Monday, March 31, 2008

Teotihuacan





Mexico City

Inside the Museo de Arte Moderno
Inside the Museo de Arte Moderno


Museo Rufino Tamayo




Sunday, March 30, 2008

1982

Bought a new hoodie to replace "jacket #2 - missing in action". Bought one with 1982 on the front, and have decided that my new age here in Mexico is 26.

Excellent, I feel more refreshed already!

¿Tienes novio?

Have found it quite surprising that the 1st or 2nd question I get asked by anyone (guy, girl, man, woman) is if I have a boyfriend. Everone seems shocked when I say no. It's as if it's a crime (especially at my age) to be single.

"But why not?", "But you're pretty, I don't understand why not".

They may as well say "Are you retarded?"

Last day in Guadalajara





Decided to hit the streets nice and early to see as many galleries as I could before I left town (even though I'd only just decided that waking up early was for idiots).

Was so impressed by some of the buildings that the galleries were set up in, and saw some really great works that made me feel totally inspired. It's sad that this enormity of the galleries seems to be lacking so much in Sydney. It's great to see so many great galleries over here, and for a country that doesn't have a whole lot of money to throw around, the arts scene seems to be pretty well established and encouraged. Come on Sydney!!

Y Tu Mama Tambien




Befriended a group of youngsters from Guadalajara who invited me along on their camping trip. Sure, why not? I don't understand a word you're saying, but why not?

Drove south for about 5 hours to a place called Maruata. The trip down was an experience of it's own (I witnessed the most horrendous car accident I've ever seen and we were then searched thoroughly by military men laden with machine guns at the border between the 2 states of Jalisco and Michoacan).
Finally made it and the view was breathtaking. From the view from the top of the hill I began to imagine 4 days of lazing by the turquoise water, eating lots of fruit, campfires on empty baches, lots of reading and perhaps a few early nights, listening to the sounds of the night and the crackling of the fire.
Ha! We'd arrived during Santa Semana, the busiest time of year for Mexicans to hit the beach. The empty beach I'd imagined was covered in palm leaf roofs, with a tent city underneath, each tent virtually pitched on top of each other. Every posse had their own stezza, cranked to full boar til the wee hours of the morn, pumping out electro, Latin tunes and obnoxious beats. So...we drowned it all out with out own tunes.
Ended up spending 4 days drinking beer for beakfast , lunch and dinner, reading only a couple of pages, and trying to understand what the hell these lads were talking about. After a day or 2 when I finally understood that most of their converstaion was slang I was able to filter through and start making a bit more sense of it all. Everything anyone said started and ended with swearwords, so if I could just listen in betwen it all....bingo! By day 4 I was swearing like a true teenage boy from Guadalajara. Excellent! I'm sure that'll come in very handy when I leave Mexico and no one will understand a single word of what I'm saying.
Survived the long traffic filled highway back to town, said "adios" to the gang and returned to the backpacker world yet again.

Lucha libre...again

Couldn't help myself and had to go to Mexican wrestling again. Think that if I lived in Mexico I'd go on a weekly basis. I just love how comical the whole thing is. No agro, just good times and fabulously well choreographed dancing. This time round (in Guadalajara) the stadium was much smaller and the crowd was much more interactive. Folk were so distracted by the crowd cries that the wrestling became background entertainment at times. I was lucky to have someone intrpreting what the crowd was yelling, and besides the obligatory swearing (Puta Madre) they were also yelling at hotties to turn around, and if they did, they went wild. Then they'd pick out a baldie and have a go at him. It was all in good fun, but I decided early on that I wasn't going to leave my seat for the entire duration of the match, for fear of being heckled by hundreds of punters and not understanding a word.

So I sat and laughed at everyone else instead. I'm really going to miss this sport. Where else can you go to watch a couple of short, fat dudes in their 40s tossing each other around a ring, to then have one of them held down and have his head shaved. Pure entertainment I tells ya!

Tequila


As soon as I found out there was a place called Tequila I was on the first bus! Didn't take much convincing to get my new mates to come along too, so we all piled onto the bus and went to check out how they make this fabulous drink they call tequila. Well, the only way to really understand it all was to taste, and taste , and then taste some more. So...we did (purely for research though).
Didn't realise there were so many types. There's another world of tequila out there past our selection of 1 or 2 bottles in Oz. Wished I could buy 20 bottles, but with 'bag o' shit' so heavy, I can't even fit another postcard in. Guess I'll have to drink it all before I leave Mexico, or before I make my way down south to the land of Mezcal...

