Week 41 & 42: San Luis Potosi. Mexico

I volunteered in hostel Sukhe for the past 2 weeks so it was a quiet one. There is not a whole lot going on in San Luis except for a ridiculous amount of churches. It’s v v holy but the perfect place to do absolutely nothing and that’s exactly what I did. A significant time was spent watching netflix. Luis Miguel is a hero in Mexico; a famous singer. The netflix series is a must watch I’m addicted. Highly recommended!

Historical centre of San Luis Potosi
Lovely evening light in San Luis
Love the colours of this church

Naturally enough my first night on the job was a bit of a disaster. It was a Saturday so everyone went out so I was left in charge of the hostel (the owner fecked off to Texas without telling anyone).  At 1am a lad started banging down the door saying he had a reservation. A girl in the hostel was convinced the guy outside was trying to rob the place. Apparently the same guy had tried to rob the hostel a number of times in the last couple of days. Naturally enough I was freaked out and had no idea what to do but I let him in any way not knowing what else to do. He seemed a little dodgy but harmless enough. He told me 3 of his mates were en route and they would be arriving at 3 am. Absolutely fantastic so I went to bed with the doorbell and safe. I got the fright of my life when the other 3 lads rocked up (very punctually at 3am) with a broken down car being rolled down the street. I was convinced it was stolen. I quizzed them a bit to try to ascertain were they dodgy or not.  I didn’t sleep a wink afraid of god the place was going to be fleeced. Luckily nothing happened  and I actually felt quite bad considering the icy reception I gave the lads. They were all off to a wedding the next day. Anyway after a few cold beers we were all friends again.

Jose, me, Roberto and Paula, hostel sukhe

That same morning I went to clean the terrace were I found 4 drunk men offering me beer. They definitely weren’t staying in the hostel and still have no idea where they came from so extremely dodgy. All in all a rough introduction to hostel work. Thankfully things chilled out after that.

Yet another church
Leonora Carrington museum
Leonora Carrington museum

One of the guys I was working with sadly explained to me that his cousin had cancer and desperately needed blood. In Mexico the system is really bad  in order to get blood you need to recruit your own donors and if not you  pay. So alarms set for 5am myself and Jose went to the hospital to donate. It was an experience in itself seeing the operation of a Mexican hospital. There were ques out the doors and we had to wait a mere 4 hours to donate. Poor Jose wasn’t eligible because he got a tatoo 2 years ago. It was worse than the Spanish inquisition  as I was being question by the iciest doctor. They made us feel like criminals and were actually really mean. They were very concerned about the fact that I was a dietitian and almost wouldn’t let me donate because of it. The Doctor told me in Mexico if you work in a hospital you can never give blood because of all of the infections. Another interesting difference is you’re not allowed eat before hand. This was hell because of the waiting time and the waiting room is located right beside the restaurant ideal.  Apparently it’s because there would be too much fat in your blood? Afterwards myself and Jose had the most delicious gorditas for breakfast and came back to the rooftop terrace in the hostel for a few well deserved whiskey and cokes. I was delighted to have been able to donate and wish Jose (the patient’s name too) the best and hope he recovers soon.

Whiskey and cokes on Sukhe’s roof terrace

Definitely one of my favourite activities is people watching and just wandering aimlessly around the chaotic markets of Mexico. I love talking to all the vendors and most of them are delighted to lap away especially Mexicans they are the best.  Mexico’s markets are probably the most random I have ever encountered with plenty Jesus’s, skulls and dolls sprawled around the place.

Your average feature in any Mexican Market
Would you like a heart?
Cow’s Stomach the main ingredient for Mexico’s famous Menudo soup (minging)
These type of tortillas are traditional to San Luis
This fella has been selling chillies and spices his whole life in San Luis’s Mercado
There are over 150 different types of Chillis in Mexico
One of the cutest Mexican ladies selling tortilla makers
Mexico’s famous Tortilla makers
If you don’t want to make your own Tortillas you can always buy them from some of the excellent Tortillarias
Another typical feature in any Mexican market
Hard to understand how there is a market for these….

I met some amazing people during my time in San Luis. So with batteries fully recharged Ró is back on the road and heading to Northern Mexico. Wish me luck!!

Me  after 10 months of backpacking!

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