Mexico City + This Is The End

We are back! It’s very strange, but we are completely done with our 11-month adventure of expat life and travel. Zac and I are in our respective parents’ homes for the holiday season, drinking clean water and throwing toilet paper in the toilet. Yep, it’s a very different world here. But about Mexico City.

As most of you know, my sister (Jayme) and her husband (Jorge) live and work in Mexico City. They both love it immensely, and have been nagging me to visit for over a year. It was not unwanted nagging, and we finally got our chance to spend 10ish days with them on our “way” back to the States.

We spent a lot of time working on our computers, making food, eating food, and drinking beers.

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Banana-Oat Muffins, Hummus, Pan-Seared Salmon w/ Spicy Quinoa, Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato Pasta and Roasted Brussels Sprouts

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Fancy Negra Modelo Bottle, Cheese & Chicken Street Quesadilla, Bread of the Dead

On the first Saturday night they took us to downtown Mexico City (D.F.) and Jorge, the by-night tour guide, told us all about the history of the city, pointing out monuments, and places where you can see evidence of the city sinking. It’s pretty fascinating. He was a good guide, pointing out Benito Juarez monuments, then explaining who he was and why he matters. It was great!

Mexico City

The Angel of Independence

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String Quartet on the Street! (well…quintet?)

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Light Display

Display of Skulls & Altars: Day of the Dead

Display of Skulls & Altars: Day of the Dead

We spent a Sunday at Teotihuacan ruins. This place is a pretty cool set of pyramids not too far out of the city center. These ruins are actually pre-Aztec ruins, so not a lot of information is known about them.

Teotihuacan

Teotihuacan – Jorge, Zac, Jayme, Caitlin

Before the WATERBOTTLE Incident

Before the WATERBOTTLEPOCALYPSE Incident

The tallest pyramid is mostly a reconstruction, but it’s inaccurate. Apparently the architect decided there were supposed to be 5 levels instead of the original 4. Sounds like a cocky guy to me. Anyway, we were on, say, level 2 or 3 when I took this picture. Immediately afterwards I stood up with the group backpack and my 1-liter, completely full Nalgene water bottle fell out and bounced and rolled it’s way down the side of the pyramid. It actually hit a (drama queen) women in the leg who kind of made a big deal about it. I mean, I’m sure it hurt a lot though, but she ended up making it to the top of the pyramid anyway.

Teotihuacan

Teotihuacan

Jayme & Caitlin Teotihuacan

Jayme & Caitlin Teotihuacan

The next, mmm, Machaca de J&J.

Machaca Breakfast

Machaca Breakfast

Also, we got to do something super duper cool and visit Jorge at his office: GOOGLE!!

GOOGLE

View

View From Google (Grainy iPod photo – sorry!)

That's a Video-Conference Room

That’s a Video-Conference Room

Gigantic Google Maps

Gigantic Google Maps

During the week, Zac and I took a (VERY LONG) journey to Tepoztlan, a small puebla outside of the city. They have a couple of pyramids as well, so we took the 45-minute climb to see El Tepozteco, the ruins at the top of the mountain.

In Tepoztlan, on the way to Tepozteco

In Tepoztlan, on the way to Tepozteco

Tepoztlan

Tepoztlan

Stairs to Tepozteco

Stairs to Tepozteco

Tepozteca & View

Tepozteca & View

Man, so as we got to the top, we saw these strange possums together in a family. We were a little scared of them, but excited, thinking that this was a rare chance to see these four creatures. NOPE. There were like 20, and they would follow you around if you made any sort of rustling noise. Want your water from your backpack? Nope nope nope, we will follow you and try to jump inside the pack. We just tried to ignore them and stay away, but as we left, a man came up with a bag of dried pork rinds and started feeding them! Bad move, buddy. A quick Wikipedia search tells me they’re Coati, and they’re members of the raccoon family. Thanks Wiki!

I should really donate to Wikipedia.

Man feeding the Coati

Man feeding the Coati

For our last few days in Mexico, Jayme & Jorge had a 3-day holiday weekend, so we took the arduous drive to Oaxaca. (Arduous mostly for Jorge…thanks for driving guys!)

Oaxaca is a state in Mexico and a small, relatively conservative town. I’ve actually only ever met Mexicans from Mexico City or Oaxaca. The drive was about 6 hours, but we did get stuck in some awful road block at 5:00am because people were protesting something in the middle of the Interstate. Get it together, people, we’re just trying to be tourists and spend money in your country.

We ate some AWESOME Oaxacan cheese (do I talk about food too much? False, no such thing as talking about food too much), went to a balcony bar and watched some sort of wedding parade, visited the Monte Alban ruins, checked out a Convent-turned-Museum, and played games in our hotel!

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Convent Museum

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Cathedral – Oaxaca

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Monte Alban – Oaxaca

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Monte Alban Ruins – Oaxaca

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Liiiiiittle bitty lizard – Monte Alban, Oaxaca

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Loving the warm weather and sunshine at Monte Alban, Oaxaca

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Well, also loving the shade.

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Ruins – Monte Alban, Oaxaca

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View from the balcony bar – Oaxaca

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Wedding Parade

On the first day there, we actually came across a small display in the street that was aiming to bring attention to violence against women and femicide. We participated in solidarity by leaving our purple handprints on the sheet. (I wish I’d taken a picture of that.) Seems to represent some sort of commitment to keep the purple on your hand and not on someone else’s face. That’s what I’m going with. I loved it. And activism for women, especially in Machismo societies, is much needed. Peru, can you get on board with that one?

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Purple Hands for Peace

Purple Hands for Peace

And then we returned to Mexico City on Monday afternoon. Just in time to eat WAY TOO MUCH POPCORN at a fancy fancy movie theater. The Butler? Amazing. Go see it.

OH MY GOSH. I totally forget to tell you guys. CHILAQUILES. SO DELICIOUS. They sound (sorry) disgusting, but are in fact incredibly amazing. Fresh tortilla chips are smothered in sauce (red or green or both) and topped with a fried egg or shredded chicken, then served with cheese, fresh cream, and refried black beans. For realz, probably the best thing I ate in Mexico. Yes. I basically had nachos for breakfast, and I’m okay with that. Sorry I didn’t take a picture.

Then, the good bye trip to the airport. Oddly enough, my flight was originally for 7am and Zac’s was for 9:30am, but with numerous flight changes and updates, they ended up leaving just 4 minutes apart! 9:08 for Zac and 9:12 for me. Am I the only one that thinks that’s super interesting? Probably. Don’t answer that.

Bye bye!

Bye bye! – 7am at the airport.

SO, this is really it you guys! You probably won’t hear from us again for a while, unless we do something really awesome next year in San Diego. BUT. 2015. Japan. Nihon!

Thanks for following us around on yet another journey. And thanks for letting me communicate with you in one massive blog post instead of lots of individual emails and calls that would all say the same thing! If you feel like you miss me, (there’s a plug coming here) then you can check out my food meanderings over at Frugal Nutrition! It’s pretty cool, I swear.

Until next time friends.

Adios for now!

Adios for now!

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Categories: Mexico | 2 Comments

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2 thoughts on “Mexico City + This Is The End

  1. Paula Tulley

    Caitlin, thank you so much for sharing your adventure. I enjoyed reading all your posts and loved your pictures with the exception of the huge spider. My love to you both.

  2. aww sad that this is ending! Just added your food blog to my feedly though! :)

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