Thursday, November 29, 2007

Bringing New Cacti Home to Chacala

This is a piece of thread art created by a Huitchol Indian, who live in Nayarit and Jalisco.
They were being sold at the market today.

I left Chacala early this morning. I went to the street market in the neighboring town, La Penita, this morning. It's about 12 miles away, but it's a two-taxi/collectivo ride each way. I wanted to be home by 10:30am because I was expecting some company.

So I left home at 7:15am and caught the collectivo that takes the private school kids to Las Varas. And got out at the highway. And stood there for about two minutes, when another taxi that does the Las Varas-La Penita run, came by. It took 22 minutes to get from Chacala to La Penita, for 25mx/2.25us.
I was shopping mainly for plants and for a couple of new shirts and some shorts. I don't have a lot of clothes. So they get worn and washed a lot and only last a year or two. Found a couple of shirts I liked, tropical cotton shirts, and a pair of shorts. All recognizable brands from the US. But the price has risen because gringo season has started around here. Instead of being 40 pesos a piece, they were 50 pesos each (formerly 3.60us, now 4.50us). Still pretty good.

Then I moved on the plaza where there are vendors who come especially for the gringo season. About late November thru late March. I was looking for plants, maybe succulents. And my neighbors from last summer, Juan and Zule.

Found two of the three vendors right off. My favorite plant seller, a middle-aged woman, was nowhere in sight. She has her own little plant nursery and I really enjoy being around here. But the two guys who buy plants from wholesalers were there. They don't know the names, but they do know the prices. This time they were all 10-12 pesos. 90 cents to 1.10us each.
They had the strangest looking succulents I have seen.
Peculiar blossoms. Very odd.

Finally a nasty mouthed woman, said to her friend, in English, "Those idiots (the vendors) put fake blossoms on those cactus." In a very loud voice. So I put my glasses on, and sure enough, there were fake blossoms.After the lovely ladies left, the vendor told me the decorated plants were for Christmas and were very popular.Then we removed the "blossoms" from my plants so he would use them on some other plants.I found Zule and Juan hanging out with their musician and jewelry making friends. They lived downstairs from me for a couple of months this past summer. That was their "vacation". Meaning they sold pineapple "salads" from 10am to 7pm on the beach. From a rolling cart.When they are not on vacation, they sell pineapples at a beach closer to home. About 7 miles from Chacala. At the Playa de Naranjo. The beach area was just sold off to the highest bidder and all the restaurants and cuestos (shops in shacks) were bulldozed.So Zule and Juan are looking for another location. Right now they are back in Chacala on weekends.

I looked around for a few other things. Some coloring books and crayons for visiting kids. And some bright colored handtowels, and headed home. was home by 10:15am. Not a bad trip. I got 15 new little succulents,. some of them cacti for 15omx/$15us. No more spending money this month. Th spending spree is over for now.

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