One of the things I do to keep myself "out of trouble" and busy is to bring a specialty tour to San Miguel once a year. Last year it was a culinary group of chefs, restauranteurs, cookbook authors, etc. The year before that it was Mexican folkart enthusiasts and collectors.
This year it is The Orange Show of Visionary Arts - www.orangeshow.org. The people that are coming are outsider art enthusiasts. There are many schools of thought as to what identifies "outsider art" but mine is that anyone who has a compulsion to create with no thought of resale or critiques but for the pure enjoyment or satisfaction of creation. These are unschooled people in the arts. I've been an avid follower and visitor to outsider environments for ten or fifteen years. There is a wonderful blog, www.detourarttravels.blogspot.com if you want to see some magnificent environments. Be sure to look at Casa Azucar (the House of Sugar) in El Paso. It is extraordinary. I think my friend Larry who I have traveled on the Eyeopener Tours with in the past is scouting for the next tour that I will ABSOLUTELY be on in 2009.
So, I've been busy working on the itinerary for this group and looking for quirky environments like the Mummy Museum in Guanajuato and Timmyland in Atotonilco. It really is fun to plan these tours and to see the surprise and elation on the faces of the participants when you have exceeded their expectations. It will be five days chockablock full of travels, surprises, great food and Mexican culture. I have artesans from throughout Mexico coming to participate in a special mercado for these folks among other things.
Next year is already booked with a "foodie" group who want to come and eat their way through the Colonial cities of Mexico. Won't I have fun putting that tour together? I already have some ideas............
This specialty tour thing is an extension of my desire to share the beauty of Mexico with the people of the world who might not have any idea of this rich culture.