North America · 23 Days · 31 Moments · December 2017

Hector's tour through Mexico


3 January 2018

After our final goodbyes at my sister’s we took an efficient Uber to the airport and left Mexico mid afternoon without a glitch! As usual these last goodbyes are always “bittersweet” as there’s a sense of sadness as well as anticipation to get back home. Our stopover in San Francisco was unusually uneventful, US customs was incredibly friendly and polite and there were no queues! Then we managed to take a couple of hours of relaxed but intense shopping at a shopping mall on Powell street BART station! Got some great bargains for the 2 of us, then we got back to SFO just in time to board our last leg flight back to NZ! 12 hours later we were magically back in Auckland! It always amazes us how that happens... ‘United’ service and food have a lot to be desired but nonetheless they brought us back , safe and sound! BACK IN NZ! We know we are home when we hear the call of the Karanga as we walk through the Maori carving and, as we walk by, we hear the sounds of native birds...we are HOME.

1 January 2018

“El recalentado” the day after New Years Eve we get together again to “reheat” the leftovers and spend more time with each other...for us this means spending a few more valuable hours with our family before we wrap up our trip and head back to New Zealand... I love listening to what they all have to share and how they feel about stuff going on in their lives...it fills me up like no other experience... once again enriching our family bond.
Our last quesadillas con “Lucha” at the mercado de Coyoacán and our last “conchas con frijoles” at my sister’s for our last breakfast before we departed back to NZ! Nice way of wrapping up this magical journey!

31 December 2017

M E X N E W Y E A R ‘ S E V E 2017! No doubt about it, we are a ‘lucky lot’! Getting together with the Bustillos family and friends ‘one more time’ to wrap up the year and welcome a new one is a beautiful experience, although it may seem like a replay of our ‘Xmas eve’ all over again, it has a few different touches! There is a sense of multiple feelings floating around the room...relieve, pride, joy, hope, gratefulness, loyalty, unity, solidarity, respect and most importantly family love 💖! In reflection...I’m absolutely conscious that this is not the case all over the world for many, thus my saying we are a “lucky lot” and I do not take this for granted, ever! As we carry on with our lives on our chosen paths, we should always treasure these beautiful moments as if they were the ‘first or the last’... We now have a new year in our hands, a fresh page, a clean slate, a brand new chance to have, do, be and become more than what we are... Happy New Year 2018!
BREKKIE with the Soto’s at “El sabor del tiempo” A Mexican style breakfast so much liked by us!!! Super yumm! Love the “conchitas con nata”, the eggs , hot chocolate, ambiance, decoration and great service! All at a very reasonable price...can’t beat that! We love it!

30 December 2017

F A M I L Y + T A C O S = M E X I C O We all truly love tacos 🌮 and getting together! Yesterday we got the word out that we wanted to go to “Los Sifones” , a unique Taco place that makes their own Square tortillas and adds avocado 🥑 to most tacos...YUMM 😋!! All of a sudden most of the family showed up!! Can’t miss out on something like that!!! This is México 🇲🇽!! Love 💕 it! #mexico #tacos #family www.hectormexikiwi.com

24 December 2017

XMAS EVE 2017! The event that we’ve come for and been waiting for! It is something that I treasure as this allows to reconnect with our family members once a year, specially living so far away in New Zealand 🇳🇿 . Words cannot describe the feelings of joy amongst us throughout the entire evening, it is a time when nothing else matters...you simply put life on hold for a few hours and everything is fine... Love 💕 it! #xmaseve #mexicoxmas

23 December 2017

I T ‘S S A T U R D A Y B 4 X M A S! Tomorrow evening is the big event, Xmas eve , something we look forward to with great anticipation each year, I can’t wait for all to come round to my sister’s tomorrow evening... meanwhile final preparations need to get organised... The Xmas tree 🌲 is ready, the Xmas decorations are in place and “Kiwi Santa” 🎅🏼 🎁 has arrived!! All that was left to do was to pop by our favourite bakery to get the rolls for the Xmas day “recalentado” lunch, this bakery is like a ‘mirage’ for any bread 🥖 and pastry lover...and the number one enemy of your waistline 😜!! Sooo delicious 😋 . Now, it’s only 24 hours to go before everyone is here... can’t wait 🤓🤩😬🇲🇽🎄💫🎁 #xmasiscoming #mexicansweetbread #pandedulce #navidad #familytime
Lovely lunch at “el fogoncito” best *gringas ever ( tacos al pastor with cheese in a flour tortilla ) ** although there was an unexpected glitch with these tacos, we still like this place ; ).

