(Our Chihuahua trip continued....)
Each city in Mexico has a very active city center...it is where the majority of shopping is
done. Often there is a Catholic church and a park...where people gather to
socialize. You will also find many types of "street food" in the city center.
What more do you need???....a little shopping...your friends...your church and some yummy
food. In a city center you will typically find "Mom and Pop" type stores...there are very
few "chain"stores if any at all. I like that about this country...people still own small stores and
they often sit in those stores all day long! They are there to make sure the store is successful.
In Chihuahua the city center is pretty organized for shopping. For instance, if you are looking
for a pair of boots, a saddle or anything leather...you would go to a particular street, where
each store sells just leather items. I think that is pretty efficient! At Christmas time "Santa" was
in search of the perfect saddle for The Rooster. When "Santa" asked around about the perfect store...
with the perfect saddle...he was directed to one particular street in downtown Chihuahua where
everything "saddle" would be represented. Off he went to the special street...and there he found
many styles of saddles as well as basically every price range anyone could need. It really made
"Santa's" job much easier;) So this concept would be the same for most any item you
could be shopping for. If you needed fabric...there is a street for that....if you need a backpack...
there is a street for that...if you need a wedding gown...there is a street for that....you get the idea.
This cute Indian lady (above) had set a small table up on the sidewalk and was selling
the items that she had embroidered...the workmanship was really nice.
She was also selling some little beans, that if placed in a little red bag...(she was selling
those too)....and placed into your pocket, would take away any headache that you may have!
You will find many items just like this...sold on the streets of Chihuahua....
items that promise to cure any ailment that you may have!:)
This was one of two parks in the "city center." This particular park is the shoe shine park.
Every side of this park is lined with a shoe shine stand...each individually owned and operated.
Each little shoe shine guy has his own group of customers...and if they are like me....they
are loyal customers...and will not allow anyone else to shine their shoes. In our town we
have our own special shoe shine man....who is a VERY interesting man...we have been going
to him for years. We often gather every pair of shoes and boots that need to be shined....
deliver them to Don Nati....and return late in the afternoon to pick them up....all cleaned and shined.
I don't even have to leave my car...when he sees me drive up...he comes to the car...
now...that is service!!;) This reminds me that I should really write about Don Nati...he is one
that will live on forever! He has been polishing The Missionary Boy's boots since he learned
to walk. The Farmer's Father was also a loyal customer of Don Nati.
It is very common to see a few Tarahumara Indians walking the streets of any Northern Mexico
town. They are often carrying small children or babies on their backs. I thought this young
girl was really beautiful. She had the sweetest smile...but when it came time to take her
picture...she wouldn't smile! She had on her back, a newborn baby...maybe a couple of weeks old.
She too was darling!
It is an adventure to walk the streets of Chihuahua...I was taking so many pictures that someone asked
me if I was journalist..."nope" I said..."just a person who loves the culture of this country..."
Not having been born and raised in Mexico....I can see the cultural differences that are so
present here...even after living here for 20+ years. Now if you were to ask The Darlings and The
Farmer...they would tell you that this is all "normal"...and ask why I was making such a big
deal out of regular things. I love that too!! That to them this is just another...very regular....
day in their lives!