Sunday, March 13, 2011
From Ancient Times to Today
I love tianguis - the traveling markets of Mexico. Not necessarily to go to buy anything, just the ritual. Of course, I DID buy a few things.
Imagine my delight while at the beach to look out the bungalow window to see the tarps being set up, the metal frames of the booths being put together and all the goods being laid out for sale. From mango bread to used clothing. New clothing also. It was all there. About six blocks of it!
The first week, I bought a round blue plastic bowl which was used as a mixing bowl since nothing like that existed in the kitchen at the bungalow - 5 pesos.
Next week it was a loaf of mango bread and a loaf of delicious banana bread. Oh and a silver ankle bracelet.
But the next week was the best - fuscia pink irridescent Princess shoes for Matilda for her birthday and navy Crocs for Sebastian that are made to look like little cars. Total for the two pair, 200 pesos, around $16US The most costly purchase I made.
It is strolling shopping - you stop and talk to the vendors - you don't feel obligated to buy anything and deep in your soul you know that this tradition has been going on for as long as Mexico has existed.
I read that malls in many places in the USA have declining sales, not as many customers. It seems people like places where they can walk up or drive up and go into that store. Maybe if they set up tables in the parking lots of these malls, their sales might increase. You know, get back to the people.
Of course, it IS a lot of work. The tianguis start setting up at 7:30AM, having driven heaven only knows how far. Then they sell all day and at about 8PM they tear it all down, load it all up and get ready to do the same thing the next day - in the next town.
What a tradition!