Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende

Behind closed doors: Oh, what a relief it is!

It is popular and entirely appropriate in San Miguel de Allende to say “You never know what’s behind a closed door.”

Entrances on San Miguel streets give you no hint at all as to what lies behind them.

The most humble of doors can open onto a garden of Eden, a fairyland, a small village, a rabbit warren of homes, a vast and empty park, a stately hacienda, ancient ruins, a private town square surrounded by stately homes, ageless and towering trees, private roads – well, whatever imagination and money can conjure.

Continue reading
Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized

Once seen …

The four good sisters were walking in tight black-and-white formation up Calle Ancha de San Antonio on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, around 9 a.m.

That’s it. Nothing more to it. They just made me feel like smiling. Who wouldn’t smile at seeing a happy scrum of nuns?

I thought they were headed into a scrum with the tourist cluster headed down the sidewalk, but they stayed their formation and the visiting team blinked.

I’m sure pleasantries were exchanged by all. That’s just the way it is in Magical San Miguel.

Seen on Calle Cuna de Allende

Flower power along the busy Calle Cuna de Allende, next to the Parroquia de San Miguel de Arcangel in Centro.

In the doorway of El Alcazar restaurant and hotel, a couple painstakingly added real roses to the living floral doorframe.

Who wouldn’t want to walk through such a door on their way to dinner? Be it ever so fleeting an experience.

The gorgeous frame was created on Friday and gone by Monday.

Several doors down, this floral frame at Uri Zatarin Art Gallery was built to last, out of silk flowers. It was still there on Monday evening, as beautiful as ever.

Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Writings

The Queen of the Night makes a stunning appearance, her reign so tragically short

The Night-Blooming Cereus is putting on quite a show in our Colonia San Antonio courtyard tonight.

One night only, folks. By morning these beauties will be withered old crones, bereft of the intoxicating scent currently filling our home.

Rose spotted the — what shall we call it? — the chrysalis of the Cereus earlier this afternoon. Raul our gardener was just as excited to see them — there are two. We missed the blooming of several of the cactus flowers earlier.

Continue reading
Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

Flowers. Just flowers — but from San Miguel de Allende, Cape Cod, and Newport

In San Miguel de Allende, we call this the rainy season.

Many days, the clouds will roll in during the afternoon and by 5 p.m. or so, there will be rain, thunder, and lightning.

It is happening right now as I write about it. A little early in the day, 1:30 p.m. but nobody ever complains about the rain.

Continue reading
Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

Clouds. Just clouds.

Sometimes, you just have to go with the material that is right in front of you.

Today, it is nothing more than clouds.

Just clouds.

“You should see the clouds,” Rose calls out to me. I am in my favorite chair, in a cool dark room, battling ignorance and mean people on Twitter. “They’re really beautiful.”

She is right. Rose knows her clouds.

Big beautiful fluffy, floating, languid, lazily hithering and dithering clouds.

Not “looks like rain” clouds. Not trouble-ahead clouds. Not massive gray-dark sheets of roiling angry wetness.

Just legions of marshmallow clouds floating over San Miguel de Allende on a summer’s afternoon.

The kind of clouds in which you can see famous faces, clowns, ghouls, horses, funny dogs, dragons, elephants, and cars.

The kind of clouds for which soft fields of grass were created, so you could lie on your back and see famous faces, clowns, ghouls, horses, funny dogs, dragons, elephants, and cars.

The kind of clouds that inspired Joni Mitchell to write “Both Sides Now.”

The kind of clouds that John Constable painted in sprawling vistas like “The Hay Wain” and “Wivenhoe Park.”

Where would poets be without clouds? Looking at you, Percy Bysshe Shelley.

Maybe they are the same clouds, just recycled two centuries later?

Still hanging around, but posing now for iPhones.

Or, the kind of clouds under which young people fall in love and old people fall into reminiscing.

The kind of clouds for which the word “chiaroscuro” was invented.

Nobody can say that, back in the day, they had better clouds than these.

I’ve seen the evidence.

The best clouds ever — and always — are the ones that capture your imagination for a moment, just before morphing into whispy cotton candy swirls.

Timing is everything with clouds.

Pull your head up out of your cell phone, your busy works, your depression, your self-obsession, your shoe gazing — and look up.

Don’t let a day go by without observing the clouds, no matter how many or how few.

Don’t compare them to clouds past. That is not why they are here.

This is no cloud fashion show.

Clouds appear because they are trying to tell us something.

Seek out their shapeshifting secrets.

Learn their names, understand their reasons.

Follow the shadows they cast upon the ground.

You won’t find a pot of gold.

Maybe something better.

Love?

_______________________________________________________________________

Put more magic in your life!

