San Miguel de Allende a.k.a. SMA
On our first foreign adventure, Paul and I traveled to San Miguel de Allende (SMA) to celebrate his birthday in 2007. We returned in 2013 to celebrate my birthday as I recuperated from surgery. It's hard to believe how much this charming colonial town, a UNESCO World Heritage sight and Travel and Leisure's 2017 Best City in the World, has changed.
Our first few days
The place we rented through San Miguel House Rentals was just as pictured, with a beautiful patio extending the living area. It was a great area to relax in the late afternoons or in the morning when doing a little computer work. BUT, first we had a hitch to work out. When I signed the 5 page rental agreement in October, I didn't think about or absorb the fact that it said no children and max 4 people. Two months later, we arranged for David, Chelsea and Rufus to visit us in SMA. When I asked our rental agent to book a car for them, she asked me where they were staying, reminding me of the contract. After an anxious night pondering this information, Paul and I decided to make a personal visit to the agency. It was a bit of the scene with the agent defending her actions, as she should. I just wanted to beg for leniency in the rules and did so with the American co-owner. I even got a little teary explaining my mistake. She talked to the owner, who said YES! and cleared the way for a great week with our kiddos.
I must mention the weather we had in Mexico. Glorious for two months. It started raining one night while we were walking home from a rooftop dinner at . We were prepared with our plastic ponchos (one of the good results from my over-packing spree). The rain continued the next morning, so we took a taxi to bridge. However, that 24 hours contained the one and only rain event that we experience in Mexico. Yes, we played bridge except for the week that the kiddos visited. It was great fun and we met several new people at the Bridge Studio of San Miguel.
SMA with a toddler--Carnival Sunday, the Trolley and Sticks and Stones
Although shopping, gallery hopping and fine dining are great for adults, in a city of cobblestones where a stroller can be an iffy prospect to maneuver, it turned out that Rufus was pretty easily entertained. Chelsea and I got out early the first day for some shopping and breakfast. Then we all went out to enjoy SMA celebrating Carnival. The big prank was smashing confetti eggs on people's heads and Rufus got in on the action.
Poor David was ill for half of their visit, so he missed the trip to El Pato, the Barbacoa restaurant where I thought Ru would have a blast. When Paul and I had visited the previous week, we were virtually the only people in the restaurant. This Valentine's day, at 11 a.m. the place was packed, the parking lot was busy, but Ru found rocks and dirt to entertain him.
It was great to share the city with Chelsea, Rufus and David. Visiting Benito Juarez Park and the fabulous playground was great, until the school let out for recess on the playground. We were quickly overtaken by lots of kiddos, so we ambled home. Rufus loved the our rooftop patio. He played for hours on the deck, enjoying the lavender, the bees, the weather and the freedom.
That week we celebrated Valentine's Day. David, unfortunately, continued to struggle with a virus, so Chelsea and I went for massages and margaritas. She slept her best sleep that night and woke up to find David feeling well enough to take the "trolley bus" for a tour. With Rufus' great love of trucks and buses, this was high adventure, although he did find time for a nap. Paul was awesome, taking care of Rufus when David was under the weather, so Chelsea and I could go out on shopathons.
Paul engineers a Mexican door
Some of you know of our adventures in Nicaragua, where we got locked into our bedroom in our jungle rental on our first night there. More on this another time! Rufus is getting taller and he could open the doors in the apartment. Both of the doors to the bedrooms required keys to unlock them. We were babysitting for Rufus on the last night of their visit, when he learned to lock the door. And then he closed it, with the key inside the room, locking us out of our bedroom. My engineering husband to the rescue. Check out what Paul can do with two coat hangers.
More great adventures and relaxation to come in SMA, beautiful, colonial town.