November 1, 2014
Dia de los Muertos was in full swing in DF as we took the metro downtown to look around the Zocalo (a large plaza), the Palacio Nacional, the main Cathedral of Mexico City and the Aztec ruins relatively recently discovered and still being excavated. Even the local bike taxis were decorated for the occasion.
The metros can be breathtakingly crowded, particularly on national holidays, but the trip was well worth it. There were ofrendas on the Zocalo as well as vendors, Aztec dancers and organ grinders.
The Palacio Nacional has breathtaking murals by Diego Rivera of a narrative scope that I’ve never seen before.
The cathedral is huge and decorated with the slightly unnerving combinations of Aztec and Christian iconography found everywhere we traveled.
After a quick lunch in a downtown diner, we also got our first taste of the antiquity of Mexico. Back in early 1978, during some construction on the city’s light system, workers discovered some old ruins. Closer investigation led to the discovery of one of the world’s great archaeological sites, right in the heart of Mexico city. Here we find the origins of such Dia de Los Muertos traditions such as the wall of skulls. There is a museum on the site as well with plenty of Aztec archaeological finds.