Guadalajara



Checked out of hotel where I had my own room with not one but 2 double beds and checked into a dorm room in a hostel to share a room with 7 other people (and pay more money) so I could talk again. Realised it'd been a couple of days.

Found a nice crew of people and talked my arse off! Nice release. Decided early on that I really like this town, especially sitting in one of the many plazas sipping on a margerita (or 3). Mmmmm...so tasty!


Found a cute little bar that night that was playing salsa music and folk spilled out into the courtyard busting their moves. So awesome to watch.

Note to self...must learn how to dance with coordination.

Soft boiled eggs

When they say soft boiled, that's excatly what they mean. Ordered eggs for breakfast in Gunajuato and got a mug full of liquid eggs. Don't look...just eat. Can't exactly stop eating eggs on this trip, it's my staple (that and cheese). Still haven't gone 24 hours without cheese, I'm working on it though.

Monday, March 17, 2008

View from top of Guanajuato




Trecked to the top of the hill to check out the view (god damn heart nearly gave out on the way). When I got there it was simply breathtaking, the view below hiding any poverty I'd walked amongst earlier that day with candy coloured roofs. Lots of people were crowding the viewing area, and as I looked over the edge I noticed a few corona umbrellas shading an empty balcony below. Ah ha! That would make the perfect setting for arvo bevvies! I wondered down the steps leading to this hidden oasis and sat watching the view for hours, corona beers and book in hand, never understanding why the crazy, crazy folk above didn't think to make the same move, but not wanting to encourage anyone else to share my space.
Another afternoon in paradise.

Museo de las Momias


Thought I'd try to understand a little more about the Mexican's views on death, but after visiting this museum of mummies, I'm not sure I'm any closer.
There's some crazy concoction of magic soil, a particular balance of naturally occurring chemicals, and levels of oxygen that serve to naturally mummify buried persons in this cemetary (sometimes within a few years).
Recently, as the cemetary fills up, those bodies that can't be financially sponsored to continue living in such high demand real estate are being exhumed and the "good specimens" put on display here in the museum.
I enetered the museum slightly in shock, but not being able to take my eyes of the bodies. I even resorted to taking a few tourist photos and laughing at the comical text that accompanied the bodies.
It wasn't until I reached "the smallest mummy in the world" that I started to feel slightly odd about the whole experience, put my camera away and walked along in silence...a semi-confused frown across my forehead.
Laughing at dead adults is one thing...but babies...come on!

Friday, March 14, 2008

this should really be my first entry

The straight faced guy at the USA Border Control who didn't crack a smile at anyone called me a "lone wolf" because I was travelling alone. Couldn't understand not travelling on a group tour.
Think I even got a smile out of him...

Let's fuck buses

Just found out that the verb coger (to take) means to fuck, here in Central America. Lucky I found out early on in my trip...before I started telling everyone how many buses and trains I've been fucking

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Jardin Botanico - San Miguel de Allende



I finally arrived in my plant paradise. Jardin Botanico in San Miguel de Allende. It's everything I ever wanted to see from Mexican wilderness, well...a good start anyway.

There'd been some great conservation efforts of the wetland, and the birds were actually great to watch (they normally do NOTHING for me). I saw the tiniest honeyeater darting all around...so I chased him!

The great thing about these cacti is that they're edible too (nopales). Packed with nutrients too apparently..my new best friend here methinks (especially as a vegetarian). A what? You want some cheese?

Mariposas



Still too shy to take photos of strangers, I settle for their backs (en sectreto). Only the Mexican women that day were blessed with butterflies gracing their bodies with a fluttering visit.

Lucky for us we didn't have to wak all the way to the bottom of the track, I doubt I'd be here today had we have had to climb the incline again. For some reason I never thought to slowly aclimatise to an altitude of 3500m. Lucky for me I was having troubles breathing already huh? Damn 38 hours of aircon in transit over here (cough cough).

These butterflies were floating just like leaves, and I was guessing that those already dead on the ground were the men, shagged to death by the chicas, never to make the journey north to Canada. Tough life!

Mexico City...side view (hee hee)


I went to what I thought was the top viewing platform of the tower and began to take photos through the grubby glass windows. The guy working in the cafe there kept giving me strange looks, then approached me and said "blah blah blah" in Spanish and pointing upstairs. I kept responding "si, si" because I'd already gone to the museum upstairs. We played this game for a few minutes, until he gently took me by the arm and led me into the elevator and pushed the button for a few flights up. Oh...there's more levels? I got out and it was an open air viewing platform...free from grubby glass. I continued with my tourist snaphappy inclinations and returned downstairs.
"Entiendo ahora" I giggled.
Big smiles all round.