22 December 2017

A S P E C I A L D I N N E R! In celebration of their 40th wedding anniversary we enjoyed a wonderful dinner with my sis Silvia Bustillos and her husband Gustavo Soto. We went to one of their favourite restaurants, “San Ángel Inn” ...in an amazingly beautiful setting in what used to be a monastery in an old Hacienda style building, this elite restaurant is elegantly decorated and their food is served in beautiful Mexican style china on white cloth tables. They pride themselves on providing you with an amazing five-star service that makes you feel very special indeed. Their excellent gourmet Mexican cuisine is delicious 😋 and worth every penny! Loved it! Coming back next year? ...You bet 😉🥘🇲🇽😊 #mexico #mexicanfood #sanangelinn #family
C O Y O A C A N CD MX - WALK A wonderful day in the picturesque township of Coyoacán, only a 15 minute walk away from my sister’s home , it’s houses 🏠 , markets, people , street and stall vendors and variety of beautiful handcrafts makes it quite a charming place to relax and get a bit lost while walking around and ‘taking it all in’ ...Talking about taking it all in...we wrapped up the afternoon at “El Wero” tortas!! A famous and extremely popular “Tortas” place, also just around the corner from my sister’s home... these “tortas” are out of this world!! (Only NZ$3.50 each) They are truely delicious , I just couldn’t help having a whole Torta myself!!...so MASSIVE and quite filling but...none the less, I ate it all 😜!! Now I only hope we can digest this “light 🥙 lunch” soon so that we can have a great dinner 🥘 tonight 🙄 #mexicantortas #coyoacan #cdmx www.hectormexikiwi.com

20 December 2017

B A C K I N C D M X! After some amazing “road trip days” we are back in Mexico City to spend time with family and friends. We started by having a lovely lunch with my sis Silvia Bustillos and her husband Gustavo Soto at a very nice taco place in Coyoacán, just what we needed ! Today we finalised our Xmas Herby presents shopping list at the “Mex Herby-Embassy”. Got there on a quick ride on the highly efficient Mexico City Metro 🚇! Nothing like a fast and economical underground ride (35 nz cents a ride) in a silent train to get around town while avoiding the chaotic traffic above ground 😉 ...Love it! #mxcd #mexicocity #mexico #family #herbalifemexico #herbypresents #xmasiscoming #hectormexikiwi www.hectormexikiwi.com
MADE IT BACK TO CDMX!! A quick 1 hour flight back and an Easy Uber ride into town back to my sisters Silvia and a welcome back lunch at a great Taco place in Coyoacán...spot on!
LATERS Guadalajara! We had 3 beautiful days in Guadalajara with my sis and family!

19 December 2017

G U A D A L A J A R A D A Y 2! Breakfast at “El ranchero” to have what they call “Tacos Planchados” a unique style of tacos I’d never had before. They are absolutely Awesome Tacos 🌮 😎 !! For less than NZ$1 each! Then we went to Tonalá, a nearby township to see how they make glass handcrafts, wow 😮 😲 what a skill, what a craft! It takes years to become a master at this, and they create beautiful things , I’ve certainly gained a different level of respect for this craft and for these people , loved it 😊. We then had lunch at “El Mesón” , great food in a prestigious setting, I tried their unique Grilled ‘bone 🍖 marrow’ and Tortilla soup! YUMM! Thank you Gerardo, a family friend, who runs this place, for making us feel welcome. We wrapped up the day visiting with my nephew Miguel and Paula and their beautiful Mikaela who is just about to turn 1 ... so lovely to see them settled as a family and growing as one....Family times...irreplaceable 😊 #guadalajara #family #mexico #tonala

