Something posted by the wonderful and talented Pat over at Single for a Reason reminded me of a funny moment I had in Mexico years ago. I was out for the day with my lovely, lovely friend The Harpist. She took me out to Metepec to look at pottery. I still have the gorgeous plate I purchased that day, and still fantasize about outfitting my kitchen entirely with Metepec dishes.
As we walked around from one gloriously-appointed workshop to another, my friend remembered something in town she wanted to show me: there’s a special product that many artisans in Metepec make, something really fabulous that I would be amazed to see, something really particular to Mexico … oh, if only we could find a shop with some examples on display …
And then we found one. A small shop full of Los Animales de Chia. Yes, I’m not kidding. The amazing, fabulous thing to see was a Chia Pet! Seriously. They were pretty nice, though, I have to admit. Some were huge, a chia sheep as big as a cow, for example. Still with their heads glazed with that gorgeous black-bronze glaze that we all know and love, but nothing like the ones sold on Saturday morning TV. Much more beautifully cast, much more noble-looking somehow. Sculptures, not caricatures.
I loved the discovery that chia pets weren’t just some wacky thing with an even wackier jingle from my childhood TV memories. And there were so many different kinds, so many sizes. And, bigger surprise, it turns out that Chia (part of the Salvia family, who knew?) is purported to have multiple health benefits, and that’s why people were all into growing the stuff. My brain did a real double take on that when the artisan explained it to me (through the translation of my friend). Chia is good for me?
See, this is why I love to travel. You learn all kinds of way cool stuff!
is hosted by Stacey and Ruth at Two Writing Teachers.