We left San Miguel de Allende for León around two in the afternoon to pick up my Mom from the Guanajuato International Airport. She was traveling from San Diego to be with us at our home in San Miguel for 9 days! Needless to say, her redheaded grandbabies were bouncing off the walls with excitement!
Driving through the high desert plains of central Mexico has got to be one of my favorite sensory experiences as I am both entertained and mesmerized by the magnificent beauty of its awe-inspiring topography.
With a population of close to two million, León is known for its thriving leather industry, first class hotels and a public transport system that earned the city honorable mention in the Sustainable Transport Award 2011.
While Guanajuato City is the actual capital, León is considered the “capital” of Guanajuato for its social, commercial and government services and for being one of the most environmentally friendly cities in Mexico.
After checking into our room at the Marriott, the kids and I were happy to kick back (hello room service and cable TV!) while Frank went out to get some street tacos–16 for 115 pesos–around 9 US dollars!
My hubby was feeling more energetic than the rest of us after dinner and went to go check out the Poliforum Convention Center next door where there was an Expo under way.
Wearing his San Pancho Capoeira shirt, Frank was called over by a group of Capoeiristas for some conversation that quickly turned into instrument playing, singing, and a rather large gathering of curious onlookers.
Capoeira has given Frank a new lease on life as a retired firefighter, a deepened perspective of community and spiritual connectedness. His Capoeira group in San Pancho became like an extended family to him and he is working hard at putting one together in San Miguel.
Time to Pick up Grammy!
By 9 p.m. it was time for us to head to the Guanajuato International Airport. While waiting for my Mom’s plane to arrive, we wandered around the airport and came upon this display case of items that are forbidden in carry-on luggage. In case you were thinking of bringing a tortilla press or a metate into the cabin of the plane on your next Mexico departing flight, be forewarned, they are not allowed!
“Comida de Vaca”, Food of The Cow!
My Mom’s flight landed and we excitedly waited for her to walk through the passenger zone. One after another, nope, not Grammy. Did she get the red light at customs? Was she being questioned about all of the goodies she brought for her family? Yes, and yes.
When the customs agent questioned her as to why she had so many bags of dairy-free cheese, she nervously replied that they were for her grandson who was allergic to “comida de vaca”–food of the cow!
My son Liam has a severe dairy allergy, commonly explained in Mexico as “alérgico a los lácteos”, but my sweet Mama, in her worry that they would confiscate the cheeses that had made their way all the way from San Diego to Texas to Mexico, replied that her grandson was allergic to “food of the cow”. The customs agent allowed her to proceed onward without any cheese confiscations–phew–and like a few laughs!
Close to midnight and at long last, there was a Grammy sighting by The Reds and off they went running for some long-awaited hugs!
We made our way back to the Marriott, got my Mom checked into her adjacent room, and although it was close to one in the morning, there was too much excitement and no plans of going straight to bed, especially when Grammy comes with goodies like these!
We ultimately all got a much needed good night’s sleep, awoke in good spirits, enjoyed a delicious Mother’s Day breakfast at the hotel lobby, bid farewell to León and made our way back to San Miguel de Allende.
It is so great to have my Mom here, and as Liam told me this morning, “Mom, the house feels happy”.
We love our life in Mexico, but we dearly miss our loved ones in the States. Having my Mom and other family and friends visit us in the year and a half that we have been here is priceless. I am grateful that we will have this time with my Mom in San Miguel, to show her our new lives in Central Mexico.
Have you ever done this drive from San Miguel de Allende to León? Did you make the time to check out the leather district?
We would love to hear about your experience in the comments section below!
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