“. . . ‘Buenas dias!’ As we leisurely approached the restaurant hostess, the warm smile on her deep brown face was very comforting and elicited a return grin reflex. She astutely recognized us as guests of the hotel and asked if we wanted to be seated at a table. Hungry from hiking, we obliged.
Similar greetings were rapidly fired our way from scurrying waiters and even the three or so cooks behind the kitchen counter. Most of the tables of the shaded courtyard were occupied with the most lethargic of patrons, though their pedigrees were as varied as Valladolid’s bright Colonial houses. Weary travelers in worn hiking shorts sat cross-legged and typed on laptops next to workers whose faces wore a fine layer of zócalo dirt who lunched alongside the familiar faces of the local police force. But for all, time moved somewhat slower in the fern filtered light of the early afternoon sun.”