Mexico was calling our names

What exactly do we do when some comes to Tucson for the first time? We take 'em to Mexico of course. With Arnold in town, Mike and I decided a trip to Nogales was in order.

There isn't much to do in Nogales, especially if you've been there before, like we have ... after you eat and shop a bit, you're out of activities. We had some yummy carne asada. And then we shopped. And shopped. And shopped so more. Okay, so we mostly looked at a lot of stuff, but bought nothing ... until we found a painting for our living room (pictured below).

Our living room wall is HUGE, and we have been wanting to buy something for it since we moved in. Mike wanted something a little crazy. He keeps saying we need a piece of art that really gets people talking. Dogs on a hunt. A very snooty pastoral scene. All sorts of crazy ideas have floated around and I always say no. But while in Nogales, I saw a painting of the San Xavier del Bac Mission, which is in Tucson, and thought it would be perfect for out house. Mike tried to barter with the seller, but the guy wouldn't budge, which was surprising as Mike is a GREAT negotiator. He wanted a lot ($300) more than we wanted to spend. We moved on to some other shops where I spotted a painting with a nice desert scene, but no mission. As I started to walk out of the shop, the owner said "You want da mission? I'll add da mission."

Whatever, so I thought. And then when I walked passed the same shop 15 minutes later, the owner practically had to drag me inside ... to show me the new, improved version of the painting. He had summoned the local artist responsible for the painting and had added the mission. All in about 15 minutes. Of course, I just had to buy it. But the seller wanted more money than I actually had with me ... and he wouldn't just take my $60. In the end, I traded him a bag of organic pumpkin seed and pistachio trail mix, along with $60 for the painting (it's all I had in my purse he thought was worth taking. Lucky for me, he didn't see my Louis Vuitton wallet).

I'll admit, the painting is a little tacky, but I love it. And the memory of what it took to get it, makes me love it even more. Mike and Arnold were just laughing at me the whole time, not thinking I'd actually get a painting, one with the mission in it and for less than $100. Mission accomplished.