Discover Magic in Mexico’s Plazas

Did you know you can discover magic in Mexico? It’s true! You don’t need a great imagination, special super powers, or five tequilas (unless you really want them). Magic is right around the corner, patiently waiting for you, with no obligation or fee. You don’t need to prepare anything, you don’t need to speak Spanish, all you need to do is step out of your daily routine and become immersed in one of the most magical places in Mexico…the plaza.

At the heart of every Mexican town is its plaza. And if you are wondering what to do in Mexico on a Saturday evening, take a slow stroll over to the one nearest you. Tantalize your senses with a cornucopia of sights, sounds, smells, and tastes of the beauty that is Mexico. Let your natural curiosity uncover the subtleties of a culture very different than your own.

Whether you settle on a comfy café chair or a worn park bench, what may you expect to enjoy on your evening out? Here was my experience on a recent evening at the plaza in Ajijic, Mexico:

Laughing children running around, chasing each other with cans of spray foam held tightly in their hands, strategically planning their next attack; little toddlers wobbling like drunken sailors as they explored this magical thing called walking; teenage couples slowly strolling, flirting, engaged in the age-old dance of romance; older ladies chatting, fanning themselves in the summer heat, sitting closely together on benches, gossiping and dissecting the day’s events; two teenage boys clasping the gnarly hands of their grandfather, him precariously balanced between them, out for an evening stroll.

Bells tolling as a wedding finished at the town’s church. Beautiful Mexican women, decked out in gorgeous dresses, carefully navigating the uneven cobblestone sidewalks in their stiletto high heels. Their escorts hot, sweaty, and handsome in their suits and ties…yet everyone smiling, feeling the joy that weddings—the hope of new beginnings—can inspire in all of us.

Gringo tourists taking in the sights and talking loudly; the barmaid languidly serving drinks as she puffs away on a borrowed cigarette; the hot sun slowly dropping into a misty heat haze; the competing smells from street-side vendors softly hawking their wares; the feeling of being in a time warp, watching Mexican friends strolling around the hedged bandstand in the middle of the Plaza, following in the footsteps of their Spanish cultural ancestors, enjoying this paseo (walk), a centuries-old meet and greet affair.

Compelling, charming, and fulfilling, my summer evening drew to a close. Like fireflies, magic glittered in my eyes as I began the walk home, grateful for the simple joys of my new life in Mexico.

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