18 December 2017

G U A D A L A J A R A D A Y 1! We had a wonderful family day in Guadalajara...went to check out some of the local flora and then had lunch 🥗 at “Karnes Garibaldi” to have a traditional “Carne en su jugo” a local delicious 😋 dish! As we got home we found their new poppy dog 🐕 “Sansa” had decided to drink up my herbal aloe and destroy my Herbalife drink bottle!( Must’ve been upset that she had drunk it all and there was no more ! 😜😮😆🤪) We wrapped up the evening at my cousins place to have a lovely family dinner and a serious catching up! So much fun , thank you Luisa Guerrero for having us! Family times...irreplaceable 😊 #guadalajara #family #mexico

17 December 2017

M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 6! It was a 3 magical days in SMA, without a doubt a place that which such charm can make an imprint in anyone’s book of treasured spots... we wrapped up our visit with an early brekkie on the street, at the foot of a church, as the bells were calling their congregation to come in for Sunday morning mass... we sat there eating our delicious tamales with a nice “atole de chocolate” Yummm! We headed up to the view point “el mirador” to take a “One last look” at this magical town from high above...breathless... we said “bye San Miguel de Allende” and hit the road to Guadalajara, and without any challenges at all we made it in less than 4 hours to this grand metropolis of 4.3 million people , the second largest city in Mexico 🇲🇽 ! My sister Leticia and brother in law Miguel were waiting for us! It’s been around 5 years since our last visit.

16 December 2017

Our last evening in San Miguel de Allende, walking around the plaza while the church bells 🔔 were ringing and hundreds of people were simply hanging around, like waiting for something magical to happen, but most don’t realise “the magic is already in place”... there is a strong sense of peacefulness amongst the crowd , young and old, kids and grandpas, laughing , taking pictures , smiling and being kind to one another and nobody seemed to want to go home or to their hotel... maybe it is the Xmas spirit in the air , or maybe it is the SMA sprit instilled into all of us as we get magically relaxed and transformed into more peaceful and humble and kind individuals simply by being here.... thank you SMA, we loved every minute... #sanmigueldeallende #welovesma #lovethejourney www.hectormexikiwi.com
M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 5! A nice Brekkie & Herby shake at the markets got us going real fast! We wandered around some of the arty streets of SMA and came across some extremely wonderful art work, from outstanding paintings to some out of this world wood furnishings carved out of massive trees turned into tables and bookcases and even a comfy seat inside a tree 🌲 trunk 😮! Truely unreal.... ended up back at the markets for lunch to indulge in a “little” chicken schnitzel TORTA ... Yummm! And as we were walking out we came across some local “lucha libre” ( Mexican wrestling 🤼‍♀️ ) , so a dinner and a show for $3 NZD each! So good!! 🌮🥘😎🇲🇽🚙🌵🌍 Loving it! 💗#lovethejourney #luchalibre #sanmigueldeallende #marketsfood #mexicoroadtrip www.hectormexikiwi.com

15 December 2017

M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 4! We started with delish Mexican Brekkie and a beautiful Day roaming the streets of this Magical Town ... San Miguel de Allende...As we approached the plaza there was a wedding about to get started so we went ahead and crashed the wedding 🎩 of some locals at the Perroquia!!! Somehow it looked like we were the only ones not formally invited and the only ones taking pictures too! 😜😮 We sat through the whole ceremony , this was the 1st time for Helen Bustillos to attend a catholic wedding 👰 and the first time for me as an adult! ( Quite an interesting thing...) After the wedding we went on walking 🚶🏻‍♀️ around until we were a bit tired , so we sat for a while at the plaza to have a lovely lemon 🍋 icecream 🍦”Tasted just as I remember it did when I was a young kid”. Then we came across a place that made fresh “gorditas” and we just had to dig in! So good

