The obvious sounds and smells of PV are just what you’re thinking – taco stands and Mariachi bands – but there are a few other, if not odd, sounds and smells about town.
If you are out for an early morning walk, you have most certainly walked across wet sidewalks. The store owners actually wash the sidewalk with a cleaning agent called Pinol or Fabuloso. It usually has a clean, slightly floral scent that’s very distinctive.
You’ll know when you’re passing by a lavenderia from the lovely smells of the detergent. These are all privately owned, stop in and have your laundry washed and folded for about $50 pesos, it is often done the same day.
You have heard the trucks on the street with the loud recordings with horns blaring and wondered what that was all about – they are selling bottled gas. Many places, homes and businesses, use bottled gas for their stove, hot water and gas dryers.
If you’ve heard the sound of a long, high-pitched whistle, you’re probably close to a camote cart. One of the oldest Mexican street traditions, a camote cart sells plantains and sweet potato, served with strawberry jam and milk. It’s cooked on a bed of charcoal, inside an oven built into the cart. When the vendor releases steam from the oven through the little pipe, it makes this noise.
I know you have some favorite sounds and smells of PV – do tell!