The Hero of Nacozari

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 In 1907 a young Mexican Train Engineer saw a train loaded with Dynamite sitting next to a storage house filled with dynamite catch on fire from sparks of a passing locomotive. He jumped in the cab of the train, gave it full throttle and roared out of town, just as he got clear of the main part of town the Dynamite exploded, 13 people including the engineer died in the blast but the rest of the town was saved thanks to the bravery of Jesus Garcia Corona.

 My wife was teaching English in The Hero of Nacozari High School in Apizaco, Tlaxcala and the Director asked her to prepare a  Commemorative Speech about the Hero of Nacozari in the following month for the 90th Anniversary of his death.  We couldnt find very much information in Apizaco so we decided to take a trip to Nacozari, Sonora where the copper mines were.

Upon arriving there the Mayor, the local historian and museum curater and many other people were most helpful in supplying us with an abundance of information.

 Jesus Garcia was 23 years old and engaged to be married. He was so well liked that the mining company rewarded him with a trip to the Worlds Fair in Saint Louis, Missouri.

 The morning of November 7th, 1907 as Jesus went to work, his engine was sitting in the freight yard loaded with 10,000 lbs. of dynamite and gun powder sitting next to a Storage house filled with dynamite, Waiting to be delivered to the copper mines. He heard shouts of “Fire..it’s gonna blow”and without hesitation he jumped into the cab of the engine and gave it full throttle to get out of the town.the train exploded and eyewitnesses sait it rained gravel and metal fragments for several minutes. The only thing they found of Jesus was one of his boots.. which is interred at his gravesite in downtown Nacozari.

Every November 7th the railroad workers of Mexico have parades in his honor.

To see more photos of the town and the site of the explosion click on this link….

Popocatepetl… The Smoking Mountain

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Mount Popo has been acting up in the last Month, although today there was just a wisp of vapor coming out of the crater. I hear that a dome of lava has formed inside the crater that just has a small crack in it through which gas, water vapor and ash comes out. That is dangerous, pressure could build up and it could blow big time.

last month it was very dramatic when fire and incandescent rocks flew out of the crater.

Natives in towns near the crater affectionately call the Volcano,  “Don Gregorio”. The Army has bases around nearby towns to evacuate them in case of a large eruption.

to see more photos go to this link….

 
To see up to the minute Volcanic monitors go to this link…..

On the 8th Day…..

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God created chiles…..  I have a theory that Mexicans are happy and cheerful because when your body feels the pain of Capsicum, (the ingredient that makes chiles hot) it starts producing endorphins to combat the pain , which then brings about a feeling of euphoria.

Columbus brought back a few chiles and seeds from the Caribean but Cortes brought back a greater variety. Ninety per cent of the Worlds chiles started in Mexico. Upon reacing the Old World they were an instant success, Hybridization started immediately, Hungarian Paprika, Curry from India, Tabasco Sauce from Louisiana, Bell Peppers in the USA, and many Chinese and Asian dishes have a link to Mexicos Past.

During the Mexican – American War a young soldier from Louisiana stuffed a handful of red chiles in his pocket and took them home with him. This was the beginning of McIlhennys Tabasco Sauce Company a must have ingredient of Bloody Marys.

On the Average a Mexican will consume 15 pounds of fresh chiles and two pounds of dry chiles each year.

 My favorite Chile is the Chipotle, which in Nahuatl Indian language means “smoked chile”, a Chipotle is a Jalapeño that has been smoked and dried..

Poblano Chiles, which look like an elongated Bell Pepper, are used for the famous Pueblan Dish “Chiles en Nogada”or Stuffed chiles with Walnut cream sauce.   The Chile is roasted over open flames till its charred, then all the skin, seeds and veins are removed to make it mild. It is then stuffed with meats, pears apples, nuts, raisins and other fruits. then covered with walnut cream, pomegranate seeds and parsley leaves so it will have the colors of the flag. It was first prepared by Nuns in Puebla to celebrate a visit from the Emperor Iturbide.

When a Poblano chile is dried it becomes an Ancho Chile.

Chiles are rich in vitamin C, A & E and the lesser known vitamin P. It contains properties that help your skin, helps your heart and prevents many health problems. Chiles from the tropics are more pungent than from other places. Mexico produces 500 thousand tons of fresh chiles and 60 thousand tons of dry chiles annualy. So for a healthier happier life…Eat Chile Sauces.

Biologists say that there is one undeniable benefit  that Chiles offer, a benefit that increases fitness of those who eat chiles on a regular basis and consume chile powder, sauces and fresh pods and that is chiles reduce the voracity of microbes hiding in the food we eat and limit their capacity to poison us. So Bon Apetit !!!

heres my recipe for  VIVA ZAPATA SAUCE

10 jalapeños….   1 clove of garlic

1 small onion…. salt to taste…. juice of 3 limes..

blend everything at high speed except the lime juice.    then add lime juice and mix by hand… salt to taste if you like it milder deseed the jalapeños.

To see more photos go to this link…

and read this articleñ

2011 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

 

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Syndey Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 34,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 13 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Why Fred Waring should have a statue in Mexico

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 In case you don’t know who Fred Waring was, he was a famous band director back in the early 40’s who had a band called Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians. One of his Hit Songs was “You have to be a Football Hero”.

Band leader Fred Waring

   Now as far as I know Mr. Waring never came to Mexico but his contributions as an inventor helped save thousands of Mexican housewives from the drudgery of this………..

Grinding…..

Grinding and blending by handand this……

A Colonial hand blender… And They should have a special day for Fred because he invented this……

and saved them thousands of hours of toil…..3 cheers for Fred Waring…. !!!Maybe someday he will have a statue put up for him in the Zona Rosa.

