Culiacan….for a while

The only downside to being here with family is a complete lack of wi-fi.  We hadn’t been able to post any updates for a bit.

I called Alan the second day we were in town and he said he’d like to come by to see us the next day.  After much discussion between Alan and Lorena giving directions Alan showed up.  Apparently Lorena’s direction had a lot of “come to me”….hmmm for some reason this didn’t help Alan out too much!

Anyway, he showed up and took us to a local house where his houseguest had prepared lunch.  It was pork chops and other wonderful food.  It was a darn good meal.  Alan has a couple of different businesses, one of which is construction related.  Pedro (being a carpenter) asked if we could go to his shop, so off we went.

It turns out Alan manufactures furniture (think entertainment units, closet inserts, benches) out of a pre-cast material that’s kind of like a combination of concrete/plaster.  It’s very durable (termites don’t like it) and cheap.  Alan also has a business of selling Nopales (cactus) to various ladies around town.  He asked me if I’d like to see the family farm and what it’s all about.  The farm boy in me agreed.

He met me at the house the next morning about 7:30 and after running a few errands around the city we headed out towards Pericos.  Alan’s family has been in this territory for a loooong time.  His family ranch is over 150,000 acres and is one of the largest privately owned ranches in the state of Sinaloa.  We hadn’t gotten quite to Pericos when we turned off on a dirt road.  About a mile or so off the highway we came to the family farmhouse and the field of nopales.

Pedro, Alan, me and chef Jose.

Most of the plants are about 5-6′ high.
Interior of the family house….about 80 years old.
Loading up a truckload of Nopale pads to sell.

Once the truck was loaded up it was back to Culiacan.  I rode all over town with Alan and Inez selling to a wide variety of vendors.  I would have loved to have taken some photos, but felt like it may have been somehow a bad idea.  Since this is Alan’s livelihood I didn’t want to jeopardize it.  We were in some pretty rough and run-down areas, but darned interesting to see.  We finished around 6pm.  The family wasn’t too thrilled I had been gone so long.  I think they thought the worst and I can appreciate where they were coming from.  Culiacan is a rough town.

Having said that, I’d decided I wanted to stay and start my Spanish lessons.  It would give me a chance to speak and understand more as well as give me some time with family.  Not to mention a place to stay.

Pedro and Dom decided to head out Sat morning towards Mazatlan.

Loaded up and ready to hit the road.

Now I just had to find a teacher!

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