Dane Bakery, Guadalajara
We are in Guadalajara, which is the first city we've been in that seems like somewhere you can actually live. There are people out at night walking, street carts selling food and snacks and lots of awesome green space. More about Guadalajara below.
So A fancies himself much funnier than me, so here are some of his notes about Mexico so far:
1.Almost killed an iguana that was crossing the road. It appeared to be 3 feet long and with black stripes. Those stripes may be tire treads from prior crossings.
2. Spanish language MP3s are a great alternative to Mariachi music and religion radio. The "Michel Thomas" product includes 2 whipping boys as pedagogical devices. Also, no one uses the term penultimate, except for naming frisbee teams in PA and the over-educated.
4, After a long and personal exchange with a 19 y.o. auto mechanic, we decided to trade contact information. He suggest that I use his email address to locate him on Facebook. I told him that I did not use the service. He called me out on being a "hipster". I have never been more entertained and insulted.
5. WEP is a thing here. Unfortunately, promiscuous
6. Topes are Mexican speed bumps, except that they are simultaneously invisible and mountainous.
7. A hotel that looks like a self-storage business will advertise their hourly price. This makes price comparison difficult and haggling awkward. The neon red lighting should have been a dead giveaway.
8. Mexican gas prices reflect market price + retail premium + tax. The tax portion does not include road upkeep. This is my conjecture about why the roads quality is lacking and the toll prices are shocking. Also, only male toll operators skim and the switch from "dias" to "tardes" to "noches" will forever be a mystery to me.
9. We saw a dead dolphin rotting on the beach, it was gross and sad and smelled much like you'd imagine it to.
10. Our real goal of this trip is to get a capybara and and penguin and tie them together. It's going to be magical.
11. Mexico is where all the VW bugs went, you see them driving by all the time. A claims the other half went to eastern europe, this has yet to be seen.
12. All showers are attached to the same floor as the bathroom and there are no bath mats, they must not mind the floor being wet all the time.
13. We saw a man with a flame thrower on the side of the road.
14. Generally taco stands have been way better than sit down restaurants, despite being terrified of eating the salsa.
A longer update on Guadalajara: We decided to spend two nights in Guadalajara after spending a long day driving from Mazatlan. After around 7 hours of driving and probably around 50 (US) dollars in tolls, we make it to Guadalajara right at rush hour. It takes about an hour to drive through the city to our hotel (actually 1.5 since we had to stop because the car was steaming for the engine to cool). We get to the hotel, park the car and go out to dinner. Guadalajara has been the first place it actually feels safe to walk around. There are families and people walking around even at around 10pm.
We decided to stay 2 nights in Guadalajara because it's a big city and we really haven't done anything cultural in Mexico yet. We decided to go to the Museo de Regional Guadalajara. It's pretty close to where we are staying (the city center) and has a natural history of the world section, a pre-colonial era section, post-colonial and then all lots of christian themed art. It was a pretty nice museum that had an open air center. We then decided to head to the modern art museum. Turns out it was ~5 miles. Turns out we should probably be exercising more often when doing a long road trip in a car. Ouch. We walked 2 miles back to the subway to take it back to our neighborhood. Guadalajara is enough of a city to have a subway, which is pretty awesome. A read the wikipedia and it says it's the "silicon valley" of mexico, I guess there are a bunch of tech companies and stuff here.
We are trying to figure out where to go next. Mexico city is supposed to be awesome, but driving there is also supposed to be a pain, there are only certain days you can drive and need a permit. We may just skip it and head down the coast, not sure yet. Will check back soon with photos and such!