On Sunday Morning my wife Gina and I had the following conversation about how we were going to spend the day:
¿Hoy qué vamaos a hacer?
What are we going to do today?
Vamos a Uriangato/Moreleón para comprar ropa.
Let's go to Uriangato/Moreleón to buy clothing.
Bueno. Ya vámonos.
Okay. Then let's get going.
Note that “vamos” literally means “We go” and “vámonos”, which is actually an idiomatic expression, means “Let's go” and has a sense of urgency to it as in “Let's go right now”.
The place that she wanted to go is actually two places. They are the towns of Uriangato and Moreleón which are twin cities located in the southernmost part of the State of Guanajuato about an hour's ride from Irapuato. We usually just go to Uriangato and we have an established routine that we like to follow. Uriangato is one of the leading manufacturing cities in the textile industry in Mexico. For that reason it is a good place to buy clothing at a discount. There are several kilometers of outlet stores that handle all types of clothing and it there is a “tianguis” (tee-AHNG-eez) or outdoor market flavor to it. We can buy currently fashionable clothing for Gina at about half the normal retail price. Unfortunately there isn't much in the way of clothing that is suitable for me. For that we generally have to visit Omar the tentmaker in Guadalajara. We like to arrive in Uriangato fairly early because it takes quite a bit of time to cover all of the territory on foot and so we like to arrive about ten o'clock before it gets crowded and before the day gets too warm. There was no danger of that this time, however, because the day was cool and overcast from the remnants of all the hurricanes and tropical storms even though we are well inland. After we arrived and parked our car in a convenient lot we started walking down the street and Gina quickly spotted something that interested her. She was looking for pants that are called “pescadores” or “fishermen” in Mexico but in the United States they are called “pedal pushers”. She wanted them to be of a stretch material which they call “licra” (LEE-kruh) here. Apparently people just adopted the sound of the DuPont trademark name for spandex and use it for any type of stretch material. We went to investigate what she saw and I recorded the following conversation which is quite typical:
Mira los pantalones tipo pescador ahí en esa tienda.
Look at those pedal pushers in that tienda over there.
Si, vamos a ver.
Yes, let's go have a look.
Buenas tardes, señora.
Good afternoon, ma'am.
Buenas tardes. ¿Me muestras un pantalón de pescador, talla mediana, color rosa, por favor?
Good afternoon. Can you please show me some rose color pedal pusher stretch pants in medium size?
Es unitalla y aquí esta.
The size is “one-size-fits-all” and here it is.
Solo ochenta pesos.
Only eighty pesos.
Bueno. ¿Qué otras colores tiene?
Okay. What other colors do you have?
Hay azul marino, verde olivo, negro, café y gris.
There is aqua marine, green olive, black, tan, and grey.
Deme un negro y un gris también.
Give me a black and a grey also.
Aquí tiene. ¿Quiere qué le muestre algo más?
Here you are. Would you like me to show you something else?
Sí, una blusa de color azul cielo, como la de aparador, talla treinta y dos.
Yes, a sky blue colored blouse like the one in the display, size thirty-two
Aquí tiene. También tengo colores fuscia, beige, y marrón. Son muy bonitas y de muy buena calidad.
Here you are. I also have it in fuschia, beige, and brown. They are very pretty and they are very good quality.
¡Ay qué bonitas! ¿Cuánto cuesta?
My how pretty! How much?
Ciento veinticinco cada una.
One hundred twenty-five each.
Bueno. Deme la azul y también la marrón.
Okay. Give me a blue one and also a brown one.
No, por el momento es todo. Gracias. ¿Cuánto le debo?
No, that will do for now. Thank you. How much do I owe you?
Son doscientos cuarenta de los pantalones y doscientos cincuenta de las blusas. Entonces son quinientos noventa pesos.
That will be two hundred forty for the pants and two hundred fifty for the blouses. That comes to a total of four hundred and ninety pesos.
Aquí esta seiscientos.
Here is six hundred.
Su cambio es diez pesos. Espere un momento y los pongo en una bolsa de plástico.
Your change is ten pesos. Just a momnet and I will put them in a plastic bag.
Aquí tiene señora. Gracias por su compra. Hasta la vista.
Here you are ma'am. Thanks for your purchase. We'll be seeing you.
Thank you. Goodbye
Note: If you go:
If you haven't been to Uriangato you definitely ought to go. It is only about an hour's drive from Irapuato and if you get on the new autopista to Morelia and Ixtapa is is a very safe and pleasant drive with lot's of beautiful scenery. Be sure to get off at the “Morelia Libre” exit and then just follow the signs to Uriangato. As you enter the town you will be on a street with a divider. You will see vendors along this street but I suggest that you keep going until the divider ends and the street narrows down between buildings on either side. Continue on for about a block and you will come to two very good parking lots. The one on the left at #89 Obregon (which I prefer) is called is called “Estacionamiento Obregon) and the entrance is beside the Hotel Diamante and Restaurant Colibri. They charge twenty pesos for all day and the lot is secure and has clean bathrooms. There is another good lot on the right called “Estacionamiento La Cuadrilla” which also has plenty of room and clean restrooms. We usually follow Calle Obregon until it splits and then we bear to the right for a couple more blocks and turn left on Calle San Miguel and go one block to the town square. There we plop down at the Café Costeño for a nice capucchino and recharge our batteries. Sometimes I just like to sit in the square for awhile and just watch the little kids chase pigeons and take in the sights and sounds. Then we grab a twenty-five peso cab ride back to our starting point and retrieve our car for the trip home. The whole ordeal can take four or five hours (if you go with a woman) so be sure and wear comfortable shoes. Oh yes, and if you sport one of those St. Francis bald spots you better wear a hat. Oh, yes, I almost forgot...if you do go with a woman you better take plenty of pesos and some big woven plastic shopping bags to carry all the stuff.
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