The Palace of Cortes and the Tourist School

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 About 60 years ago Tlaxcalan writer and historian Mr. Salazar Monroy decided to build a Tourist Hotel to promote Tourism in the town of Acuitlapilco located next to a lagoon on the outskirts of Tlaxcala.

He designed it with great flourishes of Prehispanic designs and tiled pictures depicting the history of the Tlaxcalan nation. Unfortunately local officials didnt agree with his ideas and created several roadblocks, stopping permits and finally sinking his plans. The Hotel went under and now years later it has been converted into a Tourist School.

And next door to the School we find the Palace of Cortes… Legend has it that Cortes and his mistress “Malinche” stayed here and would swim in the lagoon in the mornings.

 Most historians scoff at this story but there’s a plaque on the building placed there by a Governor Cisneros that says it once housed the image of the “Virgen of the Conquest”, an image that Hernan carried with him during his campaigns against the Aztecs.  The Image now rests in the San Franciscan Church in Puebla.

Whatever the case, the tiled pictures never lose their colorful luster and their history thanks to Mr. Salazar Monroy live on.

 

To see more of this famous building and site click on the following link…..

Lost Wax Silver Jewelry

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In the  town of Tlaxco, Tlaxcala We find the Silver workshop of Ms. Eva Martinez who has been making Colonial style jewelry replicas for the last 35 years. Ms. Martinez  goes  to museums and draws a copy of jewelry used in the Colonial period, then makes a wax sculpture of it in her workshop, covers it with clay with an opening, bakes it in her kiln, pours the melted wax out, (thus the lost wax concept), fills it with molten silver and Voila!! an exact replica.

to age the silver it is dipped in potasium sulfate.

 You can buy items of Colonial replicas at very reasonable prices and

take home a most unique gift that can’t be found anywhere else. Each piece is handcrafted with love and precision.

To see more of this workshop click on this link…..

The Best Things In Life….

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great choreography

 Quite often they really are free. Today we dropped by the Culture House in Puebla and saw a live performance of a Band called Bandula. And they were very good, great muisic, good costumes and a terrific performance, … price of admission FREE!!  This occurs so often here in Mexico, We find performers who love their country and are very patriotic, enough so they will perform free so working people and families can enjoy their music also.

Singing group “BANDULA”.

So we had a very enjoyable afternoon along with a lot of other families.

To see more photos of this event click on these links…

Mexican Bakeries

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the Sweet taste of Mexico

 

My wife & I lived in Georgia for awhile…I asked her..”What do you miss most of all from Mexico?”  She told me…”Pan Dulces” (sweet breads). And she is right , they are soooo tempting and appetizing.

 You can find bakeries all over Mexico, Big ones and small Mom & Pop bakeries that make the most exquisite breads. The Spanish brought wheat to Mexico and the art of baking and the French came along and polished it up.

My favorite are Bear Claws…….

Pan Dulces,  shortcake and Bear Claws with chocolate.

To see more Bakery photos check this link….

 
Hmmmmmmm…. pass the hot chocolate please.

The dog that will lead you through Hell

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The Florentine Codex of the XVIth Century says:  And the owner of the dead dog put a cloth collar on it and said… “Wait for me on the other side and help me to cross the nine rivers of the underworld”.

The xoloitzcuintli, the only dog of the aztecs was their companion in life as well as death. This canine came with the tribes across the Bering straits. It is hairless and weighs in at 18 to 25 pounds. It is on the verge of extinction as the ancient Aztecs considered them a great delicacy also and very few survived the gastronomical tastes of the Aztec Empire and the onslaught of Spanish Dogs that came in with the conquest.

Aztec Dogs... Xoloitzcuintli

 It was believed in precolombian times that if a woman didnt want to have more children she should feed the lastborn childs umbilical cord to a dog.

To see a fine group of these dogs go to the gardens of the Dorothy Olmedo Museum in Mexico City where they are raising them in an attempt to keep them from extinction.

Mexican caninesOlmeda Museum Mexico Cityplaque at the Dorothy Olmeda Museum in Mexico CityOlmeda Museum Mexico City

 

 

Josh makes a new flic

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filming the plague victims

So my grandson Joshua  has made a new film in his Cinematography class… it’s in spanish but you can probably follow the storyline… basically its sci fi and scientists meddling with nanobot technology have unleashed a plague on the world by accident, almost everyone’s dead with a few exceptions.

checking the script

 Here we see the Cinematography Professor, my son Mike in camo and Josh discussing the script. Josh and myself scouted out locations the week before looking for isolated places to film.

Later Josh received a Diploma of Special Recognition for his film from the Tlaxcala Cultural Institute.

Josh receives award.

to see the film go to this link…
 

Getting a Criminal Background Check

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I know…I haven’t been here for awhile. I’ve been in a tsunami of red tape. Amazingly enough the wonderful, technologically advanced USA has given me the most grief… You can have all the computers you want but if they’re ran by the Planet of the Apes you are going to have problems. And that’s what happened. I needed a Birth Certificate from my Home State of Georgia, so I checked the net and saw their website, followed instructions and sent off details of my mom’s maiden name, etc. & $25 bucks. So not wanting to befuddle their weak redneck brains by saying I live in Mexico I told them to mail it to my cousins house in San Antonio… It showed up a week later… this was in January, My Cuz FedXed it to me.. (another $25 bucks).. It got here I presented it to Mexican Authorities and they said…”But it has to have an Apostille”… “Whats that”.. Ïts a special seal that the Stae Department puts on Documents to show they’re genuine.”  Note: ( This is more Government Bullshit to bleed money from  its beleagured citizens) . So I call a friend in Atlanta… Can you take this down and ask for an Apostille?  “Yes”… I send it… A week later he calls… they say they cant accept it because the Signature on the Birth Certificate is rubber stamped not signed in ink.    So he goes to Vital Statistics to get one in ink.   They tell him No we cant do that… he talks to 3 different people and gets 3 different answers.  I call twice … now a month has passed .. finally someone at the main office says mail it to us.  I tell my friend.. just drop in an an envelope with a return envelope to your house.  “I hope they don’t throw it in the trash “he says.

