The afternoon I arrived, I wandered down the road and into town. I left too early. The sun was still high in the sky, it was stinking hot, and I felt like a sun-dried tomato. I would have preferred to be soaked with sweat, but with humidity around here is about Zero% so sweat doesn’t really happen. My poor Luna, attired in her heavy black fur coat had it even worse. By the time we had walked the mile into town her tongue was hanging down to her knees.
People in Mexico are very kind. I stumbled across this motley crew of seniors, wisely hanging out in the shade. They greeted me warmly and asked if I would like to join them. That sounded nice, so I did. They also noticed Luna’s tongue and brought her a bucket of water. The chattiest of the three introduced himself as El Padrino, and his sidekicks were his brother and sister. They were an amusing group, but as I left I was hoping I hadn’t said anything inappropriate in front of Father. Certainly El Padrino was the local priest.
After a refreshing diversion, Luna and I continued our walk through town. We stopped by the tortilleria where we got our first demonstration of how tortillas are made. We also bought fifteen pesos worth, hot off the grill, and were they ever delicious. Next, we bought San Ignacio dates from the date lady. They were also delicious. We wandered by Tootsie’s Bar and Grill. Judging by the sign, I was convinced it was an old man’s dive bar. As I was peeking in the window, the girls inside invited me in to look at the restaurant. Far from a dive bar, it is the nicest restaurant in town with a lovely back patio and a delicious looking menu. From there I stumbled into Cafe El Cortijo for a late afternoon coffee. It was a whimsical oasis within a magical oasis. Once the sun was well behind the trees, Luna and I made our way back to our emerald oasis home for the week.
Manuel, the owner, greeted us as we turned into Los Petates. I felt like a schoolgirl, telling him all about my day. When I told him about meetingthe priest, El Padrino, he had a good laugh. El Padrino is the aging owner of El Padrino RV Park, not a priest at all. I assumed the park had closed because of the hurricane. In truth, El Padrino was getting old and a little senile, and his children are either drunk, lazy, or have left town.
Later that evening, after a cool swim in the agua dulce of Rio San Ignacio, we were serenaded by the sweet chattering of the coots and the cooing of doves. As the night progressed the coots and doves were joined by the rustling of the palms in the wind, the gentle lapping of the water on the shore, the buzz of cicadas and grasshoppers, the croaking of frogs, and finally the deep, loud belches of the bullfrogs. It was a true symphony, or in the opinion of some, a cacophony.