If you enjoyed this post, consider subscribing and passing on the link to friends. It is all free. To subscribe, click on the three-bar thing at the top of this page (in the red circle). Feel free to share this post!

Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

In the Garden


And I turned to you and I said No guru, no method, no teacher

Just you and I and nature And the father in the garden

–VAN MORRISON, “IN THE GARDEN”


So I sit here in the garden, in the early summer light

A cup of coffee grows cold beside me

In the stillness that morning brings, fleeting stillness

The workers next door have not yet stirred to break the silence

With their hammers and saws and boisterous shouts.

There is still room for the birds in the dense green

To sing their songs, perform their magic,

Find love among the branches.

I don’t know the geography of this garden by name,

Only by the heart, defined by what my eyes take in:

The delicate flowers, the flirty birds, the twisty vines,

The shaded coolness of the branches. So many voices

of green, vying for my attention. I know

Only that it is too beautiful for me to rise and exert my will

Where it is unwanted, unasked for, upon another day.

An empty bag awaits upstairs with a ticket to somewhere far

And I only know I don’t want to leave the garden.

I want to sit here in the peace, in the coolness,

Listening to the plants breathing ever so lightly

Parsing out their secrets ever so lightly

Unlocking a state of grace ever so lightly,

Grace I can not achieve no matter how hard I try.

Outside, mothers and fathers walk their children

Hand in hand to school as church bells chime,

A touch of grace all its own.

I see their shadows pass on frosted windows,

And I sit and listen to the plants.

And listen to the birds.

And listen to the silence.

And my coffee grows cold for I dare not move

I can not move,

I don’t want to move.

I want only to become one

With the stillness.

In the garden.

While there is still time.

Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized, Writings

Waddup? Nuttin, you? Nada. So, howzabout a cat and cacti picture then? Cool. And some dancing girls.

“The Cat in the Cacti” was one of my favorite Dr.Seuss books to read to my sons when they were toddlers. They did not grow up confused, but I did. Still am, I guess.

You want to hear about how my IT wizard supercharged my streaming media speed so that I can actually watch a movie uninterrupted (sometimes) off my FireStick?

Nah. Me neither.

How about the coming Sriracha shortage because drought conditions in northern Mexico are killing off the chiles harvest and the hot-sauce factory has closed?

You already know that one, huh?

Continue reading
Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized

Update: Best fireworks ever (in pictures and videos) plus the ‘mystery’ lights dancing in the sky

Of course, there were fireworks to finish off the celebration of Saint Anthony in Colonia San Antonio.

And they were beauts.

Worth climbing up to the upper deck to watch. So worth it. Enough said.

Just a great way to finish off a crazy Sunday.

Happy Father’s Day to all of you Dads. Hope there were crazy moments and fireworks and lots of love in your life today.

What was this?

Just before the San Antonio fireworks, this cluster of lights floated up into the sky and hovered for about six minutes. In sync with the music, they rotated, changed position, changed color, and spun slowly around. And then floated ever-so-slowly to earth.

It was an unusual aerial ballet.

Computer-synced drones? Alien space ships? Northern Lights? Too much wine? What do you think?

Video of the San Antonio fireworks:

Click on any photo to enlarge:

_______________________________________________________________________

Put more magic in your life!

If you enjoyed this post, consider subscribing and passing on the link to friends. It is all free. To subscribe, click on the three-bar thing at the top of this page (in the red circle). Feel free to share this post!

Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende, Uncategorized

Crazies galore: Watching half the Locos parade … until the very end

That’s true. I only saw half the Crazies parade this morning in San Miguel de Allende.

The upper half.

Even at 6-foot-2 I wasn’t tall enough, or close enough to watch the Dia de Los Locos parade with such an unobstructed view. Man, there were a lot of people out there, and they got to the curb long before I did. What’s fair is fair.

Therefore, you may notice that many of my photographs are filtered through a variety of hairstyles, various hats, the occasional waving hands and fingers, hands holding iPhones in front of my iPhone, and the odd umbrella.

Continue reading
Standard
Colonia San Antonio, photography, San Miguel de Allende

Update, Saturday night fever: The drums beat, the tribes dance, the final procession to Parroquia de San Antonio is a stunner

I thought the day began at 5:30 a.m. with a massively loud fusillade of fireworks from the Parroquia de San Antonio grounds, about a block away from my home in Colonia San Antonio. That’s what sent me upright in my bed and nearly over the side.

The explosions kept up every 10 minutes or so for the next couple of hours.

My friend Bob Cooksey, who lives directly across the street from the church, says the celebration began an hour earlier with a 30-piece marching band heading out from the church grounds and down the street in front of his home.

Continue reading
Standard