It's that time of year again! Time to drag my husband kicking and screaming out of Playa del Carmen in a futile attempt to get him to wind down a bit and relax! If you have been following our annual family trips over the years, you will have noticed that they have kind of devolved into actual vacations rather than opportunities for me to try to jam as much culture and "meaningful life experiences" as I can down the gullets of my reluctant children and over-worked husband. While you will never catch us lounging at the beach at some AI resort, I have at least learned to relax a bit, not plan out every single moment of the trip and just let things kind of flow. I have learned that if I let everyone sleep in, I can still run out and explore in the morning. If my husband is allowed to catch up on his emails every morning instead of rushing him out the door, he is much more apt to go along with whatever I have "planned" for the afternoon and evening. I have also learned the pleasures of sitting in one of the cafes along "el jardin", sipping mezcal and watching the world go by me. So there's going to be a lot of that on this trip. Relaxing, sipping, eating, watching, reading, chatting.....

To get here from Playa, we flew out of Cancun and into Queretaro. A fixed-rate $350 mn cab ride brought us from the airport to the centro historico where we dined on the patio at the city's famous Restaurante 1810. This had been suggested to us by a friend (thank you Diego) and online reports backed up his recommendation. We were certainly not disappointed as the food was delicious and service exemplary.

From there, we hailed a VERY small cab and, with our luggage piled high on our laps, headed for the huge bus terminal. $660 mn and 2 1/2 hours later we arrived in Guanajuato City, grabbed TWO very small cabs and followed the directions to our rental house, Casa Parra. Dylan, the property manager was here to greet us, get us settled in and point us in the right direction for a nice dinner.

As our vacation rental is located just a few minutes walk from the Jardin de la Union, that's where we went, making a beeline for Casa Valadez an elegant upscale restaurant located on the square (actually, it's a triangle) and just across from the Teatro Juarez. The area was packed with people. Some, like us where there to dine. Others strolled through the park, listened to the many musicians playing or getting ready for the walking tours of the city that leave from the Teatro Juarez nightly, showing visitors the highlights of the the centro historico. We were all pretty exhausted after dinner, so we wandered back to the house, made the obligatory Oxxo stop on the way back for morning supplies, unpacked our bags and called it a night. As we had arrived long after nightfall, it's hard to get a feeling for the place. Tomorrow, we will explore a bit further and see what this vibrant city has to offer.