Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Finally, vacation in Mexico

It's our first full day on vacation in Mexico - we flew into Mexico City yesterday - and I'm already feeling better for being out of Austin and away from the job. Damn I love this town. If I could figure out a way to earn a living, I'd move here in a heartbeat.

We got up late (for me) and had a terrific breakfast at one of my favorite little diners in central Mexico City - I had a fat tamale Oaxequeña and fruit salad, while Kathy had Monterrey-style eggs, plus we both enjoyed lovely Mexican pastries and even good coffee (for years you couldn't find a decent cup anywhere in Mexico, to my knowledge, outside of Veracruz state). I love eating in Mexico!

Everywhere you look downtown are protest signs from the recent elections, which the leftist PRD party believes was stolen from their candidate by the PAN representative -- it's a Florda-style electoral mess that's currently playing out in the Mexican courts. You constantly see signs (in storefronts, apartment windows, and handbills on every spare piece of bare plywood) that say "No Al Pinche Fraude," which roughly translates to "No Damn Fraud."

Apropos of that sentiment, in the zocalo this morning the PRD held an event where Lucha Libre wrestlers put on a performance "Por La Lucha Democratica," putting on high-flying staged routines in a tiny, tiny ring while party activists sought petition signatures from the crowd and handed out literature. As wrestling it was awfully hokey, but as Kathy pointed out the fellows were brilliant tumblers and if you viewed it as acrobatics instead of a fight, it was a pleasant, fun thing to watch. The crowd was into it, and many obviously knew the individual wrestlers by name and engaged in various chants on their behalf at different points. A wrestler named "Marcello" (sp?) appeared to be the most popular among the young ladies.

Aftwerward we wandered over to the massive market a few blocks east of the zocalo, and walked around looking at the amazing foods, crafts, and sometimes hilarious brand-name knock-offs -- I especially laughed seeing the characters from the movie Cars made into piñatas. The food from the street vendors looked amazing, but we had such a big breakfast we put off eating until late afternoon, when we plan to head back over to get in on the street fare before they close up for the day (catering to workers, the street vendors often go away in the evenings).

We're going to spend more time in Mexico City on the end of the trip, but tomorrow take off for Xalapa in Veracruz where we plan to spend most of our time. No telling how often I'll check in to post, but Kathy promised somebody from work she'd check her email today, so I'm taking the opportunity of sitting in an Internet cafe to get in a little travel blogging.

For you Texans - the high today will be about 75 degrees Fahrenheit (the weather's similar in Xalapa), and last night it was cold enough to make me wish I'd brought a jacket. I'll be thinking of y'all with sympathy as you endure the 105 degree heat. ;-)

2 comments:

AlanBean said...

Are you traveling to Xalapa by bus? Have a great time.

Alan

Gritsforbreakfast said...

Yup, and it was a quite pleasant way to spend a few hours reading and watching the mountains go by. I plowed through most of a book a friend loaned me for the trip, Crossing California by Andy Langer, and quite appreciated the down time, actually. Mexican buses rock.