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We are traveling in Mexico again this winter of 2012
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Friday, January 14, 2011

Visit to La Noria

Friday p.m.

I was so hyped up on the new photo program I forgot to include any regular pictures from our afternoon walk yesterday.
The Driver was feeling much better so we went out to lunch in the Plaza Machado – hence yesterday’s pictures. Then we again walked around the area. I wanted to check out a book place we’d seen where they had a lot of English books. Turns out it is a lending library for the Norte Americanos in the area. You have to live here to utilize it. Oh well…..
The area around it has a lot of gringos living there. Here are a couple of the homes they have restored.
Now that is GREEN
Nice Roof Garden
And one that needs some TLC. The cost of the building isn’t that much – it’s the restoration that needs a private bank.
Help Me Please!
And also saw some graffiti in the area – some of it is interesting instead of destructive.
This guy is working on putting the electrical lines underground – see the tubes


Then last night we went out for ribs again. The grill is in the patio area of the restaurant. Smells so good as you drive by. Had enough left over for lunch today.

YUMMMMMM
 This morning we took a drive out to La Noria – a tiny town inland about 25 miles. Had a pleasant surprise this year – the road has been fixed. Only one or two pot holes the whole way, instead of sections with craters and little pavement.

And this was new – It is a ranch/farm to raise Fighting Cocks. It wasn’t here last year. It’s pretty big and noisy.

video

As you arrive in town you go through the ever present arch.


Then past one of the little plazas scattered around the town. I like the fountain in this one.

And one of my favorite houses – every year the cactus growing out of the roof gets bigger.
Has two friends this year.
The main reason for visiting here are the little leather “factories.” We have visited them several times and learn something new each time.

This year just as we arrived so did a small tour group. About 10 or 12 people and their guide. As I got out of the car and walked towards the leather shop a young boy came up to me and gave me a red tea rose. I had forgotten this custom – every year the young boys give all the women tourists some kind of small flower. The boys are always dressed in their school uniforms of dark blue slacks and white shirts. The ladies in the tourist group received their flowers then we all entered the shop. Of course first thing they were shown were the beautiful and expensive leather masks. Lots of ooh and ahhs about them. This one was quite different as the face is carved wood instead of formed leather.


Some of the masks were made by the man we met in Mazatlan a couple of weeks ago.
Then the group was walked through a couple of the small work rooms with their antiquated equipment – treadle sewing machines for one. Years accumulation of leather scraps all over the place.

The blue shirted guide led them out into the open air work shop. His first stop a table of sandals that had just been completed. As he got to the work station the worker who had been making the shoes turned around and left.

Watching the worker leave
The guide watched him go then explained to the tourists that he was going to lunch and that all the workers were at lunch and siesta for a couple of hours. So this time they didn’t get to watch them work. Which is too bad as it is fascinating to see. The guide explained that the worker was born in town and has worked for 47 years for this shop. And they are now training a young boy to work with leather too.
Close up of some of the shoes.

The guide explained that they mainly make shoes for campesinos - farm workers - as they have a metal binders holding the strips of leather down. This makes them wear longer but they can't be used in the home as they will damage the floors. They also make regular Huaraches for tourists and of course they sell cheaper in La Noria than in Mazatlan. So buy now.
The wooden forms used to shape the shoes.
Wooden forms for shoes
The guide explained that this particular factory also raised their own cattle to insure the quality of the leather. They sell the meat and process the leather. Interesting.
The out door shop – the tire hanging in the tree is cut up to make tire tread soles.

And back through the shop I happened to notice this tray – look like deer feet to me.??

Did not ask about them. This shop also makes saddles and purses.
To see more about La Noria check out last years blog  link
Leaving town we had to wait for this truck to worm his way past these cars. Again notice how high the sidewalks are from the street. 
Narrow Streets - glad we're in a small car
And we found out that the movies we bought the other day that wouldn't play in the DVD because they are the wrong region code will play on the laptops. So we'll be able to watch them, just not on the bigger screen TV.
Enough for tonight - tomorrow is another day for adventures.

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