I have less than a week to go before we depart. At the moment I’m frantic trying to get projects done that will be due while I’m gone. I’m also packing, which is best done over the period of a week (you’re less likely to forget something).
San Miguel is a unique fieldsite in that there is a great deal of web information about the town and day-to-day life. My husband, Ken, stumbled across a great website yesterday: What’s New and Exciting in San Miguel de Allende. The site is a portal for local news, events, and activities that are geared toward non-Mexican residents or visitors. There is also a great map of the city, which (believe it or not) has been hard to come by when I’ve been to San Miguel in the past. Because it is a tourist destination, the local maps are glossy tourist maps, not unlike those of Disney World. They’re fine if you want to navigate the tourist area, but if you need a comprehensive map of the city, they won’t work. The map I’ve linked above has a zoom-in feature that allows me to look at the city in small chunks, and allows me to become familiar with the street layout now. I’m not a map nut, but I find that if I spend some quality time studying maps before I get out on the street I get a feel of the place much more quickly.
This particular website, which is apparently operated by American expatriate, also gives a feel for the community as well as some of the local expat priorities and the places where people come together. Based on what I see here, and what I’ve read elsewhere, the library is cultural center. In addition to setting up appointments will the lovely people who have already contacted me, I plan to head to the library and several other key places mentioned on the site as a means of introducing myself to the community.