first the pyramids of rice:

Then the poke:

With this result:

Next, Steak with Wasabi and Salsa Verde staged:

And served:

Deliciosas! Thank you, Don, for putting us on to Michael’s Cocina!

Mineral de Pozos

•December 16, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Our friend Kate was able to come to México from St. Louis for a week. While she was with us we made an overnight trip to Mineral de Pozos, a “ghost town” from the days of silver mining in the Baíjo region of México’s central highlands. In the 1700s, the population of Pozos is said to have been around 70,000. The War of Independence, starting in Delores Hidalgo and quickly spreading to San Miguel and through the region, marked the beginning of the end of mining in Pozos (and the Baíjo). By the 20th Century, the population dropped to 200 or so inhabitants, but in the recent decade has begun a slow recovery. About 3500 people live in or near Pozos.

Many of the buildings from the Colonial period have crumbled but not disappeared. Partial walls and columns remain throughout the town, lending substance to the description of Pozos as a “ghost town.”

This is the view from our AirB&B located around the corner from the central jardin:

The facade of these buildings remain intact, but behind them it’s all crumbling walls and rubble:

Across the street from our AirBnB stands the Cathedral of Santa Rosa:

Like many churches in México, well-kept and beautiful inside:

And complete with realistic iconography:

A few blocks up the street is this intersection. The building on the right with the “Se Vende” (for sale) sign is the more famous of the hotels in Pozos: Posada de las Minas.

The inner courtyard of the Posada de las Minas is a restful spot:

Reconstructed from the ruins of an old mansion by a brave (foolhardy?) expat couple, the hotel has eight rooms.

As well as stone courtyards (that’s our friend Kate holding up the arch):

And quiet spaces:

Pozos is known for the ruins of mines, and so you might ask “so where are those pictures?” Well, there had been heavy rains and the road up the hillside to the “hornos” (smelting ovens) looked treacherous so we deferred till next time. We’ll return before the rainy season.

A nicely written piece about Mineral de Pozos by John Scherber, the San Miguel author, can be found here.

A Perfect Day in SMA: Hat Shopping and Music

•July 21, 2017 • 2 Comments

Days in SMA sometimes begin like this:

Or like this (OK, this is not the same day, it is the next day). Looking out from the hillside where Denver and I walk in the mornings:

Later . . .

We have been invited to the First Communion Celebration of this young man, Rodrigo. His gift from us is a sombrero. We drove out to Rancho Viejo where we met Rodrigo, his brother Jonathan, and his father Samuel, then came back into town to the Mercado de Artesanías where hats are displayed and sold. We wanted Rodrigo to pick out his favorite.

This is the one he selected:

Joie approves of Rodrigo’s selection:

On to lunch (tortas); Jonathan (left), Rodrigo (middle), and Samuel (right):

Later still . . .

Evening finds us enjoying dinner and music at Bistro Mi Casa in the Instituto Allende: the Gil Gutiérrez and Gabriel Hernandez Quartet.

Gabriel solo:


Percussion & Bass:

. . . Another just about perfect day in San Miguel de Allende!


La Esquina – Museo del Juguete Popular Mexican (Toy Museum)

•July 21, 2017 • Leave a Comment

In Centro is a charming Museum featuring Mexican toys, some old and some recently crafted. The building is on the corner (“La Esquina”) of Nuñez and San Francisco streets. Displays are on three floors with an airshaft in the middle:

A colorful band . . .

Pilas de perros . . . .

Más pilas de perros . . .

A child’s lesson in soteriology:

And then this familiar fellow . . .

I was distracted from the toys by the view from the third floor terrace:

More view . . .

More view . . .

Followed by a peaceful lunch at El Restaurante 13 Cielos (view from our table):

Restaurante 13 Cielos

Correo 34, Centro, Zona Centro, 37700 San Miguel de Allende, Gto., Mexico

+52 415 152 0053

On Trump Jr. and His Meeting with the Russians

•July 18, 2017 • Leave a Comment

Here’s my theory, pieced together from various news sources – especially the Daily Caller:

Trump Jr., Manafort and Kushner were offered a folder of hacked documents whose contents would be damaging to the Clinton campaign. The quid pro quo was a commitment to unwind the Magnitsky Act. The folder was left behind when the Russians left Trump Tower.

The Trump campaign could not release the hacked documents without explaining where they got them. No problem – the Russians gave them to Guccifer who promptly made them public.

Sounds like collusion to me.