14 December 2017

A light supper and An evening stroll at the SMA Plaza...mariachis, Xmas lights and horse riders!! Magic! #sanmigueldeallende #justchilling
There was a street parade just as we were going back to our hotel in San Miguel de Allende , so cool!
M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 3!! Made it out of TX this morning and headed up to San Miguel de Allende, but not before a lovely custom made breakfast at the markets , Mexican style scrambled eggs 🍳 MAGIC!! And Our HERBY-SHAKE made with Freshly squeezed orange 🍊 juice with a fruit salad thrown into the mix and formula #1 Herbalife Vanilla shake , súper think and “súper delicioso”!! We also managed to get hold of some of the famous “campechanas and polvorones” only found in TX, which are delicious pastries! Thanks to my sister Leticia, who asked us to stop by this secret bakery to get some, we were luckily able to find it, this bakery’s door is closed and one must ring the door bell 🛎 to get service, an old tradition I’m told , and they are amazing! A short 2 hour drive north took us into another Magical Town ... San Miguel de Allende...WOW, what a charismatic town! We love it!

13 December 2017

Our last evening in TX! A “Light dinner”...a nice bowl of a Delish ‘Aztec soup’ (tortilla bits in slices, chicharrón, avocado, crispy bacon bits, cheese and Sour cream in a spicy tomato soup base ) YUMMMM! 🥘 and then a short stroll 🚶‍♂️ 🚶🏻‍♀️ Just right... 👌! #hitthespot #txatnight #tequisquiapan
M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 2! Woke up late (7 am ) not my usual 4 am and very slowly we managed to get out of our cosy bed 🛏, 3 blankets were required for a cold night in TX but by 10 am we were roaming the cobble stone streets of TX , loving the quietness of the place , the quaint traditional houses , and the peaceful local people getting on with their jobs , opening their shops, getting their raw milk 🥛 delivered to their place, etc. all onto their daily chores, even a friendly ant 🐜 carrying a leaf 🍃 that looked like a flag 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 keeping busy with its job at hand , so we’ve named it “Ant-onio Banderas” (bandera is flag in Spanish😜). We fueled up with a beautiful HERBY SHAKE made with fresh fruits at the juice stand! Then after a Walk in a peaceful park and a look at the beautiful handcrafts markets we wrapped up the morning sight-seeing with a wonderfully delicious meal at the markets for less than $5 NZD each! 🌮🥘😎🇲🇽🚙🌵🌍 Loving it! 💗

12 December 2017

Tamales at the corner stand! Yumm
Magical family moments at Silvia’s place!
M E X I C O Road and Magical Food trip, DAY 1! It all started with delicious Tamales from the street stall, tamales in a bun! YUMM! 1 NZD each!! Not bad at all ! 😜 we got into our rental , a very nice “Passat” and eventually made it out of México City , 3 hours later we made it to “Barbacoa Santiago ” a famous barbacoa place just outside Tequisquiapan. We enjoyed an absolutely out of this world barbacoa!! It was totally melting in our mouths 😮😯 😙🌮🌮 . We finally the made it to our cute ‘Hacienda style’ hotel in Tequisquiapan , thank goodness for GPS and Lupita (that’s what we call the lady guiding us on google maps )because it I was an absolute miracle making it here, on the Virgin of Guadalupe’s day, one of the most religious days in Mexico 🇲🇽 hadn’t it been for that , we might’ve ended up in the middle of nowhere ! It’s all good and part of the fun 😎🇲🇽🚙🌵🌍 Loving it! 💗#lovethejourney #tequisquiapan #barbacoa #mexicoroadtrip www.hectormexikiwi.com

11 December 2017

As tradition goes we always pop by Herbalife to say hi and fill up on products that we may need. Somehow it is a great feeling being able to do this, it is like going into our embassy where everyone speaks the same language and where they recognise your face and greet you with a big smile! #herbalifemexico

10 December 2017

In Mexico at long last after an uneventful 16 hour flight! Got onto our first tacos with our welcoming party of family members , nothing like it!! Love this place “los hornillos”
Boarding our connecting flight to Mexico in Houston