When the guy at the check-in counter saw me he didn’t say: “your passport please”. He said: “miss, go to sleep miss”. If only he knew what I’d done the night before he would take my backpack and put me straight on the stretchers. It’s a kind of miracle I got on the right plane and actually made it.
…driving the tube In Mexico. It feels as if I was in the Bronx, but somewhere in the 80’s – at least this is what I’ve seen in the movies. Shady creatures wrapped in puffy jackets and wool caps are staring at my shorts and sleeveless top truly amazed. How could I know, that Mexico can be sometimes cold? Half conscious after an EPIC goodbye to Playa del Carmen, I’m looking at them more fascinated than scared. Eyes wide open, slowly tilting my head to the side, trying to rehydrate all that’s been lost in a battle against mezcal with a mixture of salt-and-lemon water. I’m on my way to the Magic Room, where my next host is already guiding ayahuasca session.
I’m starting to think, that my life is pretty interesting.
CDMX – Ciudad de Mexico – the big capital city with well-developed public communication system: bus, metrobus and metro, which could definitely be called something like a “Market on Rails”. An underground maze of corridors surrounding Ciudad’s subway stations, and also, trains itself, are bursting with hundreds of vendors selling everything from chocolate, through headphones to short English courses and Santa’s hats. The air is sweet with churros, glazed popcorn and filled with their shouts:
“Cinco pesos, solo cinco pesos!”
(pic. Each metro station in CDMX has its own pictogram which makes it easier to remember, especially for foreigners visiting the city).
Right after the noon, the streets of CDMX start being covered by small food stalls. Shrines of yumminess show one after another and quickly get surrounded by swarms of lunching Mexicans. Quesadillas, tortillas, a variety of pastries – all consumed usually standing or sitting on the sides of buildings closeby. A veritable feast of melting cheese, aromatic chorizo and salsas. Very tasty, and very unhealthy.
What surprised me the most was the massive amount of Oaxaca cheese packed into every flour tortilla. Impressive 200 or even 300 grammes of stretching mass, make Sunday-pizza-sins look like something absolutely innocent.
Timing is everything
What’s more: Mexicans rather don’t use radiators, which means, that if you’re about to meet leaky windows on your way, when the temperature outside will drop to 10’C, even double pants and triple blanket won’t be enough.
Drink drank drunk
How about warming up a bit? In a restaurant, along with delicious food, you can indulge yourself with a variety of beer cocktails, another thing that blew my mind. Among brewed treats you can find:
Clamato – an essence made out of tomato juice and clam broth, add it to your beer along with chilli and other spices.
Michelada- beer, lime juice, and assorted sauces, spices, and peppers, served in a chilled, salt-rimmed glass
Gomichela – beer, lemon juice, miguelito chamoy, clamato, Worcestershire sauce, tabasco, gummy bears, soy sauce – sounds disgusting, right? 😀
But I tried it, still alive. Clamato is even actually tasty – but hangovers after pouring into yourself loads of spices, chilli and salt – that, is a torture.
Call me mezcal.
You think Mexico, you say tequila? Not exactly. Wandering through the streets of Coyoacan – a fashionable, hipstery place great for spending your Friday night – you won’t see it. But what you WILL see is mezcal – (a distilled alcoholic beverage made from any type of agave plant native to Mexico). Depends on what’s in the jar: thyme, juniper – sometimes even cheese and spices, that make it taste like…pizza. The secret is to blow some air on the top of your tongue right after consumption to get rid of the itchy alcohol feeling.
Yes: you blow on your tongue yourself, and it’s easier than it sounds.
City street walking
What drew my attention was that Mexicans are very emotional! Strolling down te alleys of Parco Mexico, one of my favourite spots in CDMX, I was blown away by numerous people sitting on the wooden benches hugging, crying and kissing. In my world, where everyone just runs to be somewhere on time, because of something, that would be unimaginable! Here: take your time, we can cuddle and then you’ll cry on my shoulder. Maybe it’s because of the latino “ma?ana”, or maybe, they understand the priorities in life better?
“Excuse me, is that normal or something?” – I asked the waiter.
“Oh yes” – he replied cheerfully – ” No need to worry. We have a lot of riots and crime, so that’s why”.
Oh well, thank you! Riots and crime, I’m cool as a cucumber now. And calm like a lily on the surface of a moth*****g lake!.
On the way back home I passed many more battle-trucks. And pretty impressive groups of policemen wearing black uniforms, heavy shoes, helmets and hiding behind tall shields. However, it could sound unbelievable – I felt safe. Hard to say if that was because of it all, or despite it, but I did.
Mexicans are lovely people with big and warm hearts. Usually not knowing a word in English, usually staring at you as if you were a living doll, that was magically brought to life and now is walking among them.
And despite I spent there a whole month – I feel like I know nothing. Mexico is an ocean of exquisite culture that will literally blow your mind. So nevertheless there are so many places I still haven’t been to, I already feel like coming back 😉