Monday, April 30, 2007

Guanajuato Anniversary

Jeremy and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary this week. It's amazing how fast the time goes. So much has happened to us in just one year. We got married, packed up and left the country, started new jobs, moved into a new house....

We treated ourselves to a trip to Guanajuato. It was very appropriate considering that we went to Venice for our honeymoon. Guanajuato is gorgeous, and many of the narrow, winding cobblestone streets reminded me of Italy. We've gotten to explore many Mexican cities this past year -- so far Guanajuato is definitely in the top 3.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Mexico honors the legendary Pedro Infante

Along with the rest of the country, Mexico City honored the 50th anniversary of legendary actor and singer Pedro Infante's death. Infante died in a plane crash in Merida, Yucatan. The Infante famiy requested a special Mass on Sunday in Mexico City's downtown cathedral in his honor. More than 2,000 fans packed the church.

I caught the end of the Mass, where fans chanted as if he were alive in concert. Fans gathered outside the church sharing their own personal memories of the icon. One man whipped out a photo of Infante that he always carried with him.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Earthquake rocks the night

Friday the 13th in Mexico City got a little scarier at about 12:45 a.m. We had just crawled into bed about a half hour earlier when a tremor --that measured 6.2 on the Richter scale-- made the city tremble.

I was half asleep when I felt the matress and bed frame shake. Not knowing if I was still dreaming or not, my first thought was that Jeremy was moving the bed. I asked him, "What's happening?"

"An earthquake," he said as he jumped out of bed to inspect how things were looking outside. That woke me up.

Our bedroom doors kept making a clicking sound as they banged against the doorway. Luckily in our neighborhood the power stayed on and things returned to normal after a few minutes. But in other parts of the city, especially downtown, panic grew as people had flashbacks of the deadly 1985 earthquake that struck the megalopolis.

Guests at hotels ran to the streets in pajamas, some, like me, had never have experienced an earthquake before. The Mexico City daily EL UNIVERSAL reported people slept in the street, just in case.

What many people forget is that Mexico City was built over water. Back in the day, our neighborhood of Coyoacan, was considered a suburb on the outskirts of the city and has always been land, which makes us feel a little better. But the night's quake made me realize we are not completely in the clear.

We fell asleep listening to the local radio's extensive reports on the quake's effect on the city. People shared their stories-- a reporter spotted someone leave their apartment, wearing only a sheet. Another reporter touched a woman's arm after an interview and told listeners that she was still trembling. Somehow I could sleep better after listening to their stories. I was not alone.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Cruz Azul

We had blue fever when we went to check out the pro Mexican soccer league team Cruz Azul play against Veracruz this weekend. The intimate stadium allows every seat to be a good one. I still haven't picked a favorite team to root for, but getting to see the players in action will definitely help me choose. Check out the other stadium in the background--it's actually a bullfighting ring.

Die-hard fans somehow produce smoke during the game to keep the drama alive.

Cruz Azul wins 4-2, and the guys exchange jerseys. I wish I had a better zoom lens on this camera.

Thursday, April 5, 2007

City will finally sleep

It's Semana Santa, or Holy Week, here in the predominantly Catholic megalopolis. There's a mad rush to get out of the city, since these all are vacation days here (except for journalists, of course). But for at least a couple of days, there will be less traffic, less people on the metro, and some quiet.

I've never spent a Semana Santa here in Mexico City, but I did get a little taste of the calmness during Christmas. After we came back from our holidays, the megalopolis was still dead. It was awesome. It's the best time to be a tourist and the best time to do the errands across town that always get put off.