Wednesday, December 18, 2019

Freezing Cold San Luis Potosí, Mexico, el dieciocho de Deciembre, 2019

What am I doing here?  It was +3, windy and sleeting this morning!  Sleeting!  WTF!  I’m in Mexico, not North Battleford!  And, there’s no heating and Elizabeth does not have a portable heater for me so I spent the morning curled up in a blanket planning my February and March.  I have all accommodation finalized until I go home so that’s a good thing.

I wanted to visit the Centro de los Artes-

to see work by Leonora Carrington, a British born Mexican artist-

and today was the day to go because it’s free.  This museum is one of the most expensive at 50 pesos - $3.45 but to be honest, even that pittance would be too much to pay.

The art is displayed in a former prison, open from 1904 - 1999 and that was the most interesting part of my time there.  Pictures on the wall depict the past-

It’s a great remodel - they kept all the cells and turned them into intimate display rooms-

I do realize now why I was so disgusted with Joan Miro’s work in Zacatecas. Both Miro and Carrington are surrealists - an art movement that started in Paris between World War I and II when people were sad and depressed, the world was mad and everyone was dreaming of a better future.  It became an art form of self expression - an instrument of personal liberation, a release of the creative potential of the unconscious mind with the idea to transform a society.  Bad drugs had to be involved and lots of them!

This is “A Hug” and “The Palmist”-

The woman greets us at the entrance to the museum and “Silence Please”-

“ Gato de la Noche” and “La Inventora del Atole”-

“La Bandolonista” and “La Tamborilera”-

There was some other ‘art’ called Elementos-4(1314ºU+x-/;=).    I’m not kidding-

Jeepers.  I got out of there and walked to Basilica de Nuestra Senora de Guadalupe which was built from 1772-1800.  It is said that priest Miguel Hidalgo officiated mass here.  In 1865 it was occupied by the French as a barracks, and later was used as a warehouse by the government.  I can’t imagine.  In 1871 it was rescued and restored to be a church again starting in 1903-

The Basilica is at the end of a beautiful walking path called Guadalupe Road.  It’s part of the longest pedestrian avenue in North America.  Since the 17th century it has been a space for social meetings - pilgrimages, novena prayers and the annual procession of the Virgen de Guadalupe to the cathedral that they do every Semana Santa in silence-

At the opposite end from the Basilica is the Colon Garden or Garden of Mercy, because the Our Lady of Mercy Convent once stood here.  It has many fountains and actually there’s an aqueduct under the walking path to bring water to all of them-

It also hosts a clock donated by the Spanish colony residing in the city-

After the clock, the garden disappears and it’s a pedestrian shopping street.  Along the way I bought four DVDs- Joker, Lion King, Nobody Runs Forever and After the Wedding for $3.45.  I’ve got a DVD player in my room so if it’s too cold to go outside I can at least watch movies-

I was heading to La Gran Via-

the number 2 restaurant out of  541 in San Luis Potosí, according to Trip Adviser. The reason I didn’t go to the number 1 was because it was too far to walk. From the moment I walked up the steps to the entrance, there were men dressed in long sleeved white shirts and black vests swarming like ants.  There were at least 10 waiters.  They had me sit at a table for four and they attacked it, removing the extra servings.  I asked for recommendations because a place like that has to have specialties.  I started with a basket of warm bread, butter and blended jalapeño peppers which to me tasted like a spicy hummus but apparently it wasn’t.  It was funny too because they brought a bottle of Tabasco-

Next I had tortilla soup-

which came with ‘extras’- chopped onion, cilantro, dried chilies, chicharron and creme-

I added it all!  My main course was squid in its own ink-

The squid was stuffed with rice and that’s a roasted chile skin on top of another scoop of rice.  I would never order it again because when I think of calamari, I think of deep fried rings with delicious garlicy dip - ya I know but that’s what I was imagining.  If squid is cooked properly, it’s not rubbery and this was as tender as could be. I didn’t want dessert but ended up having another house specialty - almond mousse.  I don’t know why places insist on using horrible tasting almond extract.  I hate that shit.  It tasted like thick and creaming icing-

It was an exquisite place to have lupper - never have I had that kind of service. The maitre d’ walked around with his nose in the air telling the waiters to get a move on!  They jumped when he spoke to them.  It was so fancy I even tipped - 20%!  I still ate there cheaper than at Pennydale or The Keg!

Walking home I popped into the Palacio Gobierno which is in Neo-Classical style and was opened in 1824-

It had a huge nativity display-

Piñata type stars are for sale everywhere and some were hanging from the ceiling beams-

The sun eventually came out and if I could stay out of the wind it was okay walking.  Tomorrow is my last day here so there’s one more museum I want to visit and I discovered there’s a Harley store nearby so I’ll go there too and check it out.  The most expensive HD t-shirt I have ever bought was in Puebla, Mexico so I’m hoping they’re a bit more reasonable here or else I won’t be buying one.  Today’s high was 7 and tomorrow it’s supposed to be 18 so here’s hoping!

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