Well its not worth a crap anyway so we have nothing to lose.

Ten Days later it shows up in TEXAS at my cousins…. but it’s now signed in ink … So I tell my cuz, ” send it to the Apostille office with 3 bucks and a return envelope and let us pray that something happens and God will intervene. “

Ten days later it shows up with the Apostille seal  so my cuz FedX’s it to me and it shows up in Mexico 4 days later….   Total time wasted by Dummies in Georgia .. 3 months… cost just over $100 bucks.   Burrocrats!!! lots of burros.

 

burro- crats .

 

So now I have to get a Federal Mexican Criminal backgroud check…. got to go to Mexico City to get it so I get up at 6:30 along with my wife and we catch a bus to the BIG TAMALE… get there at  9AM , catch a cab to the location and they tell me No we dont do those here you have to go to a different location about 20 blocks away. 

 

metro bus mexico city

 

 Finally after two bus rides we find the place and there are 250 people already in line waiting for the same thing. OK. so after about an hour someone  comes down the line checking papers and we go into the main building. Another line… 250 people in front of me 200 behind me. They wouldnt let my wife come in with me. after ten minutes two Federal Police with machine guns come down and said,” Is Robert Cox here?

The long arm of the law

  ”  Yeah thats me, I’m wondering whats going on. They said “come with us”. we start outside and they said, “Wait here”. At the front of the line, My wife was stading at the front door, She said , “I told them it wasnt right to make a person of your age to wait so long, so they’re putting you at the front.”  The Fuzz, said “OK., You can go in, twenty at a time… we went in, in 5 minutes they gave me my Background check paper and said, we’ll check you out later and if we find something wrong we’ll arrest you in a day or two.”    OK, Thanks boys and may God protect you from Drug Cartels supported by American Drug Addicts”

yahoo !!

ERIN GO BRAGH….. wear some green lads

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ERIN GO BRAGH

March 17th is right around the corner and yes we’ll be celebrating in Mexico…. What?  You think there’s no Irishmen here… well not many but there will be a commemoration in Mexico City and Puebla as there are monuments there honoring the “Saint Patricks Battallion”.

MONUMENT IN PUEBLA

MONUMENT IN MEXICO CITY

 

Who were they??

About 200 Irishmen who had immigrated to the U.S. in hopes of finding the    “American Dream” were recruited into the American Army and sent to Mexico to fight against the Mexicans in the Mexican American War. After getting to Mexico they realized they were fighting against people who were more like themselves and changed sides. At the end of the campaign as Chapultepec Castle fell they were hanged as traitors.

check out this ballad….

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s4BGrNrkbMU 

Have a Happy Saint Patricks Day…….   Kiss me I’m Irish !!!

An Irish Toast

 

Irish Proverb

An Irish Curse

Silver Jewelry, Cheese and Cocktails

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Manso Maguey (Agave Plant)

 We recently visited the town of Tlaxco, Tlaxcala… a very quiet and pleasant town in the pine forest area of Tlaxcala,  Where we visited the Mayors Office, the Silver workshops of Eva Martinez , a cheese making factory and then had dinner and a tour at a pulque hacienda.

buying cheese at factory store

  We met the new Tourist Director at the Mayors office and he surprised us by making a cocktail that he invented called a “Rabbit”made from Tequila, Eggnog and Pepsi.  Then he told us of a few legends of the town.

 Afterward we went to the silver workshop of Eva Martinez where she makes reproductions of Colonial jewelry using the “Lost wax process”, several of the ladies in the tour group bought earrings.

Colonial Jewelry reproductions

 After dinner in the Hacienda  we took a tour of the Agave plantation to see how cactus juice is extracted and fermented.  Everyone had a great time. Wish you could’ve been there. !!!

more photos of the tour….

THE JIMMY BUFFET SYNDROME

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Wasting away in Margaritaville…. lots of people get this idea in their head that they can just take off and  go to Mexico and sit it out on the beach  as long as they like… after about three weeks brutal reality shows up and the money runs out. then it’s back to the same old monotonous grind back home.

 

it was my own damned fault….It takes a special breed of cat to just up and change cultures, customs and habits… its romantic to say I’ll go to some Carribean beach and stay there forever or till I get over a broken heart. Aaaah !! to saddle up your bronco and ride across the Rio Grande with a posse hot on your trail.  Like Jimmy Hendrix said… “I’m goin way down South …Way down south to Mexico way…where I can be free.” party time

But if you use your head and play your cards right…you may end up someplace where the parties never cease.

Remember this…“Workers never hustle…. and Hustlers never work”

  See you in Margaritaville pal….!!!!

Read the rest of this entry

Immigration Day in Mexico

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 I know… I disappeared for awhile. Ï ve been cutting through red tape… getting

The American Table

my immigration papers in order. The Mexican Immigration Dept, threw a party as they do every year for migrants and 22 nations participated. My wife and I along with 4 other Americans, Stuart and Gretchen, Brandon and April had the American representation. Each Nation brought something typical from their countries. We had Muffins and umpkin Pie and Gretchen brought Deviled eggs.

Hopefully this will be my last year as a Migrant and I will become a Citizen by the end of this year.

Check out the party photos…..

2010 in review

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The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads Wow.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

About 3 million people visit the Taj Mahal every year. This blog was viewed about 59,000 times in 2010. If it were the Taj Mahal, it would take about 7 days for that many people to see it.

