Tlaquepaque: Casa Fuerte

Places

Last week I had, along with many of my friends and classmates, an amazing week at a “nerd-cultural” competition called PIBA. Some went to dance, others went to sing, some said a poem. I participated in oratory. I had an hour and 30 minutes.  They gave me a topic, then I prepared it and exposed it to the public. It was awesome! All the poets won and my debate team got third place!

So during our time there, we went to a couple of nice restaurants. In Tlaquepaque (15 minutes from Guadalajara [Jalisco’s capital]), we went to a lovely restaurant.

We arrived, and went through the beautiful arch made out of flowers. We sat down and got the bread and butter. How pretty! The butter was wrapped up in a corn husk.

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Then, we had to order our drinks. I thought water, but then the waiter suggested me lemonade with peppermint. AMAZING! Fresh, sweet, tasty.

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Then came the main course. We had only one hour to eat to I chose an “unfailable”, chicken enmoladas, and yes, they were good, the plátano macho was nice as well.

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BUT, my friend ordered corn bread, which is normally dessert, but in this case it was amazing. It had the right amount of corn, it was slightly salty and fresh. If you want to try something new and definitely delicious, order the cornbread (it’s actually an entreé, but it does work as a main course).

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We had very little time there, but if you just want a coffee ora cold drink, I recommend to spend some time there, the restaurant is beautiful, authentic and has amazing service.

FINAL GRADE

pros: It has amazing service, the place is beautiful and some plates are good

cons: They have very few outstanding plates, most are very common 

price: $$

stars: 3.5

Remeber: never miss a chance to eat, and pack your fork werever you go.

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TECHO: a house building – life experience

Events

As you probably have noticed, I haven´t been very active lately; that because exams and some activities have kept me very occupied. Yet, this weekend was worth every second.
I participated with an organization called TECHO, with which we (80 students from my school) built 10 houses for the poorest families in our state. 

My cuadrilla (group) was made up of my friends and 2 older girls, and with the leaders of the group we were were 5 girls and 5 boys (I believe we were the best team).
We got there at 8 am on Saturday, we made the foundations for the house. It was raining and we needed to dig about 50 cm to put the wood “bricks” that are to hold the entire house. That was exhausting. 


We ate with the family. Karen, the women getting the house, made beans with sausage and rice. While we ate, Miguel Angel, the future house owner, talked to us about his “past life”, how, before finding God, he was a drunk, cheater and even, once, killed a man. I was speechless.

We also had a great time with the family´s kids; we played with plastic cars, and mud “rain”.

The day ended and we were really tired, but happy, very happy of the incredible experience. We slept in the government’s building, where we had dinner and breakfast.

The next day was the fun part. We hammered the floor, which was super fun.

Then we did the walls and roof of the house. This is the coolest thing I’ve done in years.

We ate, again, with the family, they made us some chilly dogs.Then the boys got 20 pesos, which is about one dollar and twenty five cents, which I think, after seeing their mother´s face while handing the bill to the kids, was a lot of money for them. After the kids came back, with no change, and a bag full of junk food, her face seemed as one from a ghost. Nevertheless, the kids, both 6 and 2 years old, offered us chips and cookies before even trying them themselves. That generosity was simply astonishing to me.

The moment we finished the house and inaugurated it, we felt happy, but the family, they were joyous, they look as if that one day was the best of their lives.

I´ll avoid the names, for terms of privacy, of course, but I also learnt A LOT from my team members.

1. Girls can be strong and powerful.

2. Boys do think puppies are cute, but some are afraid to show it.

3. You might me quiet, but have a playful heart.

4. Fun and smart do go together.

5. Sarcasm rules.

6. Sweet girls CAN build houses

7. There is nothing compared to team work

I learnt that family and friends are very, very important and how we should value something as simple as our floor or that our home as running water. JUST BE THANKFUL, BEACUESE TODAY SOME KIDS ARE HAPPY THEY GOT A NEW PAIR OF USED SHOES.