Thursday, November 15, 2007

Pozole

Some of the students in my class took me with them to La Pozoleria get pozole, a traditional Mexican soup. It was good, but honestly, it tasted like any other soup. The restaurant's hole-in-the-wall atmosphere was fun though.

The taxi ride to and from the restaurant was also fun. I had been too busy with work to get out and explore much of the area, so this was a chance to go a little beyond the area of my hotel and work location. The restaurant was located up a hill, not in a bad or scary neighborhood, but one that looked dirty and ugly (a mess of buildings packed in wherever they could fit).

After lunch we tried to hail a taxi. There were 5 of us, so we had to let several cabs pass us before one stopped that was large enough to fit all of us. As we waited there was a car creeping up the hill in front of the restaurant. The car was either breaking down or else didn't have enough horsepower to get up the hill at a speed of more than a couple of miles or hour. In either case it had its hazard lights blinking. There was obviously some problem.

As the rest of the traffic simply went around this car (it was a 4 lane road, 2 lanes in each direction and this car was driving in the "slow" lane), one shiny, new SUV stayed in the lane behind the car. The driver kept her hand on the horn as she followed the slow moving car. This went on for a solid minute.

There was no traffic whatsoever in the passing lane. The SUV could very easily have changed lanes and passed the slow moving car. Instead the driver sat in her car with a blank expression with her hand on the horn. My friends and I looked at each other and started laughing. One of the said to me, "Welcome to Mexico City!"

The taxi that picked us up was driven by a fat man. I sat in the front while my friends piled into the back. On the dash board in front of me sat a roll of toilet paper.

On the drive back to the office we drove through a flea market. I should call it a junk market because it was all junk: dirty clothes, broken toys and electronics missing buttons. There were all sorts of wild dogs roaming the street. At one point the taxi came closer to running over a dog than I've ever seen in my life. The dog ran up to the car and was an inch from getting hit.

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