Room for More
My husband, Peter, and I were traveling in Mexico when we suddenly found ourselves without a place to stay.
Over the years, all our accommodations while traveling have been quirky in one way or another, but they have all been pretty much what we were expecting, and we’ve never had any insurmountable problems.
This week, we encountered insurmountable problems.
When we arrived at the airport, the caretaker stood us up. That was not a good sign. We found other transportation and, when we finally found the caretaker, we were glad he had not come, as he was in no condition to drive and the car he would have driven didn’t look much better.
Things got worse from there.
We were going to have guests join us, and the guesthouse was supposed to have two bathrooms. There was just one and it was filthy, along with the rest of the house. There were junked vehicles piled around the property, windows were broken, and everything was covered with a thick coat of dust.
“We can’t stay here a month!” I said to Peter.
“We can’t stay here at all!” Peter answered. I was relieved we were obviously on the same page.
“I want to go back to San Miguel!” Peter said before I had a chance to.
We had just left San Miguel de Allende, which we loved. But finding a place to stay—anywhere—was not going to be easy with universities on break and people finally taking vacations. Then I remembered how helpful the residents of San Miguel had been. I asked for help on their Facebook page.
Literally within minutes, a man named Jorge said he had a one-bedroom apartment in a hotel with a fully equipped kitchen. “I am the owner,” he said. He gave the address. It couldn’t have been in a better location.
“This is going to be expensive,” I thought. “How much for an extended stay?” I asked.
“30 dollars per day,” he answered. “Housekeeping included.”
“Well, that’s not gonna be any good!” I said to Peter.
“It will give us a place to land and we can look for something better,” Peter said.
We hustled out of town, sending a note to the absentee landlord in Europe, telling her we would be pursuing a refund. “And we’ll get it!” Peter told me, in a tone that he reserves for the rare instances when he gets seriously angry.
Late that evening we showed up at “Casa de Los Soles,” which means “House of the Suns,” and Jorge was sitting at the front desk.
“You must be Carrie!” he said, and I got a very good feeling.
He showed us the immaculately clean apartment. There was a bedroom with a balcony, and a rooftop terrace, and a place for me to write, and a fully equipped kitchen, and sunshine pouring into every room.
Best of all, there were suns everywhere. Smiling ceramic depictions of the sun in every color and style imaginable covered the three-story-high walls of the courtyard and the lobby and the stairs leading to our apartment. Every brick and stucco wall was covered in smiling sunny faces.
“How many are there?” I asked Jorge after he had shown us the apartment and after I had almost burst into tears at how comfortable and clean and charming it was.
“2,504,” Jorge answered.
“Really!” I said, in amazement.
“But next week, I will get more,” he added.
I couldn’t imagine how there could be room for one more smiling face. But I knew Jorge would somehow manage to find room for more.
Till next time,
– Carrie Classon’s memoir is called “Blue Yarn.” Learn more at CarrieClasson.com.