Last evening started out like any other after work evening on a December night. We ran holiday errands and chatted excitedly with one another about this that and the other. We found some great gifts at the warehouse store and even ran into our favorite couple of (Bosom Buddies) that we often hang out and travel with. With everything moving along so smoothly we were completely unprepared for what happened next. It was a cold night high 40s, that’s cold for our area, and as we left the warehouse store we had our sights set on a warm delicious entree from our favorite little hole in the wall gem (El Paseo). We love Mexican food, next to steak it’s our absolute (go to) dinner, especially in the winter because it is less expensive and so comforting. Not to mention the kick from Lourdes’s salsa will put the heat back into any night.
We arrive and park and head anxiously down the strip mall corridor salivating at the thought of Lourdes’s one of kind enchiladas and the velvety smooth beans and rice that have become our staple. Then in an instant it happened! We reached the door and it was dark inside, and all the furniture and decor were missing! It was EMPTY! The signs were gone too?! We nearly tripped over our own jaws that lay on the pavement as we headed back to the truck in total shock and disbelief. How could this be?! What ever will we do?! We were just here a couple weeks ago. I liken this feeling to returning to your car with shopping bags in hand only to find the spot where you parked it vacant! Visions of our first tacos together, counting coins from the laundromat and family dinners spent laughing, trading niceties in Spanish with the owner Mark, happy tummies sharing with friends the best Mexican food ever, all swirled about our heads as we struggled to process what just happened.
It’s sprinkling now, we’re staring through the raindrops on the windshield as we drive around in circles uttering things like WTF?, not knowing what to do. We’ve been going to this restaurant since the inception of our relationship which is now going on 13 years. We were once even invited to the owners home for Thanksgiving. We had no idea it was closing. There were no we’re moving signs.. just gone, empty! I suppose we will grieve now, not just for ourselves, but for the owners, their family? I can only imagine what it must be like to lose a business you poured your heart and soul into for 15 years. Perhaps it’s a sign of the times? We are now on the hunt for a new favorite Mexican restaurant hangout, but it’s a lot like losing a favorite pet, you can get a new one… but it will never be the same.
7 thoughts on “RIP El Paseo. The best Mexican food ever will now exist only in fond memory.”
I hate when this happens! Sorry you lost your favorite place.
We had a lot of good memories there. 🙂 ah well.
Dani! I had no clue that you also had a WP blog! Man. I miss a lot when I don’t stroll around the web as I normally would.
So sorry to hear about your fave place. It sucks. You have no clue where the owners are now? I don’t have a favorite restaurant yet as I don’t often eat outside. I usually have this “Ahh man” feeling when they change recipes of food or drinks. I don’t get it. Why do they feel the urge to tinker a recipe that’s already popular?
Sweet TJ, I haven’t had my WP blog very long, but I am so glad I have set one up here. No we have no idea what became of the owners. sighs… I think restaurants change recipes because they are hoping to stay with the times, but I totally agree with you if they have something winning leave it alone. 🙂 I am curious to know what kinds of foods you eat in Holland? Thank you for coming to visit me here. 🙂
Ah that makes me feel a wee bit better 🙂 I need to keep stalking you hehe.
Well, I’m more familiar with my mom and dad’s cuisine. We’ve been brought up to be careful with what we eat and to eat healthy. Dishes are always with rice, some sort of meat/chicken and vegetables. Some names are “nasi”, “bami”, “roti”, also a lot of curry chicken haha. I’ll look up a site for you, so you can have a browse. My dad is more of the creole/portuguese cuisine. Mabe because of the diversity in food at home, I didn’t have the urge to eat a lot outside. I only did this with friends. Going to McDonalds didn’t happen that often and whenever my mom bought some Chinese take-out, it was a feast. Oh! I also mentioned on a post of Jen, that I only ordered pizza like once haha. Other than that, I cook and try out recipes and buy frozen pizza for when I really want to have a quick fix OR I make my own pizza. hehe.
Typical Dutch dish is e.g.mashed potatoes with sausage and e.g. cabbage. ^_^
mashed potatoes with sausage and cabbage sounds yummy. In America people eat out a lot. We don’t spend the time on food that we should. Noelle and I are trying to eat healthier. It’s hard cause here our foods are poisoned with GMO’s and hormones. You almost never know what you are getting. I find it quite worrisome. I so appreciate two visits from you in one day. 🙂
YAY!! 🙂 I looooove mashed potatoes and sausage! Kale is very traditional, but at home they find that it tastes like grass haha. I like it though. Very often I stir-fry e.g. paprika with carrots and corn. So it’s still fresh and crunchy or I use spinach. I suppose any vegetable would work!
Yeah, such sadness what people do with food huh? It’s so messed up. I don’t think the food in Holland is THAT healthy as well. I’m pretty sensitive to food that’s too greasy or high in sugar and since I can’t control what I get outside I tend to make it myself. I hardly buy cookies or cake anymore.