Monday, March 24, 2008


Just a few souls hang out at a usually lively plaza by our neighborhood.

At first there is a sense of relief as hundreds of Chilangos leave the megalopolis for Semana Santa or Holy Week break. No traffic, no pushing and fighting to get a seat on the metro. Suddenly everything becomes tranquilo. But as the week goes on relief turns into a sense of eeriness. Streets that are usually elbow to elbow are abandoned and the 20-million strong capital city just feels strange. But before the eeriness gets bothersome, on Easter Sunday we start seeing some more faces appear. The first signs of life are exciting, "Hey, the corner store is open again!" Despite the crazy and chaotic vibe of Mexico City, it's the masses of residents who breathe life into this rich megalopolis we now call home.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Agua de Coco

TECOMATE,Guerrero--Just minutes after someone harvested some coconuts for us from a palm tree, one of our guides quickly took care of business. Here he shakes the coconuts to listen to the water inside, which tells him whether the coco is ripe. He then cut a little hole into the coco where the water comes out. The results? Delicious clear and almost carbonated coco-soda tasting water.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Beach Life--Mexico style

TECOMATE, Guerrero-- I've got to say that small towns in Guerrero have a lot of loose pigs and piglets running around. One time we had to hit the brakes in the car and wait until a family of pigs crossed the road. But the funniest moment had to be when the pig in the picture went for a swim later on the beach shore. Ah, it's good to be a pig in Tecomate.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Coke Bandits on the Loose

Photobucket SAN MARCOS, Guerrero-- I didn't even realize when I snapped this photo that an armed official was on board this Coca-Cola delivery truck. Apparently, many Coca-Cola delivery guys were being assaulted when they drove into some towns in the area. So from now on, private security accompanies drivers on every Coke stop.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Three-legged surprise

TECOMATE, Guerrero-- On our way to this town on Mexico's Costa Chica, which is home to most of the country's Afro-Mexican population, we saw Rigoberto. Rigoberto was walking on a long, unpaved road in the scorching sun carrying this iguana and a device used to snatch coconuts from palm trees.

We were in a minivan traveling with a group of migrants who we were writing about. They explained that iguana is considered a delicacy in this region, and so we stopped the minivan to talk to Rigoberto. A passenger in our group yelled out to him, "How much for the iguana?" Rigoberto smiled and said it wasn't for sale, pointing at it's missing leg. Another car pulled up next to us and also asked how much the iguana cost. But Rigoberto rejected that offer too. After more chit-chatting we offered him a ride to the town. And in the end, six men, one woman (me) and an iguana all rode off together.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Reward

ACAPULCO,Guerrero--Though we were here on assignment and couldn't frolic in the beach like the other vacationers in our hotel, it certainly made views like this more rewarding after a 10-hour work day.

I was also glad that Acapulco wasn't as repulsive to me as Cancun. Maybe it was because we spent most of our time outside the tourist zone, where there are neighborhoods in rough shape and humble suburbs. Spending too much time on the tourist strip can be like being in a bubble. It doesn't allow you to put the whole complexity of the area in perspective.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Mini Pants

EJIDO MODELO, Jalisco-- As we walked through the neighborhoods of this lively little town, I noticed most of the clotheslines were filled with children's clothes. These tiny pair of pants were hanging on a line on the street. The people of the town were all jokesters, always laughing and poking fun at people with a big smile.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Jeremy becomes the story

SAN MARCOS, Guerrero-- We traveled to this town near Guadalajara to meet and interview migrants who have worked in the Atlanta area. What we didn't expect was that the local television station Cable Costa wanted to air a story about us coming to town!

Jeremy's flawless interview in Spanish aired that night on the 8 o'clock news. The anchor didn't even attempt to pronounce Schwartz and instead my hubby was simply referred to as the American reporter.