Chapel of Jimmy Ray

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Chapel of Jimmy Ray 

The Chapel of Jimmy Ray located in the countryside 5 km from San Miguel de Allende can be visited by appointment. The owner is Anando McLaughlin, evidently, Jimmy Ray is fictional. You can contact Anando by email from his website to set up a day and time.  You’ll need at least an hour to walk the gardens and house and hear his story.  

Getting there

Our group of three artists from Florida (New England in the summer) have rented an Airbnb in San Miguel de Allende for 10 days of sightseeing and painting.  Not having a car, our only mode of transportation is a taxi. We had an idea of how far it was from town, but the directions were sketchy. We decided to hail a cab in San Miguel, surely the driver would know the location of such a well-known site…. alas, he had no clue and spoke very little English. Jeanne used a little Italian-Mexican (wink) to get something across and we eventually arrived. Anando was at the gate and told us the driver must wait or we’d never get a taxi to return for us! Another guest arrived and was told the same. Anando spoke to the drivers and for an extra fee, they would wait.  

What can I say about Anando! Flamboyant, annoying, talented, crazy, they all seemed to fit. He’s American but has lived in Mexico for decades with his partner. He has a long white beard, glasses, crazy clothes, and an abrupt personality. Our first impression was of an annoying nut, but he warmed on us as he showed us through his amazing property.  

Anado McLaughlin

Anando and Richard live in what they call Casa de las Ranas.  Its a large property set up a rutted road with a large gate guarding the entrance.  The sign on the main road is small so you really have to know what to look for. 

Mosaic is the main source of the art and there’s a large pile of glass bottles lying around waiting to be used.  Anando is currently working on a long fence depicting a snake. Incredible.   

The gardens and the interior of the house are walls-to-wall brightly colored art and kooky sculpture.  Anando has an envious studio full of “stuff” to create more! Walking through the property is an endless LSD trip. Everywhere you look is shocking bright color and creativity. We got a huge kick out of the place but left feeling sensory overload. I don’t think I could live with all that riot and color. It was, however, worth a visit.

About

I'm in my sixties with the world at my feet and thoughts mostly of "where to next?". I retired in 2017, sold my house in Massachusetts and most of my furniture and "stuff." When not traveling you can find me in Florida in the winter and Rhode Island in the summer. Travel has been a passion from a young age, over the years I've discovered I'm a traveler, not a tourist. I prefer traveling solo, with a travel friend, or small groups. Whenever possible I would rather spend time in one place rather than moving around. I'll never turn down an opportunity to go to France, but my travels have taken me all over the world. I've met some incredible people and had some fantastic experiences.

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