In 2010, there were 33 new posts, growing the total archive of this blog to 87 posts. There were 198 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 73mb. That’s about 4 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was March 5th with 541 views. The most popular post that day was crater1.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were vivaveracruz.com, mail.yahoo.com, rockypointtalk.net, mexicobob.blogspot.com, and stumbleupon.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for la llorona, pico de orizaba, imagenes de la llorona, llorona, and yucatan crater.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

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HUMOR…THAT’S NOT FUNNY!! June 2010
1 comment

The Christmas Eve Plant

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Raquel with Poinsettas

 Christmas is a short time away so we took a trip to Atlixco, Puebla and visited several greenhouses…there are more than 300 in the area.

 Noche Buena flowers are in full bloom now, better known in the States as “Poinsettas”. American Ambassador  Joel Poinsett of South Carolina carried them back to the States with him and Named them after himself…Vain lad… he was declared personna non grata in Mexico,  not for renaming the flower but for meddling in Mexican politics. He offered ten million dollars for Texas but was turned down…Mexico wound up loosing it anyway…they should’ve took the ten Million.

So we went to several greenhouses and  were amazed at the variety of flowers on hand. Atlixco is at a lower altitude than Tlaxcala where we live, so the temperature is always about ten degrees warmer there.

Bob with "Noche Buena" plant..cost $2 dollars.

I’m not good at identifying flowers…maybe you can name them…

Some plants have price tags… the price is in Pesos…A peso is worth 12 cents…figure it out…

Check out this link to see more of the flowers of Atlixco……

Charros… Mexican Cowboys

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Mama don’t let your sons grow up to be cowboys…. Thats what Willie Nelson sings.  But if you go to a Charreada, a Mexican Style Rodeo you will get to see some fine horsemanship.

Charros...Mexican Cowboys

Herna Cortez  entered Mexico in 1519 with 400 soldiers and 16 horses. When the Aztecs saw them they thought they were one being, like Centaurs, half man half horse. A fearsome sight for someone who had  never seen a horse before. At first only Tlaxcalans were allowed to ride horses, because of their alliance with the Spaniards. But very soon the Indigenous people of Mexico were riding , training and handling horses with great skill.

The Charras, Mexican Cowgirls also put on a very colorful performance…

Mexican Cowgirls

And while riding sidesaddle at that.

Charra..Mexican cowgirl

Working the cattle ranches in Mexico during the XVIth Century they developed the techniques that were shared with American Cowboys over a hundred years later. 

rope twirling

Charreadas are the true Mexican Sport, The Tlaxcalan Fair opened last week and will have several days of Charreadas to see more photos of this event go to the following link….

mammograms in the park

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 So I woke up this morning and heard a big hullabaloo in the park and went over to investigate. The City had set up bioscan truck and were giving free mammograms.

free mammograms

sign

 There was quite a large crowd and seeing as how the Doctors were having a hard time I offered my services with my own mammogram machine… but they didnt appreciate it and even threatened to call the gendarmes….

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freebie

Some people are just sooooooo unappreciative…

hmmmm…. maybe I’ll use this at the Halloween costume party.

going to the MO

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Back last Spring Steve (my blog partner), his wife Pat and myself went to visit some American expats and fellow bloggers in Xico, Veracruz. Steve by the way is quite ill and if you know him drop him a line.

Anyway,  as it turned out there were no hotel rooms available in Xico so we went towards Coatepec and our friend John told us he knew someone who owned a Motel not too far away and we could probably find rooms there.

Now if you know Mexico you’ll know that the word Motel  has sinister connotations, the majority of them arent meant for overnight stays but are basically used for romantic rendevous or unfaithful “trysts”.

motel

But any port in a storm right? So we went and they had rooms available… during the night I felt as if someone were staring at me so I cut on the light and behold!!! It was me…there was a mirror over the bed.

Even more unusual there was a HUGE Istitution size roll of toilet paper in a dispenser right beside the bed….hmmmm! Should I take a crap in the bed????

I discussed this with Steve the next day….  Amazing, he said, “Theres no Toilet Paper in the bathrooms in Mexico but there’s paper besides the beds”.

And to top it off, when we left the next morning to go find a place to eat breakfast, a guy selling tortillas passed by and stared at us… I could just see what was going through his mind…”What are these three Senior Citizens doing coming out of this motel together??? Perverts!!!!

Just another adventure in Mejico Majico….!!!!

La Laguna Hacienda

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 We’re planning an excursion to an old hacienda that raises fighting bulls next October. It was in it’s prime in the late 1800’s with the advent of the railroad. Now it has been restored and it’s one of the best renovated haciendas in the state of Tlaxcala.

old hacienda

Mr. Rojas...Hacienda owner

 Here are some photos of our last visit with a group……

A great place to have a wedding or a special party…. they treated us all like family.

AN OLD HACIENDA

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 While out wandering around the countryside, we went to a town known for its dairy farms looking for cream and cheese. The owner of the dairy store told us there was an old hacienda about a mile away that had been recently renovated so we went to check it out. And he was right, it has been restored to its former glory and is now used for parties, wedding receptions and occasionaly they rent out rooms for overnight visitors. Its really a beautiful place and reminiscent of times that make you think of Zorro.

The dairy store also had flavored wines and canned flavored

pulque (cactus juice).

Hacienda Garden

canned pulquecream of capuchino licor

To see more of the Hacienda go to this link….

Free Concert

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Argentine pianist Raul Di Blasio gave a performance at the Convention Center in Tlaxcala  on August 10th,It was a free Concert sponsored by Social Security in honor of their 50th Anniversary in Mexico. About 1800 people showed up and everyone seemed to enjoy it. There was a lot of Audience participation and Mr. Di Blasio gave a brilliant performance.

