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July 21, 2016
Susan P. Baker on using her law experience for the suspense novel UNAWARE
May 31, 2017

I’ve been out of touch lately. First, I went on a trip to New York City with my daughter who was turning forty and wanted to celebrate her birthday there. The following week, I spent Thanksgiving holidays in Galveston with family. The week after that, we took a weeklong cruise out of Galveston. We spent the month of December catching up and celebrating the holidays here in San Miguel de Allende, hence the previous post, and then on New Year’s Eve, my younger brother died. We immediately drove back to Galveston and returned here about 10 days later. I acknowledge that I am in mourning and will be for a long time. My brother was dear to me.I’m not feeling very creative these days so I hunted around for some old writings of mine to share on this blog until I can get my creative side reactivated. Below is a short piece I wrote ten years ago, in May 2016.

Loving San Miguel

“Why does everyone wait until the day before they leave San Miguel to decide to buy something?” the realtor asked.

For me, it was not love at first sight. The first stay in San Miguel was up on Atascadero. I had read Tony Cohan’s book, but didn’t realize that the caretakers wouldn’t even light the water heater for us. For three days, we thought we couldn’t get hot water.

Additionally, the house across the road from us was in the process of being demolished—blow by blow for most of the month we were there. The one to our left was being remodeled—blow by blow. The workers started around seven each morning and generally worked nonstop. A layer of white dust blew in our windows and covered the tabletops and sofas. I had trouble breathing on the days when it didn’t rain at all. I learned to take my nap when they took their siesta. I was convinced the apartment owner was involved in a conspiracy with the workers to make our lives miserable.

My husband had to fly to Boston during our month so two girlfriends came to visit for a few days. When they got ready to leave, I said, “Take me with you.” But of course, I was stuck. We had paid for a month in advance as well as having nonrefundable, unchangeable airline tickets.

We took the ETA to Chapala to visit a friend overnight. I got Montezuma’s Revenge and spent the day on the sofa while my husband and my friend went out and about.

After our return to San Miguel, we hired a guide to take us on a tour of Quertero and Pozos. But again I was ill and miserable.

Near the end of our stay, the workers miraculously quit working regularly. Ah, the peace and quiet. The serenity. The view from the hill improved dramatically.

For some strange reason, we started looking at real estate ads in the Attencion. We attended a free seminar that answered questions about San Miguel. We looked at several possibilities with one realtor, but when nothing presented itself, he said go to another, so we did. And on our last day there, we found two places we really liked. The first one was out of our price range. The second was a condominium in the process of being built. We immediately snapped it up.

Over the course of the next three months, after we were tempted to go to the hospital and have our heads examined, we completed the purchase of our little place. We spent the Christmas holidays furnishing our place, my husband hanging pictures, me making draperies.

What is it about San Miguel that is so alluring? It’s a mystery to me. When I’m at home here in Texas, I don’t think of it that often, but when I’m in San Miguel, I never want to leave. I can’t explain it, but I love it. We’ll be there again for a month this summer. I hope I still feel the same.*

*Note–this was written in May of 2006. We now live full-time in San Miguel.

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