January 12, 2019: I managed to get out the apartment early today. No, it wasn’t a matter of my willpower, it was that someone around here is doing some building, and I had enough of the noise quite early. My reward for getting out was making it to the Champurrado lady, not only while she still had some Champurrado, I was early enough for it to be piping hot. I made my way up to the little plaza I like, and sat there for an extra long time. The Champurrado was so hot that I had to wait for it to cool down.
After I finished the Champurrado, I walked around town, trying to keep to the less traveled streets. I probably didn’t need to to that, since it was so early most everyone one I saw seemed to be heading to work.
Once I had closed the rings on my Apple Watch, I headed home. I couldn’t resist stopping and buying some candied fruit. I bought a Lime without stuffing and one with. I also couldn’t resist buying a half an orange. When I got home I tasted the edge of the stuffing and found that it was coconut. So this time the coconut was in the lime.
January 13, 2019: Headed out rather late today. I got in my exercise before heading to the market to learn a lesson. Mexico has blue laws. I can’t remember how long ago I was anywhere you couldn’t buy wine and beer in the market on Sundays. As I was heading home rockets were being fired into the sky. Rockets are fired off here to celebrate most everything. What I have gathered from asking locals is that they are fired off for weddings, funerials, graduations, going away parties, coming home parties, and saint days. So pretty much every day. (Have you looked at the calender of saint days?) I never got around to asking anyone in Cuenca what the rockits were for, but there it was only once a week or so.
January 14th: Today I stayed home. I got my exercise in walking in small circles around the apartment. I guess that there is still no one living downstairs, since no one has complained about my footsteps going on for a couple of hours each day when I don’t go out. Today was a cooking day for me. I had bought a nice package of bacon for $3.25USD. I like to cook all my bacon at once and warm it up for breakfast each day until I run out.
The girl from upstairs left my a packet of hotcake mix when she headed off to Ecuador. I cooked up all the pancakes too. As I cooked them I placed them into the oven so that the rack would keep them from sweating before I could put them in the freezer. Used to, when I was making pancakes for a bunch of people I would put them in a warm oven so that I could serve them all at once. But this time I used a cold oven so that they would be cool enough to freeze. When I transferred them into the freezer I laid them flat on a shelf for an hour before putting them into a ziplock. There were so many I had to chill them one fourth at a time, until they were all in the bag.
When I first got here, and made my first trip to the Mega market, I was disappointed to only find California Wine. I always like to drink the cheap local boxed wine wherever I happen to be. It is a habit I picked up in Italy back in the last century. Since I have been here over a month, I finally broke down and bought the California wine. It was only today, that I realized that “California” is a brand name. The wine is a mix of Argentine, Chilean, and Mexican wines.
After I finished cooking, I had planned to work on my novel and blog some, but I am afraid that I spent the whole day reading, working jigsaw puzzles on my ipad, and watching videos.
January 15th: After hanging out in the apartment yesterday, not getting anything done at all, I was ready to head out. A few days ago when I went up to the Monumento al Pípila I realized that it was halfway to the Glorieta Monumento a Cervantes. When I tried to walk there before, Google maps got me lost way back in the back streets. When I got home from that try, I examined Google maps and saw that none of the routes it recommended seem to keep to actual streets.
After going to Pipila, I found that Google was able to handle walking directions from there to the apartment. Before heading out today. I checked and saw that the Google directions between the two monuments were very clear. So I headed out to Pipila again.
Now when you get right down to it, I really didn’t want to see the Glorieta monumento a Cervantes. There were lots of photos of it on the internet. It was located in the middle of a traffic circle without much in the way of landscaping. It was just that I had failed at the attempt I had made, before I learned that the statue looked like something erected in soviet Russia , I had a need to succeed in the quest. Anyway, there was a large grocery store near the monument, laCocina, where I hoped to get some orange marmalade.
As I was heading out, I ran into my neighbour, Rodrigo. He advised me to take a rain coat. The sky was rather dark, so I ran back in and changed my hoody for a raincoat. It ended up not raining even though the clouds still hovered over the city.
When I had taken the funicular up to the Monumento al Pípila, I had walked back down. I was sure that even if Google maps gave me a few bum steers I could find my way back up on foot. As I walked through town I saw that they were taking down the Christmas decorations.
After doing my shopping and taking the obligatory photos of the monument, I found that Google was consenting to give me directions to the Mega market in centro. The directions seemed reasonable, so I began to follow them. I got to a point where Google was giving me directions to go down a street, but there was no street where the map showed it. I started walking back and forth, watching how the GPS marker for me moved. I finally determined that my GPS position wasn’t matching up to the map. I think that this might be because I am using downloaded offline maps.
I was glad that Google got me lost for a while because I got to see the cat above and the house below.
Once I determined that so long as I kept my blip going in general parallel to the street on the map, I would do fine. Once I got on the street above, I fell in behind two police officers walking their beat. I figured they were going to centro, so I figured that following them was good. After a while they turned off to check the doors of a church and I continued to follow the general flow of foot traffic. I eventually found myself on a street I knew and was able to put the phone away and walk to the Mega Market. I didn’t buy anything at the laCocina, which I could buy at the Mega, because things were more expensive at laCocina, and it was too far away to carry much.
When I was at the Mega’s bakery I saw that they had just taken a couple of pizzas from the oven. I asked for a slice. It might not be apparent in the photo below, but it was a very large portion. The bag in the container was catsup. They serve catsup with the pizza here. It wasn’t like the catsup in the US, it was thinner with more of a vinegar taste. I really liked it. I liked it so much that I ate the toppings off my pizza so that I would have more crust to sop the catsup up with. The pizza was very good too, despite the dark color.
OH NO, I just realized that, though I passed a half a dozen Bug today, I forgot to take a photo!