I went to bed on May 31st and woke up to an entirely new world the next morning that suspiciously resembled life before COVID-19.
Although people are still wearing masks and practicing physical distancing, most of the smaller shops that have been closed for months have now reopened. Restaurants are also now open for dining in.
A friend came in from Zacatecas and we went to Terraza Italiana for coffee. In the photo below you will note the physical distancing I observed.The tianguis In Las Flores was in full swing this morning. Much more than just food was available for purchase. Physical distancing was not at all evident.My feelings are quite mixed about this reopening. I would have preferred a more gradual reopening in stages. By the same token I enjoyed sipping freshly brewed coffee in a cafe rather than the instant Nescafé which has been my norm for several weeks now. It’s also nice to see the streets filled with activity once again.
But thousands of new cases of COVID-19 are being confirmed every day. This virus is here to stay. On the one hand we need to protect ourselves but on the other hand we need to build up immunities.
I have no faith in the statistics they provide us with, especially here in Mexico where testing is practically non-existent.
I’m beginning to question the idea that travel is more dangerous than staying at home and I look forward to the borders opening up again so I can go home to Leavenworth.
Quarantine has done its job of slowing the spread. But quarantine does not prevent COVID-19.
The fact of the matter is that life simply cannot go back to the state it was in prior to COVID-19. The economy has been crushed. The fragility of our mental health is evident in the catastrophic increase in suicide rates. And now the anger and frustration of being confined is showing up in the forms of protests and race riots.
Enough of man’s inhumanity to man. There is a new reality now and society needs to adapt. And the sooner the better.
It’s hot out there. The 90s have arrived. Days like this I miss the ocean in Mazatlan.
Thursday morning there is an outdoor market in my neighborhood.
Restaurants are closed. Take out and delivery only.
Bars are closed here although my friend told me they’re still open in Leavenworth, Washington. Go figure.
Schools are closed. I haven’t heard anything about the indoor malls yet.
A friend in Zacatecas told me this morning that she couldn’t find chicken or eggs. So far we have no shortages here in Ags.
Corner tiendas are open. Note in my pics that these are not completely enclosed. Lots of fresh air gets in and social distancing is easy as there are seldom more than 2 or 3 people in them at the same time.
My saving grace are my daily coloring sessions in the park. The flowers are beginning to bloom again.
I really miss all the time I used to spend walking in and out of shops and engaging in conversation. It was a great way to socialize as well as practice my Spanish. Now most of my socializing is over the internet or on the phone.
A silver lining to every cloud……more time for writing!
I spent 3 months in Aguascalientes last winter and never saw one raindrop. This morning I ventured out to my favorite gordita stand for breakfast and noted the gloomy skies. I made it home just before it poured.
I decided that it’s a good day for writing. But before I dive into my WIP, I thought a blog post might be in order. In Leavenworth I didn’t spend much time at home so the blog posts were few and far between. But here in Mexico I am determined to spend more time writing this winter.
These containers are found everywhere in the neighborhood. There is absolutely no excuse to litter. The trash is emptied daily.
May God forgive me for taking this photo. A funeral procession came by and I couldn’t resist at least one photo. The mariachi follow the casket. The mourners in turn follow the mariachi as they walk through the streets from the church to the cemetery.
In the area where I live, clothes dryers are rare. Many people wash their clothes by hand and hang them out to dry in the sun. They are quite creative and merely string a line across the sidewalk or put items out on a chair.
As for myself, I prefer the lavenderia. I drop my clothes off in the morning and pick them up later in the day, neatly folded in a bag. I just picked up two weeks worth of laundry and the cost was a mere 69 pesos. Well worth it.
Minutes away from where I’m staying is Expoplaza. I often walk to the park there and color.
In the evenings, especially on the weekends, the playground here is very popular. also on the weekends, bordering the park are various vendors selling everything from sunglasses to churros. There is a cinema in the expoplaza itself which I frequent. I like to watch movies in Spanish, without subtitles. I get braver as the years go by.
Tomorrow I am looking forward to the tienguis. There is also no rain in the forecast.
This winter my home base is in Las Flores, Aguascalientes. I discovered this neighborhood last winter and love its proximity to the historical center and several museums, all within walking distance.
The name of my street is Begonias. All the names of the streets are flowers. (Las Flores is Spanish for “flowers.”)
This is a photo of the hotel where I live. You won’t see a Hyatt sign here. It’s an old house that’s been renovated into a hotel. Each room has its own bathroom. Common areas include the kitchen and laundry area.
Raul is the owner and takes good care of his properties. He is currently renovating a house where I first stayed for a week when I arrived. Not only did he move me and my luggage from place to place, but also a fridge and a microwave. I guess you could say that my room has now been transformed into an executive suite. None of the other rooms here have these appliances.
The following photo is the bull ring at the end of my street. It sees a lot of action during the Feria in the spring, but otherwise sits empty.
On my morning walk I encountered this neighbor across the street from my hotel. Cute, isn’t he?
There is no shortage of tiendas (corner stores). These two are at the other end of my street.
Two blocks away is the church I attend. It occupies the main floor of an apartment building.
Today is Thursday which means the tianguis (flea market) occupies a street a block away from where I live.
There is also an abundance of food available in this area, but I will save that as well as some other places in my neighborhood for another blog post.