Tuesday, September 26, 2006

San Miguel de Allende's Tianguis (Street market)

This morning I ended up sleeping in again. My new alarm clock went off at 4am, and I went back to sleep until 9am. Or maybe it was 8am. I still haven't figured out the time zone here. There don't seem to be any clocks in this house. Oh well. Even though I missed the Botanical Garden tour, I decided to head out in that direction, to the big street (on, in this case, parking lot) market. The tianguis.

I got off the bus at one stop too soon, in front of the big Gigante mall building, and ended up walking around the building the wrong way. At first, all I would see what about 20 vendors, and I thought, "oh, this is so tiny. Even Las Varas's has a bigger market that this!". Then I got all the way around the corner and saw that it was huge, and the the buses were coming into the parking area to drop people off. Could have saved myself a few steps. I would guess there were 600 or 700 venders there, but who knows. It's hard to count in such a large market. It was really different that the tianguis in Patzcuaro, when the booths are right in town, in the center of the things. There the booths and stalls block off whole streets. And there were lots of inexpensive craft things at the Patzcuaro market, and I didn't see any at the tianguis today. I may have missed them though.

I had three favorite booths today. This one was selling long stings of some kind of sweet/dulce. I loved the colors and the display.
And a lady selling vegetables had made little artistic piles of her produce.
And a gentleman was selling all kinds of silver (looking and real) medallions and other things. I loved all the items, especially the religious medals, but they were all way out of my price range.
Then there were lots of restaurants, used clothing, ....., including speciality food vendors, like the families selling juice drinks from their cart, and a man who sold these gelatin desserts from a tray.
There was a shrine for Guadalupe in the center of the market, surrounded by roses, which are her symbol. It took awhile to get a clear shot of the shrine because many people were paying their respects to her. And then two little boys decided they wanted to be in the picture.
And for one last photo: This gentleman was selling about 10 plants. Vincas (a weed around here) in tin cans, and about a dozen other used objects. I asked if he would take 15 pesos to letting me take his picture. He got very excited, and insisted I take ten, which I did. But he seemed to keep moving, and none of them turned out very well. He loved looking at himself on the LCD screen, and called his "old guy" buddies over to look at them. I walked away quickly after a couple of minutes and numerous requests for pictures. My last comment was "I would only take their pictures with no ropa, (no clothes)". They looked stunned for a minute, not sure what I said, and then laughed and laughed and I escaped.

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