I couldn’t believe the dog I woke to this morning. I crouched down to greet Bonita and she jumped up and almost knocked me over! She’s also getting much better at coming onto the couch by herself and will come back even if she jumps off to investigate something. I’m thinking I’m going to have to drape the couches in sheets since she’s starting to want to lounge there even if I’m not in the living room and she doesn’t always stick to her blanket. I don’t want to discourage that since I want her on the couch when I’m there and I don’t want to confuse her about whether or not it’s okay. If she was younger, I’d train her to only come up when I’M there, but at her age, there are battles not worth fighting. It makes me happy to find her snuggled on a comfy surface rather than lying on hard pavement or tiles, even if the tiles are cool.
I had a short errand planned for today. Ever since I went to the Slow Food Market way back in August, I’ve been hankering to go back. But it’s not the kind of place that’s fun to visit if you’re on a super tight budget. Things are going pretty well right now, even with the visa renewal and new passport fees coming up, so I decided that I’d find 90 minutes or so today to pop down there, pick up a few treasures, and then come back to work a full day.
Bonita is doing really well with these short absences. It wouldn’t be fair to her to go out all day, but going out for a few hours is proving to be absolutely fine. Absence makes the heart fonder and all that!
Getting to the Slow Food Market from my house is absurdly easy and convenient. Click on the map to embiggen to see where I caught buses. The bus down is just one house from me and I didn’t have to wait for one this morning. I got off at the corner of Calle 62 and Avenida Cupules and then just had to walk two blocks to the market. When I was done, it was just shy of about four blocks down 72 and Avenida Colon to catch a bus on Calle 60 by the Hyatt Hotel. Then, off at the Instituto Tecnológico on Calle 60 and three blocks to home!
When I first heard about the market, I thought that it was a “Gringo thing,” but not at all. I’d say there were more Mexican vendors than Gringos and customers were about 50/50. The products are all local and mostly “organic.”
I wandered a bit at first to see what was available and then I started to avail myself of free samples. First thing that went into my shopping bag was a jar of pesto. Then, a bakery tempted me with loaves of apple/cinnamon/raisin and sun-dried tomato bread. I knew I’d have to slice them up and toss them in the freezer soon as I got home as there was no way I could eat them before they went bad! I found a basil plant that I need to find a pot to put it in and which I plan to really nurture. I’m almost out of the dried basil my neighbour Caroline had me take with me — really at the rationing phase — so it’s time to grow and dry my own!
Some Americans were selling pork ribs, pulled pork, and bacon. I was able to sample everything and it was hard not to buy one of each! But I have not bought bacon since I came to Mexico (!) so I splurged on their maple bacon. Next to last stop was one of the many vegan vendors, a lady who had nice trays of prepared lunches. I sampled a bunch of things and bought a tray of her lentil cakes with a side of cherry tomatoes. Finally, I sampled some spread made of cocoa and agave syrup and splurged on that.
The bacon was $80, the chocolate spread was $155, I believe the bread was about $140 for two loaves, the pesto was around $80, the basil was only $30, and the lentil cakes were $50. So I spent about $535 (about 37CAD). The chocolate spread was really the only thing that made me go woah, but this was a morning where I promised myself I’d buy anything I sampled that I liked, so I did!
I hadn’t eaten before setting out. There are a couple of restaurants at the market, but the one that was most appealing for breakfast I could not figure out how to get service at, even when asking the harried waiters. I decided that they didn’t need my business and instead found a couple running a tiny stand selling burritos, tacos, and tostadas. I got two tacos with chicken, peppers, rice, beans, cheese, pickled onions, and hot red sauce — think of Tex-Mex-style burrito filling on corn tortillas! I paired those with a delicious strawberry and watermelon agua fresca, all for $50. YUM! Sorry for the lack of pictures — my hands were full!
I left around 9:15 and was back around 10:45, mostly thanks to not having to wait for buses. Nice easy trip! I definitely could not justify going to Slow Food every weekend, but hopefully it’s a treat that I’ll be able to fit in every four to six weeks from now on.