Raul Di Blasio

Douglas from New York on keyboards

 To see more pictures and a video go here…

and here…..

TIZATLAN…. A VILLAGE OF SURPRISES

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Xicohtencatl the younger

 Just a couple of kilometers from Tlaxcala is the village of Tizatlan. 1n the  late 1400’s to early 1500’s this was the Military Headquarters of the Tlaxcalan Army. They had a military training School there (sort of a PreColombian West Point). It was also the location of Senator Xicohtencatls Castle. Archeologists began excavating the ruins in 1927.

St. Stevens Church

 A visit to the Village will thrill you with an Archeological zone, an early Colonial Church & Open Chapel with 500 year old murals, the Church was built with stones taken from the old prehispanic castle. And around the area you will now find many woodcarving craftsmen, they carve many things but their specialty is walking canes.

open chapel murals

check out more photos here….

 

Culture House Revolution Photos

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 The Casa Cultura in Tlaxcala has a photo exhibit featiring Revolution & post Revolution photos. Its nice to take a peek at the past once in awhile.

Gen. Obregon, Panch Villa & Black Jack Pershing

 For instance here’s Obregon, Villa & Pershing, all on a friendly basis at the time…later on Pershing would chase Villa all over Mexico and never catch him. Sort of like chasing Osama Bin Laden these days.

Military Intelligence is sort of a contradictory term.

To see the Photo exhibit go to this link.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2072463&id=1162394476&l=098af9e656

The Revolution (Part #2)

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 Once the initial volley was over Porfirio Diaz saw he no longer had control & took a steamer to Europe. There were many factions fighting for control, Pancho Villa in the North, Zapata in the South , Carranza & Obregon wound up controlling most of Mexico.

Madero was assassinated by Huerta, Obregon turned against Carranza, Huerta became interim President while conspiring with U.S. Ambassador Henry Lane Wilson. Wilson & Huerta were both alcoholics, bottle brothers fraternity.  The Carranza Government crashed & He & his cohorts grabbed all the gold they could & hightailed it towards Veracruz. To no avail, Carranza was assassinated in Tlaxcalantongo, Puebla.

 Obregon became President and a restless peace followed.

Fransisco Madero

An interesting sidenote: Madero was the first head of state to fly in an airplane.  November 30th, 1911.It was a French plane called a Deperdussin.

Gen. Huerta

General Obregon

General Obregon lost his right arm in the Revolution. One of the great minds, he started educational reform , hired Vasconcelos as Secretary of Education, Mexican Muralism saw its greatest thrust during the 20’s. Obregon was assassinated in 1928 by a fanatical catholic who didnt like the way Catholics were treated. (Seperation of Church & State).

An interesting note: The worlds first aerial bombardment took place off the coast of Sinaloa when a warship of Obregons was being attacked by 2 warships of Huerta. A Mexican pilot in a biplane drove them off by bombing them.

Pancho Villa...easy rider

Here’s Pancho on an “Indian” motorcycle.

Pancho was assassinated

 Machine gunned in an ambush… Pancho was driving a Dodge.. No Japanese riceburners for him. His last words were… Dont let me go this way…tell them I said something…

To see more go to this link to read Historian Jim Tucks account of the Revolution..

http://www.mexconnect.com/articles/294-the-mexican-revolution-a-nation-in-flux-part-2

The Revolution (part 1)

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The Mexican Revolution’s Centenial is right around the corner, November the 18th to be exact and if you’re in Mexico you can expect plenty of fireworks and parties.

Many Americans confuse “Independence Day” (Sept. 16th) Of which the Bicentenial occurs this year with the revolution and the French Invasion, (cinco de Mayo). Anyway these are all seperate events. The Revolution  is easier to check up on….more parties, confetti throwing, fireworks & hangovers will hardly end before Revolution Day comes along . There were more reporters, newspapers , telegraphs, telephones & the film industry were in their infancy, so its easier to find facts.

 And the American Government meddled in the conflict also, several Americans joined up to fight in the Revolution also and were threatened with loss of American citizenship for doing so.

Here are some of the players in this program:

James Creelman...American Reporter

 James Creelman, an American Reporter inadvertantly created a spark to ignite the revolution. During an interview with Dictator Porfirio Diaz he asked, ” Do you plan on continuing in the Presidency?”  Diaz had been President for 30 years. “I’m getting old, ” he said, ” And I would welcome new parties”  This was just PR to calm talk in the USA. But influential Mexican intellectuals believed it to be true & formed “anti reelectionist parties which Diaz ruthlessly tried to eliminate.

The powder keg blew when the police attacked the home of Aquiles Serdan and killed several people  on November 18th, 1910. The next day fighting broke out all over the country.

Aquiles Serdan

 The home of the Serdan family , now a museum still has bullet holes in its facade. located in the Historic District of Puebla, Mexico.

the Serdan House (Revolution Museum)

SERDAN MUSEUM

 Pacho Villa was leading Revolutionaries in the North & Emiliano Zapata was in the South.

Pancho Villa

Zapata

At one point they teamed up and occupied Mexico City.

Villa & Zapata in Mexico City.

 To get an even more in depth insight as to what was happening, go to the following link and read Historian Jim Tucks account of the Revolution in “Mex Connect”.

http://www.mexconnect.com/articles/296

Stay tuned for part 2….

Margaritaville

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This is one of those not much happening days. So make a Margarita & relax.

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A visit to Xalapa & Santa Anas Hacienda

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 Last march the  Sardesons (genuine tourist) and I took a trip to Xalapa to check out expats hiding out in the jungle. Along the way we visited Xico & Coatepec and had a great time meeting people who havent been scared off by the negative press propaganda north of the border.

