Friday we slept late and then got a tour of the heart of San Miguel from Barry and Melissa. San Miguel was founded right after the Spanish conquest of Mexico. It is in an are of cities that are known as the silver cities because they were founded based on silver mining. San Miguel was a wealthy place during the colonial days. It is also called El Corazon de Mexico, The Heart of Mexico, because it was here where the Mexican Revolution from Spain was initiated by Ignacio Allende, a military officer. Hence after he was martyred and independence won, they renamed the town "de Allende" in his honor.
The independence years were not kind to San Miguel and it fell into economic malaise. After WWII, an art school opened, the Instituto Allende and became a place where GIs using the GI bill came for education. This led to the town becoming a center of arts and crafts and an important expat community all of which of led to the town's return to prosperity. It also has retained much of its original colonial street and architecture design and has now become a UNESCO heritage city.
Barry and Melissa live right in the heart of the city and one can be in the center plazas in only 10 or 15 minutes. Our first visit on Friday, we were just getting the lay of the land. Then on Saturday, Wife and I got up early and were out to take pictures in the favorable (for picture taking) early light. San Miguel is a late rising town. Nothing much is open between 7 and 8 in the morning when we were roaming. The streets were pretty much empty, in total contrast to what is was like at midday. By 9 AM it totally changed with the world back in action.
We had breakfast at one of the places that Barry had showed us. They have an unusual dish that is scrambled eggs in a spicy broth - really good. Also they serve hand made corn tortillas. This is of course the national food here. If tortillas were as good as this back home, I would eat them all the time. Even Wife, who does not like corn tortillas, was raving about them. We also had another of those 'tourist food moments'. Wife suggested that we just share the egg dish and we would by some kind of pastry for her so we didn't end up with too much food. So we ordered Chocolate Pastel thinking it was some kind of chocolate croissant. But not no, it was a piece of chocolate cake! Only after we got it did I remember that the Spanish word for cake is pastel. We never dreamed cake would be on a breakfast menu. It was very good however and the sweetness was a nice counterpoint to the spicy chile of the egg dish.
Then it was back to the house to shower and change because we had lunch planned with some Mexican friends of theirs. But before we left Melissa says to me "Michael come!" And soon we are walking out the door, down the hill to where there is a Chiccheronaria. This is a place where they do nothing but make chiccheron - fried pork fat - think cracklings/pork rinds etc. So she buys a big bag which she, Barry, and I start nibbling on.
It was probably a bit too much for me given how much we'd been eating and drinking. My system started giving me issues. We went to lunch and I limited myself to a half of a salad. The vegetable matter was very welcome. As I was still having issues, Barry and I went back to the house after lunch. He gave me a bunch of probiotics which along with time did the trick and I was much better by evening.
We went to dinner with another friend of Barry and Melissa to an Italian place but it had an off day and we were very disappointed in the meal. We all decided to abstain from any serious drinking and went to bed early.