The third town on our 3 day outing is Talpa de Allende or “Talpa” for short. The drive from Mascota to Talpa is made on a good, safe road that was only completed about 4 years ago and it is no stranger to the many tourists that come up from PV or down from Guadalajara. Just prior to cresting the plateau and looking down into Talpa, we came upon the La Cruz de Romero scenic over-look. Sitting in front of us was this chapel
that not only comforts those that travel by and those that look up from below. It also invited us to stop
for a climb to the top for one more amazing view and a physical challenge for us “oldies”. Standing at the top
and following the road that we were to travel from the chapel to Talpa, we were amazed at the forests of maple, oak and fir trees as well as local species of orchids and ferns…
Talpa is also one of Mexico’s most cherished pilgrimage sites. For centuries the devout have walked from the coastal Jalisco and Nayarit (2 states of Mexico) and Guadalajara to show their devotion to the “Virgin of Talpa”.
The icon is housed in Talpa’s basilica, which was built in her honor in 1782.
There is an old story that “shortly after the virgin was found in the mid-1600's, she disappeared to Mascota because the mayor wanted the devoted coming to his town. Mysteriously the virgin kept returning to Talpa until the mayor finally gave up”. After checking out the church and the chapel of Our Lady of Talpa (where the Virgin resides in a glass case) we crossed the street and toured the church museum and then onto the many different souvenir shops around the plaza. Also we found several shops throughout town that made this sweet “rollos de guayaba” or something that I (not Louise) recognized more as “fruit roll”. The big difference was this “roll” was much thicker and thus a lot sweeter. I felt it was just too sweet for my liking but obviously well liked by the Mexican community venturing into town. Speaking of sweet, on the way back to La Penita (117 miles) we stopped off to visit a local tequila distillery
and have a couple of samples (except us drivers of course). Louise picked up a bottle of almond tequila that now sits hidden away (for a rainy day I guess…).