Friday, January 27, 2012

Visit Day 7: Piedra Herrada

For the last day of my mom's visit, we drove out to Piedra Herrada to see the Monarch butterfly sanctuary.  We had planned on getting McBreakfast, but it turned out that the it had been closed by the health department! Oh whoa to me!

Anyway, we got some takeout from a little bakery and were on our way. It was a beautiful drive, and after a few mishaps with the GPS, we arrived. We rented the caballitos (little horses) which was much better and faster than walking. There were millions of butterflies, and it was just as amazing as the last time I went. I'm even excited to go again with Autumn's dad and Lynn in a few weeks.

We hit horrible traffic on the way home and had to give up on a last day shopping excursion. We met up with Autumn and had a fantastic last dinner at Dulcinea.

 One positive outcome of the French sending an emperor to rule Mexico in the 1800's?

 Looks like Colville!

Entrance to the sanctuary

Chrissy is excited!

 Mom and Rich must feel right at home, but I think their horses are about twice the size of these little guys

I don't know about Ruth, but it's been about 20 years since I was on a horse

 Can you spot the butterflies?

 There's one!


 and more!

 Hibernating clusters


 Our guide decided to put a bunch of possibly dead butterflies on Chris's head, which was weird...

 Hola Sr. Mariposa Monarcha

 It really was amazing up there.

 Eek, and also a little creepy, like Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds"

They're watching you!

 Hasta luego little horse-ito!

 Cactus forests on the way home.

Back in Mexico City...
...and stuck in traffic!

Thank you all for coming! We had such a fun time with you. See you again next summer and maybe in India!!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Visit Day 6: Turibus in Mexico City

Still recovering from Monday and Tuesday's activities, everyone voted on another day of no walking, so we hit the Turibus in Mexico City. This was my third or fourth time on the Turibus, but it was still fun seeing all the main tourist sites of Mexico City again, including some new ones for me. 

Chris, Ruth and I went into Palacio de Bellas Artes, which I had never seen before. It was very weird and involved multiple tickets and us getting yelled at for not having a photo-taking sticker (that was a separate ticket). There were some famous murals that Diego Rivera had painted elsewhere, the original owner was not pleased, tore them down, and the government let him re-paint them here. Otherwise, it was much better on the outside than on the inside!

We got off in the zocalo and toured the National Cathedral, then headed to lunch at the Casa de las Sirenas. The food was incredible and the view was amazing. They even had a little old lady making tortillas by hand in the corner!

We finished our Turibus ride and met Autumn for dinner at La Tecla, a restaurant that one of my mom's friends recommended, and just happened to be a few blocks from our house! Then we spent another quiet evening at home, looking a pictures from the week and chatting.

 Welcome aboard!

 Ready to rock

 The major sights:
The Angel - "Ooh"
The Stock Exchange - "Ahh"
The "Little Horse" Tower - "Gwow!"
and Torre Latinoamericana - "Is that abandoned!?"

 Chris and Ruth with Michaelangelo's David in Roma

 That's about right

Some artist had put up these weird installations all over the old buildings throughout Centro Historico

 The National Cathedral

 Ready to get off now!

 Ruth using the holiest garbage can in Mexico

 Mmmm...Lunch as La Casa de las Sirenas

 Palacio de Bellas Artes

 Mural that Rockefeller had torn out because Diego wouldn't take out the Communists!

Murals that a downtown hotel tore out because they were scaring customers!

Strolling through Centro Historico

 The cute colonial streets

Monumento de la Revolucion

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Visit Day 5: Puebla

Everyone was very worn out from our past two days of hiking up pyramids and walking all over Mexico City, so we opted for the least intensive day trip, a drive through the mountains to Puebla followed by a Turibus tour of Puebla. No walking required!

We had a quick breakfast then were into the car for the day's adventure. The volcano was blowing up a little bit today, so we couldn't see much besides smoke on the way. Once we go to Puebla, it was beautiful and sunny as always! We timed is just right that we were able to grab cash, coffee and then hop on the bus. This was my second time on the Puebla Turibus, and it seemed like half the route was under construction which led to some very "creative" driving by the bus driver. After much backing up and U-turning, we arrived safely back at the zocalo and sat down for a delicious lunch of Mega Cemitas - the official sandwich of Puebla.

We toured a few churches, bought Talavera pottery in El Parián market, and then headed home. Traffic was horrible as usual, and we got in late. Autumn and I decided to go pick up pizzas from 50 Friends and we spent a relaxed evening at home.

 Welcome to Puebla

 Fun with coffee cups
Look! That one is from the cabin!

 Ready to roll

 The cute and colorful streets of Puebla

 If you look really close, you can see the smoking volcano

 A weird cave-church!

More churches of Puebla


 The Mega-Cemita!

Top to bottom:  Bread, avocado, cilantro, cheese, hot dogs, breaded cutlet, bread!

Hilarious cutouts by the bathrooms!




...and more gold!

Talavera shopping!
Ruth even got a certificate of authenticity at Galerias Armando!

 Que cute-o!

Smoky volcanoes at dusk