I made it!!! After ten hours of sleepful travel, I arrived in Guadalajara, Mexico to a torrential downpour of rain. Just my luck. Rainforest raised girl seeks sun to find nothing but more rain. Alisa & Jared are hosting me here for a week in their wonderful home located in a little Ajijic, Mexico, right next to the fifty mile wide lake of Chapala. It's huge and gorgeous and I really hope to see more of it this week. Alisa and Jared have three wonderful children, who are the cutest ever, two red heads and a blonde. Ella age 7, Maiya age 4, and Ethan age 18 months. This morning we started bright and early (early by my standards, which is like 8 am), and headed to the big city for "Market Day"! It wasn't raining, just overcast, but cold enough that I had two coats on. Wait, what? Two coats? Am I really in Mexico? The one time they have a cold snap in a billion years just has to be the same time I come to visit. It's supposed to warm up by this weekend, fingers crossed!
The market was huge. Streets lined with foods, trinkets, art, music and more. It just never ended. We were able to stop by a local business called Calidad En Repujado, that Alisa and Jared used to buy from, and then turn around to sell in their store in Alaska. The artists name is Ricardo Portillo and he so talented.
|Family run business, that sells metal art. Amazing stuff!|
|The finished product.|
It is crazy to see such talented artists selling their items for so incredibly cheap. Tourist in Alaska would pay at least double, if not 3 or 4 x's what they sell it for here. From $5 hand painted boxes that would sell for $30 in the states to $50 hand beaded art by the Huichol People, that no American would take less than $200 for. Around every corner, there was either a vendor selling their craft, or a garage like studio where it was being created. How many hand made things do you see on the shelf back home? I was surrounded by talent, local talent, musicians, cooks, artists, craftsman, looking for attention, an ear, a stomach to satisfy, a home. The people were so kind, and not pushy or annoying like most touristy coastal towns in Mexico. I thoroughly enjoyed myself.
Oh! I also got to go to my very first trade show outside of the USA. What an unexpected surprise. Alisa and Jared are sales reps and like to go to shows here in Mexico to find new lines to represent. There aren't a lot of Alaskan type gifts, but definitely fun to look! Again, so much talent. That is something the USA doesn't have much of anymore, hand made items. However, this year at the Seattle gift show, they dedicated an entire section to hand made. Hopefully it's making a big come back.
Here's a few photos of are day.
|Alisa enjoying lunch.|
|Pacole chicken soup with white corn. So good!|
|My, what lovely teeth you have.|
|Ethan took a nap while we were out.|
|Cute hand made box, and proof I took the picture.|
|Apparently mustaches are just as popular here in Mexico as they|
are in the USA.
|Same old open air markets, all over the world, except in the USA.|
|Can you guess what this is?!? (Answer at bottom of the blog)|
|I heart candy.|
|Hand made rolling pins and more!|
|My trade show badge.|
Answers 1: Fried fish - can you see their eye balls?
Answer 2: Poop, just kidding, it's ice cream, just kidding, you were right the first time, just kidding, Mexicans sell poop, just kidding, it's really chocolate, just kidding, but everyone loves chocolate, but i don't, just kidding, its really chocolate pudding, just kidding, it's piles of mud for mud fights, just kidding, it actually really is poop, just kidding, duh! it's ice cream, just kidding, just kidding. the answer is chili paste, not kidding.