Thursday, January 23, 2020

Malpica, MX The baker, tile maker and the Laundry Ladies

Yesterday we grabbed our captured tourists again and headed for the hills. (Sorry its so long but have lots to share.]
On the toll road around Mazatlan. 47 pesos for a car, well worth it. 
We got off the toll road and took the old Durango Highway 40 and headed east.  Some of the pink trees are still blooming in this area. 
Our first stop, because three of our group had never been here, was Malpica. This house has a side business of arcade games on the front porch. 
Around the corner to the Panaderia - bakery. Notice the paper triangles hanging over the street. They are called Papel Picado- picked paper. They are considered a Mexican folk art. The designs are cut fro colored tissue paper using very sharp scissors. These colorful papers are made to celebrate religious festivals and national holidays.
Rolls just coming out of the wood fired oven. You can see some of the ash off to the right side of the oven. 
One large pan on the shovel. The gentleman is the baker's husband. A couple of years ago he had to have both knees replaced. He is doing great now. 
Moving some pans around so new ones can go into oven. 
After getting our baked goods we crossed the street to the tile maker George - Jorge. We sere devastated to learn that since we saw him in the spring he has had a heart attack. He and Bill had a discussion about life changes after a heart attack. But sometimes they are hard to make 
On of his beautiful tiles. They sell for 60 pesos. I use them on the dinner table to hold hot pots or dishes. By rubbing paste wax on them you can get a lovely shine. You can put either felt pieces or Rubbermaid shelf liner on the bottom of them so they dot scratch your furniture. . 
This is the old mold for the bigger tile he no longer makes. We have a couple those tiles at home and one in the RV. 
Here is a video I took of him making one of the new smaller round tiles yesterday. To make it full screen Click Here.
First the metal base is oiled with linseed oil. Then the colors for the design are selected. A hard bristle brush is lightly dipped in the colors. The brush is held over the metal plate and a piece of metal is scrapped along the bristles of the brush. This puts tiny drops of color on the metal plate. Then a form for the sides of the tile is placed around the bottom plate. Next he pours dabs of a powdered marble slurry on top of the colors.  A small amount is placed in a tub and water is added to it. It is then poured in blobs over the colors in the metal form. He is using a blue for the background color. The original colors seep up through the blobs of marble. Then a high tech method is used to make the design. Actually the eraser end of a pencil is pulled through the marble to make the design. It can be pulled in lines, circles, squares - any way the designer wants. Next dry cement is carefully sifted and patted over the marble. Then a layer of coarse wet sand is added. A very heavy metal plated shaped to fit the mold is placed on top of everything.  The entire mold is then put into the press. Then Jorge grabs the pipe/lever and activates the press. He then releases the lever, takes the mold out of the press and removes the wet tile. The tile takes a day to be finished. It first has to be soaked in water then set out to dry. 

Here are the ones we bought. The colors are brighter then they show here. And will be brighter still after they are waxed. 
 Looking at it from the side. The top colors then the cement and sand.
He is putting them in a bag for us. 
An unusual color of bougainvillea in front of the church. 
We went out of town a different way then we usually do, a newly painted house - Mexican pink and lavender Looks like they are adding a second story brick by brick. Many families buy bricks when they can afford them - brick by brick. When they have enough they will build their house or add on to it. 
The front of this house is entirely tile squares.
Just caught my eye so I took a picture. 
From Malpica we continued to head east - we would eventually end up in the tiny town of Copala - but that is for next time. We turned off the highway to go to the natural hot springs that supply the ladies of this area with hot water to wash their clothes. Oops he was showing off when something went wrong.
Here is a Google satellite picture of the hot water wash basins. They are pretty big. See the blue line. I told Bill there was a different road to take to get back to the main highway and did he want to go that way. He did - never again. Our friend Mark who was driving a rental used good judgement and went back to the highway the way we'd come in. Good thinking Mark. But not as exciting a ride. 
The facilities are at the red dot on the map at the top of this blog. 
Some of the pictures are from our trip here last week and some from yesterday. This is last week. There were several women using the facilities.There are four pools. The fist one is where the hot water comes up from the hot spring and the water in it is very hot - barely able to stick your hand in it. The second pool is a little cooler and where most of the ladies wash their clothes. The government built these facilities years ago - don't know when but will eventually find out. There are clothes lines strung all over the area. We have known the lady in green for years - also a couple more of the ladies know us. The white bags contain dirty laundry. 
See the older gentleman sitting in the water? He lives in Mazatlan and every other week he comes up here to soak in the hot mineral water. At other times we've seen children being bathed in the water and teenagers just fooling around in the water - usually in the fourth and coolest pool. 
He is dipping out the very hot water to take to his house. 
Waiting for mom to finish her laundry. 
He is just enjoying the weather, water and laughter.
There are wash basins on the outside of the pools where the clothes are actually washed. See the pile of clothes to the right of the man.
There are two of these wash board tubs - one on each side of the pool. They have a drain for the water. 

She is bringing her agitator - a pole with the top half of a soda bottle attached to it. When she put dirty clothes into a tub of water she uses this to agitate the water, soap and clothes. She uses it kind of like a plunger. 

To do that the clothes are in the blue bucket behind the white bag. 
Right now they are talking with Bill. Every time we come here we bring candy for the children. [and the adults] It is getting so the recognize the Jeep.
The pool on the right is the second pool and the most used. The the two cooler pools. [this was from yesterday, it was a cooler cloudy day and not many doing wash.]
Coming home from school and they see the Jeep. 

Hottest water to the right, coolest the left pool. 
We left the ladies and took a different road out Oh boy.
Then continued on to Copala.


Mark said...

Yes I agree with you that I took the better way back to the road. But on the toll road I did manage to hit a pretty large rock and did a bit of rearranging of the front of the rental car. Was a great day with great people.

Carol and Bill said...

Sorry about that. Glad you had a good day otherwise.