Once Upon a Time in Mexico

I collapsed on the couch with Bonita when I got off work around four. It was much too late for a nap and too far to bedtime to stay there. I decided I had enough on my Bodega Aurrera list to make it worth trying to get there and back on the bus. What a success that was! I had no wait time worth mentioning at either end and it was practically door-to-door service — much less effort than wrestling the truck out of the parking bay!

On the way home, I remembered that it’s Monday and that La 21 would be closed, so there went my supper plans. I had a nice German sausage at home to convert into a hot dog, but nothing even remotely bread-like to use for that purpose and not even any flour on hand to whip up a flat bread. I dropped the groceries off at home, told Bonita I’d be right back, and headed into the growing darkness to get what I needed for dinner.

My destination was not a store. This is Mexico, after all, where the best treasures are rarely found in stores. Sometimes, they roam in the dark streets of your neighbourhood, ringing a bell to warn you they are coming. And sometimes like tonight, they are found under a lamp post and surrounded by a bunch of men chatting.

The cart they were leaning against was promising. I sized up the group and called out to the man at the head of the cart, “You selling bread?”
“Sorry, ma’am. All out of French. Got some pan dulce and a croissant left, though.”
“The croissant would be perfect, thanks!”

He bagged up the croissant, I passed over 5 pesos, and then I walked the few blocks home in inky darkness. Not the supper I’d planned, but a sweet bready Mexican reinvention of the croissant plus some wurst plus some mustard wound up being the quick and easy supper I needed after a long day.

“French” (frances) is what passes for a baguette around here and seems to be at least as if not more popular than tortillas! You can get them fresh at almost any little convenience store, race out into the night to catch a cart when you hear its bell in the distance, or you can sometimes stumble onto a scene that feels like a euphemism for a drug deal — as it should, because that carby goodness is addictive! 🙂