The locals refer to this friendly city simply as, “San Miguel.”
For breakfast, J.J. and I walked 1/2 block to Starbucks. Starbucks serves pretty much similar type of items you find in any of their coffee shops around the world. The big difference is this coffee shop is housed in an old building, possibly 200 to 300 years old, that blends into its surrounding. The interior has multiple sitting areas plus there is a beautiful, spacious inner courtyard. Prices are 50% of its US counterpart.
The two of us stopped by to check on today’s events at the Biblioteca Público. Our walk was regularly interrupted as I photographed beautiful churches on nearly every block.
Thomas Kitts and his students were engaged in an oil painting workshop at the Jardin, the main square of the Centro Histórico.
Over the years, San Miguel has attracted renowned national and international artists, and there are a number of art classes of different mediums available throughout the year.
San Miguel is challenging for people who require canes or walkers. Cobblestone and the uneven pavement is difficult especially for people who are unsteady on their feet. The two of us had two poignant encounters this afternoon. A lady was trying to walk up a sidewalk. It was no more than 5 inches for her to scale. She moved to the right then to the left trying to determine the best way to “walk up.” I asked if I could be of a service. She beamed and said, “Yes dear, if you let me hold your hand, I think I can manage.”
My Mother’s daily mantra of “if I cannot walk, I will not travel anywhere” echoed in my heart. I bid farewell, sending her as she continued walking, my healing energy.
The second incident was more difficult. A lady who told me that she’s 82 is visiting San Miguel. From our random conversation, it appeared that she is here to see whether this would be a place to live out her life. With no family, she is searching for a community where she can find English speaking support groups. San Miguel seems to promote this place to Americans and Canadians as a safe, livable, inexpensive place south of the border where medical care is affordable. First and foremost, some ability to communicate in Spanish is a must. Then one must be mobile and it would definitely help if there are two of you. More on retirement and medical/dental tourism in an upcoming blog. I gave her a hug and wished her luck in her search. Unfortunately, San Miguel might be a bit challenging in her condition.
Aloha -- Cathi