Xico waterfalls

 

Mr. & Mrs. Calypso

We had the honor of meeting fellow blogger Juan Calypso and his wife and several other expats around the area. Afterwards we took a tour of  “El Lencero” Hacienda Museum that had been the home of General Santa Ana…yes the infamous Santa Ana of the Alamo.  It is a fantastic hacienda that is now a state run museum that has been beautifully restored

Santa Anas Hacienda

To see more photos go to this link…..

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2071488&id=1162394476&l=22850f25c8  

 

HUMOR…THAT’S NOT FUNNY!!

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I told my wife a joke about Mexicans… Why do Mexicans always eat refried beans?  Because they can’t cook them right the first time.

” That’s not funny,” she said.    Well maybe not, its kind of corny. But I’ve got to a point where I can tell a joke in Spanish and they laugh. Or maybe they’re laughing at my accent??

 Humor is in the eye of the beholder… They say things that I don’t consider funny also. But sometimes they can be very funny.

I like British dry humor also. My wife doesnt connect at all with that, she doesnt like Mr. Bean. I use to be in Show Biz & there were always a bunch of Show girls from all parts of the world, I recall talking to some English girls one day & mentioned British Humor & one of them asked, “What British comedians did I watch”. I told her “Benny Hill”.” Bullshit”, she said, “You just like to watch the girls run around in their knickers”.  Well.. maybe so, I kind of enjoyed that also.

Benny Hill & entourage

 Poor Benny, he got canned over a sexual harrassment suit.

Our boy Benny

 Sometimes in Mexico you see things that aren’t suppose to be funny but are… for instance theres a couple of Magazines that are like the Super market scandal sheets you see in the States, but a lot more grafic, called ALARMA & ORALE!!! Orale roughly means “How About That”. One day I see an article on the front page of ALARMA that said, “Man has sex with chicken”…claims it was the best he’d ever had in his life!! with a picture of a guy that looked like he just came off the Jerry Springer Show.

And sometimes in the course of normal conversation people say funny things. One day I heard two news photographers arguing, one said you are such a low life proletarian. The other said, ” You are so common, you’re more common than animal crackers at Christmas time.”

If you’ve lived long enough in Mexico and watch kids break pinatas at christmas time you will understand that.

Some of my favorite Mexican comedians are:  Hector Suarez…

HECTOR SUAREZ AS TOMAS EL NEGRITO

This may be more inflamatory than Memin Pinguin…

Hector as, "No Hay...No Hay"

 Another very innovative comedian is Andres Bustamante, better known as Guiri-Guiri ..

Guiri-Guiri

And two other funny stand up comics are JO JO JORGE FALCON and  POLO POLO.  More for adult audiences.

JO JO JORGE FALCON

POLO POLO

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

So here is one of my first joke attempts……. in Spanish….

quien fue los tres peores PRESIDENTES en el mundo ??

“NIXON….. PERON…… Y ESTE CABRON…!!!

……………………………………………………………………….

TRANSLATION: WHO WERE THE 3 WORSE PRESIDENTS IN THE WORLD…

 NIXON…PERON…. AND THIS S.O.B.  !!

(My wife said.. Thats not  funny either !!!!)

Oaxaca… pronounced “Wa..Ha..Kah”

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THE TULE TREE

Oaxaca has its big celebration in July, called the “Guelaguetza”, lots of folklore dancing, colorful costumes and food. Theres many things that attract tourists to Oaxaca, its History, Benito Juarez was born there. He spoke no Spanish just the Zapoteca Indian language but was a brilliant kid and learned the language, went to law school and eventually became the President.

Other things that are attractive are the Archeological zones of Monte Alban & Mitla. Monte Alban was a great Zapotec ceremonial center that was established around 500B.C. , At its peak about a thousand years later it had a population of around 25000 people.

Monte Alban

Just a few miles away is theTule tree a mexican cypress tree that is over 2000 years old, it has a girth of  161 feet, stands 164 feet high, a veritable tree huggers delight.Besides that there are many crafts, natives dressed in native costumes and CHOCOLATE…nectar of the Gods.

CHOCOLATE

…Oh yes, let us not forget …MEZCAL… with or without the worm… Mexicans tell me it can cure any ailment. 

Go to this link to see more photos of Oaxaca…

  http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2069243&id=1162394476&l=5b7d60194f

Dream of a Sunday afternoon in Alameda Park

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Diego Rivera Mural

 If you visit Mexico City you don’t want to miss this mural by Diego Rivera that he painted in 1947. It measures 64.4 sq. meters, 4.17 meters high by 15.6 meters long, Originally it was in the vestibule of the Hotel Del Prado across the street from where the painting is now located. After the earthquake of 1985 the Hotel suffered irreparable damage and the painting was moved to its new location.

 It depicts the History of the Park as Diego recalled it in his childhood and mentions many historic references to it. We see Diego’s self portrait as a child strolling through the park holding the hand of a “Catrina” (Death) while dreaming of a perfect love, (Frida Kalo standing behind him.

a portion of the mural

 Also in the painting is Jose Marti, Father of Cuban Independence (tipping his hat), Jose Marti lived in Mexico for about a year, he was well known in the literary society as a poet. He wrote the words to the song, “Guantanamera”. He died in combat in Cuba in 1895. The “Catrina” (Death Figure) immortalized by the Painter Jose Posadas, standing to the right, wears a Boa of feathers shaped like a snake, prehispanic symbol of the plumed serpent, “Quetzalcoatl”. Standing behind Posadas is Ricardo Magon, Liberal Writer who was against the Dictator Porfirio Diaz. He was forced out of the Country but kept writing against the Tyranny of Diaz and was persecuted even in the U.S., he died in Prison in the States.

Gen. Winfield Scott

 General Scott, (known as “old fuss’n’ feathers”) during the Mexican American war, camped his troops in Alameda Park for almost two years.

