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La Parroquia

It’s so nice to come back to someplace I already know and love, especially such a small town. I know where everything is. I know which streets I like to walk down. I know which cafés are nice to read in and which restaurant bars I feel comfortable at being a single gringa. A coffee shop I loved from before is gone, but there’s a new sushi place near the jardin, so that’s good.

I stayed at Hostal Alcatraz my first three nights here. This was where I spent two weeks about two and a half years ago during my first visit to SMA. One of the women working actually remembered me. They upgraded the bedding since last time.

I kept busy. I went out for drinks with some American and Brazilian women from my room. I got a desperately needed haircut, despite my worrying that my Spanish wouldn’t be good enough to explain what I wanted–it turned out just fine. I wound up chatting with some nice Australians at Los Milagros one night because I was eavesdropping and felt the need to correct them about how the Gipsy Kings are actually from France, not Spain (I’m a friendly pedant, I promise). I went to a movie at Cine Bacco–they screened Ed Wood in honor of the late Martin Landau. I attended my first guided meditation session and plan to go back again.

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My room.

Then I checked into my apartment rental in Colonia San Rafael just outside the Centro Historico. It’s a simple room in a building with a common kitchen and bathroom, but I’m the only one here at the moment and don’t have to share. Since I’m all by myself, I have the luxury of not feeling I need to do anything. In hostels, even if all I want to do is lie on the bed and listen to a podcast or read old articles from The A.V. Club for a couple of hours, I wonder if I’m being judged for being a bad “tourist.”

The thing is, I don’t feel like a tourist in San Miguel. I certainly don’t feel like an expat either, but I’m somewhere in between for the next few weeks. I have a kitchen to cook in and a nice big bed. And towels! Yesterday I went out for lunch but I spent most of my time at the apartment. I read a bunch from Live From New York, an oral history about Saturday Night Live. I watched an HBO documentary about alcoholism and one of Julia Sweeney’s one-woman shows. I looked into flights home but also into possibly extending my time in SMA or Guanajuato. I sat on the terrace with a glass of wine while fighting off mosquitos. Today I’m doing basically the same thing.

I have no big plans for the next few weeks. I’ve hardly taken any photos. I probably won’t update this blog much. But if you need me, I can probably be found lazing around the apartment. Either that, or I’m at Don Taco Tequila again.

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