Sunday, April 29, 2012

Mexico City: Bribing Cops, High Society and Coyoacan

Our first full day in the city, we had some business to take care of and hopped in the car. It wasn't 10 minutes, before we were stopped by a traffic cop. Foreign cars aren't allowed to drive between 5-11 a.m. every morning so, he explained, we had one legal option: to get our car impounded and pay a huge fine to get it out. Over and over he repeated that this was our only option until we suggested settling the matter on the spot (we had a 10 am appointment after all). He got 200 pesos, we got a "key" code in case we were stopped by another cop we could use it to say we had already paid our bribe of the day, and we were free to go.

Our business at the consulate was taken care of extremely well, and we were ready for some lunch. We strolled around in the vicinity, before coming upon an Emir Cafe (one of a local chain). Our insanely-deprived-of-hummus-selves were extremely happy, even though niether our hummus nor baba ganoush were fantastic. But, something is better than nothing, our coffees were excellent and Little N also approved of the meal!

Next, we headed into Polanco, one of the nicest areas of the city, to find some groceries for Passover. We did a drive by of the nice shops, got our goods, and got back in the car. Little N finally fell asleep, which prompted us to decide to continue our drive, so we headed south towards Coyoacan. We made the mistake of getting on the pereferico (ring road), totally missing our turn off, and circling our destination multiple times until we finally got it right!

We were extremely happy to be out of the car, and popped right in to the Leon Trotsky museum. We let Little N play on the grass before actually checking out the rest of the small museum, which included preserved rooms of his house, and various Soviet era memorabilia. While the museum was not on our original agenda, it was an interesting destination.

From there, we walked towards Frida Khalo's blue house. Obviously it is a huge tourist attraction, and it was packed! As a museum it was pretty disappointing with only a couple rooms with paintings, and mostly just the restored house. The visit was short and we were ready to find some lunch.

After finally eating at a small comida (set lunch menu) place and walking around this relatively quiet neighborhood, we were ready to get back to the apartment. This time we took smaller roads and navigated almost flawlessly back toward the Centro.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

In the News: Bosque Primavera

A break from our Mexico City trip recaps, to share this small piece of news. There's a huge fire going on in the Bosque Primavera, the English reporting seems quite a bit less intense than that going on in the local Spanish papers, but you can find the main points here:

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Mexico City: the Drive

The drive from Guadalajara to Mexico City is 6 hours on a pretty decent highway. Complicating the matter, was that we could not leave until mid-day, and had to make a 1 hour stop downtown before leaving town. All in all the drive down wasn't that bad. But, Little N took a nap in the morning before we left the house, and another one during that one hour stop, meaning that most of the drive he was awake.

on the road

toll plaza; it's not a cheap drive but the toll roads are worth every cent

When we did make stops, there was no shade to be found, and we didn't find any Pemex (gas stations) with a little rest area like last time. So the kiddo wanted to explore, we wanted to feed him and get going, and the situation didn't allow either of us to get what we wanted.

rest stop after a long stretch

happy to be out of the car seat

During our drive, we were stopped by a federal police, trying to "get" us on something, but all our paperwork was in order and he was pretty annoyed about that! The last hour and a half there was a lot of crying going on as the kiddo wanted out, while we were trying to maneuver into the city before dark.

not happy anymore

when you reach the forests of Toluca, you're almost there

traffic bad enough that there are vendors in the middle of the highway

We made it, of course, to our rental apartment and there were lots of adventures including more policemen and more traffic but also sightseeing and fun to come!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Daily Life: March 2012

We started off the month with a trip to San Miguel de Allende. (Here, here, and here).

We celebrated Purim with hamentashen; Little N dressed up as a king.

We had a family visit from O.

We visited the Zapopan historical center.

We went to the pool multiple times.

M completed a Cardio rotation.

We celebrated at a birthday party and hit the piñata.

We did some major spring cleaning and made M a new office in our former storage room.