On Monday, Elisa met us at the house to lead us to the gallery where we would drop off and display our work. I rode with her and she pointed out sights along the way. At the gallery, we met Juan Diego Roldan, the director. He was really pleased with the quality and variety of our work. The gallery space is modest, but located in the lobby of a building where many language and cultural classes are held. I was pleased to hear that the exhibit would be used as a teaching tool in English classes, and that seemed a fitting way to extend our gallery's mission of outreach and education far beyond its walls.
That day we also met two of the artists who will be coming to Omaha in June. Lorena admired our work as we unpacked it all. Martha met us later and came back to the house, where she and Elisa prepared a lovely dinner for us all.
After we had all our work unwrapped, we went to lunch at a nearby restaurant known for its ceviche. It was the best I'd ever had. The local fish, corvina, is a firm, white-fleshed fish, a type of bass, according to my Lonely Planet phrasebook and dictionary. With limes, red onions, avacado and cilantro, the ceviche was a refreshing light meal in itself. We added a shared plate of garlicky sautéed shrimp and rice to make sure we were all quite full.
We then went to the studio of well-known artist Isidro con Wong, where we saw his paintings and fabulous sculptures. The son of a farmer and cattleman, con Wong uses imagery of the Brahma bull often in his work.
After a rather harrowing drive in the dark back to Atenas where motorcycles dart between trucks and people stand in between lanes where traffic is slowed trying to sell snacks. Elisa and Martha roasted chickens, made pico de gallo and guacamole, black beans served with warm corn tortillas. Sitting around the table sharing stories, good food and wine was a delightful way to close out this busy day.