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A Search for the Enchufe in Pedregal de Santo Domingo

Published December 20, 2021 in Personal Stories & Opinions - 0 Comments

About 4 days ago, I moved to an old neighborhood called Pedregal de Santo Domingo as I wrote in previous articles.

When I woke up, I realized I had a small problem.

Given that I work with my laptop to make money, I obviously need my laptop to work to be down here.

Though, when it came time to turn my laptop on to get some stuff done, I realized I couldn’t charge my laptop as you can see here.

In all my time in Mexico, this is the very first time I had ever come across this down here.

I’ve had this issue in Europe for example when I was traveling briefly around that region some odd years ago.

But never have I had this issue in Mexico despite all of the places I’ve moved into over the years.

And, to my annoyance, this is the only place in my room where I can charge anything.

Thankfully, I was able to charge my phone with it.

But I still need my laptop.

So I went through my suitcase looking for an adapter-converter that might work.

I know I had one for when I was in Europe but, unfortunately for me, I couldn’t find it in my suitcase.

Thankfully, the issue was soon resolved and this actually turned out to be a little “Spanish lesson” day for me.

No matter how many years I have studied or spoken in Spanish to live down here, it’s not my native language and there’ll always be plenty of words I have never heard before.

On that day, I asked my landlord how to resolve the issue.

She told me that there’s a “tlapaleria” by the apartment and I can buy a “enchufe de tres” as you can see here.

So there’s are two new words for me – “tlapaleria” and “enchufe de tres.”

I knew I would have to buy an adapter-converter but was worried I’d have to buy it on Mercado Libre online and wait some odd days for it to show up.

Well, when googling “tlapalerias near me,” I saw there were a bunch close by in case one was closed or something!

So off I went.

On a Mission for the Enchufe

Though there wasn’t a “tlapaleria” literally by the corner, there was one a few streets away.

And, thankfully for me, the first one I found wasn’t closed.

So the issue was resolved.

Some young guy near the front immediately grabbed one and charged me only 14 pesos for it or roughly 70 cents.

And it worked when I got home!

Though I didn’t head home right away as I got a haircut, signed up for 3 months of access to a gym nearby, got lunch and then came across some street vendor who was trying to sell me his product as you can see here.

It caught my attention because it’s meant to kill cockroaches, bedbugs, etc.

Thankfully, as of this writing, I have yet to see any bugs in this building.

Living in Mexico, that’s a nice fucking detail.

The usual bugs I’ve had issue with in this country have been mosquitoes and sometimes cockroaches.

Though, as I wrote here, I had bedbug issues once at a old place by El Centro of Mexico City.

But probably cockroaches at a third of the places I’ve been to annoyingly enough.

So this cheap product did catch my eye in case I ever need it in the future.

Only 30 pesos worth, he told me!

Does it work?

I didn’t buy it nor do I need it right now as my current place doesn’t seemingly have any bug issues.

Not even mosquitos!

Either way, I took a picture so I can have the guy’s number in case I ever do it need the line if I ever move again and am unlucky in a new place.

Above all though, the guy was very nice.

Similar to people I meet in other areas outside the touristy zone of Latin America, you get A LOT more curiosity about it by the locals when you’re the only gringo in town.

The guy was genuinely surprised by why I live in this area and what made me choose to live in Mexico for 4.5 years now.

But overall very nice and just genuinely curious.

In short, I like dealing with locals more outside of touristy areas as they tend to be friendlier and are less likely to see you as an ATM machine in my experience.

Either way, I went home after that and got my laptop working.

Final Thoughts

It’s a pretty small and not so significant story to be fair.

But there’s 4 lessons I would end on as to what I’d like to convey most importantly.

First, as I said, non-touristy areas can have their advantage for having friendlier and more down to earth folks to be talking with.

Second, as a general travel trip to anywhere in the world, you should have some adapter-converter just in case.

Given how damn cheap this one was, I’m thinking of going back and buying more for other types of conversions I’d need hypothetically.

It’s so much cheaper than the adapter-converters you can buy on Amazon in the US that are supposed to work for anything.

Third, for those who don’t know, the street outside my apartment has a huge market with endless amounts of local businesses for everything you need.

It’s one thing I like about this area in that, relative to other parts of Mexico City, I find it so much easier to find what I’m looking for down here than elsewhere.

With street vendors all over the place selling anything really.

And usually much cheaper when you live off the touristy zone.

All around much more convenient.  

Recommended for anyone looking to live in Latin America.

Fourth, always use every opportunity to improve your Spanish. Like that day, I learned the words for “enchufe” and “tlapaleria.”

Anyway, that’s all I got to say.

Got anything to add? Drop a comment below in the comment section.

And follow my Twitter here.

Best regards,


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