Monday, October 15, 2012

Mexico City: Days 1-5

Man, where do I even start to cover my trip? It was simply amazing and I am so sad to be home where it is cold and rainy. Plus I am pretty sure work wants me to show up this week and do work things, which just seems impossible to fathom as I write this. So, here is my attempt to give even a GLIMPSE of my trip to Mexico City!

A little background story. Veronica, Olga, and I used to work together but as time went on we each moved onto new jobs. Then last year Olga, her husband Sebastian, and their daughter Sofia moved to Mexico City, which is where Sebastian is from. Veronica and I decided it was high time to visit them and see the city!

Sept 29th- Day 1
I leave ridiculously early to get to the airport, just in case the TTC decides to have some sort of malfunction. Luckily I get there easily and my friend Veronica is also semi-early so we check in. Unfortunately we forgot to check in BEFORE our flight and so we don't get seats together. Boo. The first leg of our flight is to Atlanta, where we enjoy some TGIFridays before our connecting flight to Mexico. I manage to sweet talk the gate into switching our seats so we can sit together AND we got exit row seating! Sweet legroom! We arrive in the evening to Mexico where we have to wait FOREVER to go through customs only to find out our friend Olga and her sister are stuck in traffic and they end up being an hour late to get us. However, they did roll in on a Avis golf cart which was hilarious and made the trip back to the car fast.

We get home late (11pm?) and quickly change so we can head out to the birthday party of her coworker at a bar. The people there soon find out we from Canada and this is our first time in Mexico so a bottle of tequila is promptly ordered and it was good! I had no idea there was such a thing as good tequila!
Olga and Myself

All in all it was a good first night and we had a lot of fun!
Olga's sister Anna, Veronica, Myself, and Olga
 Sept 30th- Day 2

We awaken from our tequila induced comas and decide to go for a walk through Olga's neighbourhood. She lives near a big TV station and it is a nice neighbourhood with cobblestone streets and a weekend market. The market is better on Saturdays so we only look at the goods (I started to get excited for shopping!). First though, we went for brunch at a fancy inn near their home. I had something with eggs, salsa, and plantains and it was DIVINE.
That night we go to a Brazillian restaurant, which is owned by Olga's sister's boyfriend. We get sooo stuffed with food, but when meat comes by on a giant stick it is hard to say no! We also went to Walmart for some food for Veronica and I and we picked up a cheap cell phone for us to use. You can only buy these cell phones if you are from Mexico, so they aren't really accessible for tourists. It was so useful to have!

Oct 1- Day 3

Monday is here so it is time for Olga and Sebastian to work and therefore Veronica and I strike out on our own for the historical centre downtown. We take a cab, as we will most days because Olga's house isn't near the subway and the subway is hot and crowded. However, it can sometimes be better to take it because traffic is INSANE in Mexico City and it can take a long time to drive anywhere. It is cool that morning, but that was the last time I had to wear a coat on this trip!

Mexico city just celebrated their independence day, hence the decorations. Most sights are closed on Mondays but we did go to the Cathedral, which was beautiful!

Since everywhere else was closed, we took a tour bus around the city to see the sights and that is when the sun finally came out. Poor Veronica burnt her arms!

Veronica and I then got some sushi downtown before heading back to Olga's to hang out with everyone after work. Unfortunately I got a splitting headache and I spent the whole evening in bed. Apparently that can happen with the high altitude of Mexico City, mixed with the pollution too!

Oct 2- Day 4

I woke up feeling much better! Veronica and I had planned to go to the Anthropology Museum this day but it was looking to be a beautiful day so we changed our plans and headed to Chapultepec Park instead! This is park is HUGE and absolutely beautiful. It sits on 2000 acres, and it more than double the size of Central Park, if you need a reference.

First we went to buy some juice at the end of Olga's street.

Mexico loves fresh squeezed juices and I have to agree with them! You can get them everywhere and there are no additives- just fruit thrown in a blender!

Then we took a cab to the free zoo in the park. It was very quiet there, which we later found out was unusual for the zoo. But the animals were active and we saw lots of familiar and unfamiliar species- including pandas, which I had never seen in person before.

After the zoo, we walked through the park to Chapultepec Castle, which houses the National History Museum. The museum was pretty neat, especially the period rooms, but the castle itself was beautiful. It sits on a huge hill and was a beautiful mix of old and modern. It had lovely grounds too, and we enjoyed just walking around and enjoying the beauty of it.

When we had seen all there was to see of the castle, we took a long walk through the park and into a nice area of town called Condesa, where we grabbed some mexican food before taking a cab home. Poor Veronica is allergic to wheat and we had a heck of a time trying to find out if what she wanted had wheat in it. Very few people in Mexico City seemed to speak any English and both of our Spanish is extremely limited. Thankfully we found out the word for wheat and Veronica did not get sick! hurrah!

Oct 3- Day 5

Another beautiful day dawns, so Veronica and I decide to stop waiting for a rainy day and head to the Anthropology museum, which we had heard was the world's best! It did not disappoint! There were all sorts of rooms organized by geographical area and time period and most, if not all of them, also had an outdoor portion.

Inside we saw a lot of amazing artifacts, including the Stone of the Sun (the Aztec Calendar). Not to be confused with the Mayan calendar, which says we are all going to die this winter.

We took the subway to and from the museum this day. It is so hot in there!! But they have special cars for women and children (not always enforced, unfortunately) which tended to be less busy.

Well that is all I have for days 1-5! I wish I could upload more photos but blogger takes FOREVER. I will be back tomorrow with more!!


  1. It is so weird to hear you say that you have never seen a panda in person before. But I guess I take for granted that I live near Washington, D.C. and the zoo there has had pandas for as long as I can remember. Id love to go to Mexico some time but I think I may be too worried about all the bad press you hear about traveling there.

    1. I think the Toronto Zoo is getting Pandas this year so hopefully I will see them again soon! Our zoo doesn't have pandas as a permanent display

      Mexico City was actually quite safe! A lot of the drug crime is up by the border or down in the southern end of the country. Mexico City deals with more of the regular large city crime (with a population of almost 35 million it isnt surprising!). We stuck to areas we knew were safe and we never had an issue. They have been cracking down a lot on crime there!


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