Liberal Thinker, Ignacio Ramirez

One of the many figures in the mural, Diego added Ignacio Ramirez, who during a Conference at his Academy in 1836 had said “God does not Exist”, Diego painted this phrase into the mural, enraging the Catholic populace, a priest went to the hotel Del Prado and scratched the phrase out, Rivera came and repainted it in but later removed it because of the controversy.
There are more than a hundred historical figures in the mural, Diego loved color and many of his murals can be found in the National Palace, the Secretary of Public Education Offices & Bellas Artes.
One of my favorites is in Bellas Artes called, “Man in Charge of His Destiny”, The Murals there are a recreation of a mural he was commisioned to do in the Rockefeller Center in New York but were deemed too “left leaning” and destroyed.
check them out here:

Destiny mural

 

The CIA, John Foster Dulles, The United Fruit Company

  Exploitation of the fruit pickers in Central America, Rockefeller had the Mural destroyed, since he paid for it I guess he could do as he wished but Rivera recreated it in Mexico City.

Here’s the dream on a sunday afternoon in all its glory…..

A DREAM... PART 1

A DREAM...PART 2

A DREAM... PART 3

A DREAM...PART 4

Tarzan in Mexico

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 Yes Tarzan lived in Mexico… in Acapulco to be exact.  Johnny Weismuller loved Mexico enough that he bought a house overlooking Acapulco Bay and continued living there until he died at the age of 84.  Mr. Weismuller won many gold medals in the olympics. He was married to Mexican spitfire actress Lupe Velez who was also a lover of Diego Rivera, they were  married from 1933 till 1939. Hollywood moguls thought it would be better if Johnny was single as he was a very masculine star, so they offered Lupe ten grand if she would accept a divorce.   Johnny was married five times.  He bought the Flamingo Hotel and was in partnership with John Wayne. It was a hot spot to visit for movie stars and was frequented by Red Skelton, Richard Widmark, Liz Taylor, Gary Cooper, Errol Flynn and Lana Turner.

Johnny also made a number of movies in which he played “Jungle Jim”.

JUNGLE JIM

Tarzan downs a brew

 As you can see here, Tarzan wasnt such a prude that he didnt mind downing a beer.

 Johnny died at the age of 84 in Acapulco  on January 21st of 1984.  A recording of his Tarzan yell was played at the graveside. He was buried at Panteon Valle de Luz in Acapulco. The American Ambassador John Gavin attended the funeral.

the Tarzan yell

 

 Legend has it that once while  Johnny was   playing golf in Cuba, some of Fidels rebels came down out of the mountains intending to kidnap him  and when he saw them he let out with his famous Tarzan yell. The rebels were in awe of him & instead of kidnapping him they escorted him back safely to his hotel.

North Sierra Madre Eco Tour

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 What is it about waterfalls and gurgling mountain streams that relaxes a person ? Sort of like white sound when the TV goes off and its just a hiss that lulls you into lala land.

We went into the mountains & checked out waterfalls and had a picnic the other day…it sure was relaxing to get away from traffic street noise, that kind of stuff will stress you out.

The Tuliman Falls Ecological Area

It was  very peaceful and even as guides we also enjoyed it…communing with nature… I didn’t hug any trees but I still dug it !!

Some of the Falls

 Check this  video out…..

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmgqo3fJozw

Check out all the photos at this link:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2065530&id=1162394476&l=e223692970

ON TOUR–With Mexico Mystic

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Last year, we asked Mexico Mystice and his equally knowledge spouse, Rachel, to “show us the town,” and they served up Mexico City (DF) on a platter to us.  Here are some photos from the first two days “of a three day tour.”

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Silversard, AKA, Genuine Tourist Reporting in from Baraboo, WI, USA

 

CINCO DE MAYO–ALL PEUBLA

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Puebla celebrated the 148th Anniversary of the defeat of French Invaders at the Battle of Cinco de Mayo  with a two hour Parade. Many bands, floats and Military personell marched in it.

Cinco de Mayo parade...Puebla, Mexico

To see more of the parade go to this link….

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2064578&id=1162394476&l=4cabb3c4e8

MEXICO MYSTIC AND Claudia

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A Guest Editorial by Genuine Tourist, Stephen Sardeson . . . . published without solicitation

Although Bob Cox, AKA, Mexico Mystic, would not “put his family out there,” I would like to share with readers how Mexico has been enriched by Bob, a one time, long time, illegal alien, South of the Border gringo, who has finally decided to “go straight.”

While young but not too foolish, Bob married a young lady from Puebla who new “better English” than the girl he first dated in Mexico. I guess it was the right call because the young lady, named Raquel, went on to be an accomplished English teacher in the Mexico federal school system for over 30 yrs.

In between “leaping over tall buildings with a single bound,” she also “pushed out” for him two children, named Michael and Claudia. Of course, Michael and Claudia both become fluent in Spanish and English, like their parents, and went on to give Bob and Raquel a total of 4 grandchildren who currently all live in Puebla.

You can see photos of both Bob and Raquel at –

http://mexicomystic.wordpress.com/about/
Read the rest of this entry

MILITARY MUSEUM

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Emiliano Zapata

Zapatas sword

 The military museum in Puebla has expanded their exhibits in celebration of cinco de mayo. Very interesting pistols on display. A Sgt. Gerardo gave us a tour of the facility and everything was spit & shine correct.

They’re closed on mondays but operate the other 6 days.

tuesday to friday…from 10:00 AM to 10 PM.

Saturday from 10 AM till 1:00 PM.

Sunday… from  10 AM till 4:00 PM.

