So basically, Kiki and I talk about how awesome our host-mom is all the time.
My gentleman friend from my home university has been getting jealous. Apparently his treats him like the red-headed stepchild. She has told him he’s not allowed to come in her part of the house, he has to be home by ten because she locks the house up and otherwise he can’t get in, he has to be there for meals, etc etc etc, the best part is he has to pay his rent in American dollars.
We’re in friggin Mexico. We go to the ATM and pesos come out. But she expects him to exchange them for dollars and pay her so she can get a better exchange rate from her bank and make like thirty centavos per dollar. Yeah. That’s like three cents.
So anyway, our mom said we could bring Cory to the markets with us on Sunday because she’s so super sweet. First we went to one that’s in the middle of a street on the median. It was full of antiques – I saw one thing there I definitely want to get for one of my housesitters but it was priced a little high. I’ll keep an eye out for another. I don’t want to blow the surprise altogether but… okay, I will.
So of course the vast majority of Mexico is Catholic. There’s a tradition here whereby if some “miracle” happens in your life after you pray to somebody, you make a tiny painting that sort of displays the miracle with some writing underneath where you explain what happens. They’re generally small, usually painted on thin pieces of metal, and always positively charming. Sam, heads up. I think you want one for your house. I think I want one too. But I bought a huge ridiculous chunk of amber to put on a necklace, as well as a belt buckle with who other than the Powderpuff girls on it, it’s so precious and it was one yankee dollar.
We went to another big big market where I bought a cute top and looked at all kinds of nonsense and took some pictures. They sold everything there, from souveniers, to clothes and shoes, to candies and fruits and nuts and meats and … menudo and cow’s feet and pigs heads and… yech. Saw some crazy stuff there. Apparently the third floor is “puras brujerias” – little witchcraft charms and such. Missed out on that floor and intend to head back.
On the way home I saw a sign for tortas ahogadas. I’ve seen it a lot so I asked what ahogada meant. They couldn’t really describe it (Mom nor Lore, they took us out) so I looked it up in my dictionary and it means “drowned.” Which is to say, it’s a sandwich that is literally swimming in red sauce. Mom was all psyched up about it and said she was going to take us to the best stand to get tortas ahogadas.
And now we come to how I got Montezuma’s revenge. But seriously, they were delicious.
It’s cool, we went home and sat in the little plaza and talked about everything in the whole world – different dances traditional to Mexico and how America doesn’t have different regional music or dances, and then how the indigenous people did but gringos don’t, then to politics then to religion then to every other possible thing we could talk about and it was actually quite fun, even if I try to avoid those topics of conversation usually. Eventually it was time for dinner and we had some ceviche Mom made and it was quite nice. She fell in love with my friend from school and when we went to drop him off she was actually really sad to see him go. At the end of the night she came into my room with her serious face on.
Sat down and said how sad it made her to think about my friend’s condition – how his mom doesn’t care for him at all and has all these wacky rules about when and where he’s allowed to be and how she wishes she could take him in too. She said if Kiki and I shared a room there would be a space for him. I ran it by Kiki and she was down, so we said we would run it by my friend the next day…
…AT CLASS! FIRST DAY OF CLASSES! OH EMM GEE!