Spiky cacti and new foods

Andrew has become the defacto morning parent (thanks hun!), and on this particular day, it was Emerson who woke up first. The two boys changed into their bathing suits and hit the pool to play pretend cooking class with fallen leaves and a plastic bowl. Emerson’s teeth were chattering and his lips purple, but it was too fun to get out. Unfortunately for Andrew, Shiloh slept in, giving him no excuse to towel off.

In the late afternoon, we wandered through galleries and shops, then stepped into a Spanish language tour of the botanical gardens. (The tour in English happens only once daily and can’t be booked in advance.) Shiloh was naturally captivated, but Emerson took a bit more convincing. He’d been scared to go to the garden after we’d playfully told him there’d be spiky cacti. He didn’t want Shiloh to get hurt, he explained. But Coco had assured us he’d been and it was safe, so I entertained him with pretend stories about each plant: name, origins, uses, size… We debated about which plants were edible and what animals may have lived in each.

As Shiloh napped that afternoon, Emerson and I went out to find him a purse, but alas, yet another truck (this one a logging truck) was calling his name. After his treat had been secured, Shiloh and Andrew joined us at a chocolate shop for a quick sampling. It was a good foray into our final hoorah of the trip: a street food tour.

I could have just about cried when I saw Emerson carefully trying new foods (two bites of a fried quesadilla) while Shiloh reached for spicy moles and salsas. We strolled from food stand to food stand, some with crowds that rivaled those of Emerson’s hot cocoa stand during the after school rush.

The chaos is part of it, we were assured. But even our foodie child stopped enjoying himself by 7pm, so we hustled through the flavors until Shiloh dove into his bathroom crib for the night.