Escape in January

posted in: Family and Friends, Mexico | 0

Our January 2017 “escape” actually began waaay back in March of 2016. Remember “Our Last Days in the Abacos” blog post where we spent our final day with Sam and Kayda at Lubbers Landing???? While we were enjoying that delicious lunch and a very beautiful day, Sam and Kayda invited us to visit them in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico during the winter. They planned to spend December and January in SMA.

Memories of a terrific day in the Abacos with Sam and Kayda.
Lunch at Lubbers Landing – We always have such a good time together.

As we journeyed north on the ICW in March, April and early May, we thought about it, talked about it, considered it, smiled, and said “yes!” This decision was a big deal for us; we never take vacations that aren’t boat-related or near the ocean – San Miguel is in the middle of Mexico, 6,000 feet above sea level in the mountains. Time for a change of pace?

As we packed, we couldn’t help but notice the temperature on both little weather stations. That’s cold! Good timing for an escape.

Shortly after the holidays, we plunged into serious packing as the temperatures also plunged. Over time, our one-week visit to Mexico had morphed into 3 weeks when we combined the trip with a visit to Florida on the return end to see family members and friends. It would now be 23 days and  5 locations.

January 10th was a long day of travel. We left home at 4:00 am in single-digit temperatures to fly the 2200 miles from Hartford to Mexico City (with a layover in Atlanta). After passing through customs and picking up our checked bag, we got our ride from the airport to San Miguel de Allende, 168 miles farther taking about 3.5 hours. The speed of the drive, close to 100 mph at times, meant that I couldn’t take any photos through the windows, except for this one —

Federales with machine guns in hand. This was the scariest thing we saw the entire time. And it wasn’t scary, just a reminder. Our driver said they were probably heading north to the border. (Just can’t escape that border talk, can we???)

Fortunately for us, the driver dropped us off right at Casa Garza where Sam and Kayda were waiting with open arms.  Sam and Kayda were renting a little “house” right in San Miguel de Allende. Like most of the city, the homes are “town style” with lovely doors tucked into the walls of the city.

The street names at the intersections also have arrows below to let you know which way you can drive. That didn’t really matter much to us because we walked or grabbed a taxi.

Let’s take a tour of “Casa Garza”, the house on Callejon de la Garza. It was a uniquely different housing experience for us, as well as delightful.

The front door of Casa Garza.
That front door opens into a narrow courtyard that leads to the actual door to the house (right photo shows Al at the door.) The left photo is the opposite view – Al waving from the street.
The first floor hallway – The Mexican floor tiles, pottery, and artifacts set the mood from the start.

Here is the really cool feature – spiral stairs! The house is so narrow that the spiral stairs save needed space. There was a total of 4 spiral staircases.

Left – The spiral stairs from the 1st to the 2nd floor. The curtain to the right of the stairs is our bedroom and bath.
Right – The spiral stair from the 2nd floor to the master bedroom.

The 2nd floor, or “main floor” was the kitchen and living room, and another bath.

The colorful  little kitchen. The glass wall at the end overlooks the entrance courtyard.
Two views of the living room. The top one is from the internet, the bottom one obviously includes us, on our “devices” checking for news and updates from home, the world, and friends.

The third set of spiral stairs led up to the master bedroom (Sam and Kayda’s) and then another spiral (#4) passed their room, leading up to the rooftop terrace. Yes, I wrote “rooftop terrace.” SO so very cool!!

Casa Garza’s rooftop terrace. Not only was there a table and chairs, potted plants all around, but there was a grill, a sink, and a washing machine.

Sam and Kayda are “birders.” They know birds and added this hummingbird feeder to the terrace. Waiting and watching for the little creatures became one of our favorite happy hour pastimes. We never had to wait long at all!

Hummingbird and his shadow, which did not scare him off.

Photographing hummingbirds was an exercise in futility, but that didn’t stop me from trying.

The wings are just a blur. Two in one photo in the bottom right shot.
Hummingbirds surely do love their sugar water! This feeder has a red glass flower to mimic natural flowers. Very pretty. I bought one for us and hope it attracts the Connecticut hummingbirds as well.

The view from the terrace was…………….. breathtaking? That sounds so trite. Better than words, take a look —-

Overlooking San Miguel de Allende.
La Parroquia, in the center of the city , a closer look.

It had been a long day, but we were so excited to begin our Mexican adventures that we agreed to head out and explore San Miguel for dinner.

 Al and Kayda are ready for that downhill walk into the town’s center.

We ate a delicious meal on an outside terrace at La Posidita.

Inside decor of La Posidita and a blurry photo of the moon from our dining table.
La Parroquia, at night.
Iglesia San Rafael, next to La Parroquia.

The next seven days were amazing. It may take seven blogs to describe it all, share it all, and save it for memories.

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