Monday, November 10, 2014

November 3, 2014

I started off the day at an American Immersion school that had a librarian from New Zealand. There seems to be a community of English speaking expatriates that travel around the world teaching at international schools. This particular one gave us a heads up that there might be a large protest downtown. The 43 disappeared students continue to dominate the thoughts of Mexican citizens. No surprise. I remember the national turmoil in this country when 4 college students were killed at Kent State in Ohio. Having been surprised by protests in Chile on my last tour I was anxious to avoid getting caught in another one. Our plans to go to Teotihuacan on Wednesday seem like good ones. Today we are headed for Xochimilco.

Xochimilco like Coyoacan, was formerly an independent city, but has since been absorbed into Mexico City. With over 250 kilometers of canals it is a popular tourist destination and we went to some pretty extreme lengths to get there so that we could ride the local boats piloted by a kind of Mexican Gondalier. There was a particular island that appealed to our sense of the macabre: La isla de las Munecas. (Seriously, check it out. You couldn’t make this stuff up.)

As soon as I was done with the school, Pablo and I hied ourselves home and we jumped on the metro
to catch the bus to Xochimilco (pronounced So-chee –milko), where we ended up taking another bus and then a cab to find the particular line of barcos that would take us on the precise tour that we were interested in. They were closed.

Not to worry said our cabby.
He knew of a barcodero that could give us exactly the tour we wanted.

For some reason we had to meet him in the courtyard of a church.

By the time we got to the wharf
dusk was setting in and our tour of the scenic canals of Xochimilco was marked by very little light in which to see. Still if you could enjoy the romance of it all,
it was a pleasant evening and even though we didn’t have time to go all the way to La Isla de las Munecas, there was a replica that we could kind of see at night.

It was a bizarre and somewhat unsatisfying day. But you have to have a few losers in there among the winners. We got home late. Ate dinner and hit the sack.

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