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North America » Mexico » Guanajuato » Guanajuato
July 25th 2011
Published: July 26th 2011
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Guanajuato - Leon


Saturday we drove to the city of Leon. Leon has 1.2 million inhabitants and is about 45 minutes from our casita. Leon used to be where the cowboys came to sell their cattle. What happens when you have an excess of cattle? An excess of leather goods!

Leon is known as ‘The Shoe Capital of the World’, and for good reason. We went to La Plaza de Zapato and every store inside the two story mall was totally devoted to shoes! Yes, ladies, I said shoes! There were cowboy boots, men’s Italian dress shoes, babies’ shoes, and of course, women’s shoes. I have never in all my life seen so many shoes. Unfortunately, I left my camera in the car.

Across the street there was another mall that had nothing but leather goods – jackets, purses, hats, key rings, you name it. I was looking for a store that sold water, but there was none in sight, only leather goods.

The stores that were in the mall were a bit more expensive; outside the mall, there were even more, albeit less expensive shoe stores in the Zona Piel, or Leather Zone. We walked through the labyrinth of shoes, mouths open in disbelief. I NEVER want to hear anything about my need for shoes again!

We had to get our mind straight after all those shoes (no, I didn’t buy any!), so we went to Panteon Taurino for lunch. Panteon Taurino is a restaurant/museum/sports bar that pays homage to bullfighters. It was so much fun. We were getting ready to go, when suddenly there were two very loud gunshots! One of the waiters had a bullfighter’s hat on. He jumped up on the bar and another waiter had an almost life-size cardboard cut-out of a bull. The waiter/bullfighter proceeded to sweep a cape in front of the bull! Then all of the waiters came out amongst the patrons; the same waiter had the bullfighter’s hat in his hand. He proceeded to pick a young girl out of the patrons. It was now her turn to fight the “bull”! She was very animated and definitely put on a good act.


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