Entrance is free.

located at 4 Poniente no. 516,  Historic District

Puebla, Mexico

THE MILITARY MUSEUM

They have 6 exhibition rooms featuring;

*childhood of General Zaragoza

*Armament

*History of the Reform War

*Ministry of War

*The Battle of Cinco de Mayo

*The Evolution of the Mexican Flag

They also have a Library, an audio visual salon & a videoteca.

To see more go to this link:

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2063956&id=1162394476&l=3a33e9a342

FREE ENTERPRISE

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 Free enterprise… seems like Mexico has more of it than the U.S., try to start a shoestring operation in the U.S. and you will immediately be strangled by red tape, regulations & power mad bureaucrats.

 In Mexico I see people start businesses with practically nothing, pure entrepreneurs, for example Ive seen people hang a sign outside their house that reads… comida corrida (homecooked meals)… or they wait till evening and open up a street corner taco stand to supplement a meager income.

Can’t do that in the U.S., I know, I know, the “authorities” are protecting YOU.

I think I’m smart enough to protect myself and save money while I’m doing it. last night the baked banana man came down the street selling his goods…isn’t this better than having him ask for welfare? Or crawling through the desert to be an illegal alien? check hm out.

baked bananas

a baked plantain, (Macho Banana)

check the video..

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9z-h1fILfTU

APIZACO TOUR

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 Last Friday I had the honor of giving a tour of the Town I live in to the Director (Lic. Fernando Juarez)   of INTEC (A school of Computation), some Teachers & Students. It’s not often that anyone wants to tour Apizaco as it is more of an industrial city than a tourist area, but there are a few interesting things to see.

 Apizaco in Nahuatl language means place of thin water or literally “little creek”, it was started by railroad workers in 1866 who were building the first railroad line from Veracruz to Mexico City. At that time is was little more than a camp for the workers. So most of Apizacos history is based around the railroad. They built workshops and a roundhouse and little did they realize back then that it would become a thriving city.

mini train at mayors office

        When the first trains started running in Mexico Benito Juarez came down on it to inaugarate the station in Puebla, it did an astounding maximum speed of 32 kilometers per hour. He stopped in Apizaco where he was given a 21 canon salute. And with the modernizing of the transport system it caused a boom in business, suddenly ranchers could get there cattle to market more efficiently, pulque (cactus juice) sales soared , the sport of bullfighting reached new heights, all kinds of new businesses bloomed.

 Crime also modernized, on February 20th of 1870, a group of armed horsemen robbed the train of 2700 pesos (pesos were gold back then) and watches, rings, etc., by a bandit leader named  Sotero Lozano. As he was departing he gave the Conductor a signed receipt for the amount robbed.  Why he did that I have no idea…..maybe he thought if he was caught he would tell the judge he intended paying it back ??

 Just 3 weeks later the train was robbed again by a group of bandits lead by Paulino Noriega… this time no receipt. The railroad learned its lessen and the next trains carried a contingent of armed soldiers, thus ending the robberies.

 On the tour we visited the Basilica of the Virgen of Mercy, the monument of Railroad Hero, Jesus Garcia who jumped aboard a train of gunpowder and roared out of town (the town of Nacozari, Sonora) and died in a tremendous explosion but saved the town., also we visited the train museum, a miniature train exhibit and the railroad union offices where we were greeted by the Secretary General in charge of the Railway Workers Union, (Mr. Pedro Stevenson) and his brother Marco Antonio Stevenson who explained the murals in the building and train history.

 Retired Railway Worker  Don Ruben Leon told us many interesting anecdotes & stories about his work with  the railroad in Apizaco.

the basilica of the virgen of mercy

Hanging out of the caboose

 To see more of our tour of Apizaco, go to this link…… http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2062578&id=1162394476&l=1ddc961fb5  

Dental Caravan in Mexico

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 As a finishing touch on their Excursions in Mexico, the Genuine Tourists (Steve & Pat) went on a dental mission to a small village in the State of Puebla, along with many dentists, nurses, Doctors intrepreters and myself.

We saw many villagers who were in need of medical & dental assistance. It was very rustic but left us with a feeling of joy to be able to help them. Pat & Steve are back in the States now but hopefully we will be able to do something similar next year.

Steam coming from Mount Popocatepetl

to see more photos of the dental mission go to :

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2061426&id=1162394476&l=f88e02d120

Mountain Medical Mission

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Heres more photos on our Mission trip to the Sierra Mountains. The weather was cold but the people were warmhearted. About 30 Dr.s & nurses showed up and half of them went further up in the Mountains to a Village called Ixtepec while we stayed in the village of Tatoxcac and saw about 500 people . check the photos.

Bob & Dr. Boyce

 

our first patient was a 2 day old baby girl who was in good shape but needed a checkup.

 

Dr. Boyce sees another patient

 go to this link to see more photos.

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2057834&id=1162394476&l=db4f8ba6a7

Going to a movie

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 The genuine tourist & his wife were in town so we decide to take in a movie. Here you can see what a horrible theatre we went to… They kept bugging us before the show started asking if we wanted a Margarita or a Martini (extra dry).   Life is Hard South of the Border.

At the Movies...I'll have a Tequila Sunrise !!

Steve relaxing after a hard day browsing through the Mall

V.I.P. Movie Theatre at ·Angelopolis" in Puebla, Mexico

 I don’t know if I can stand much more of this primitive living.

The movie was “Desde mi Cielo” (“Lovely Bones”).

The Snows of Mexico

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  This has been an unusual week, all the surrounding volcanoes have snow on them and a lot of snow. And I hear the South has been blanketed also. Southerners are completely lost when it snows and Mexicans even moreso. However todays a nice day, the suns shining and its about 62 degrees, theres still snow on the mountains.  I had to work in it a few times in the states, it’s pretty on a mountain top but I was in Grand Rapids one year and Chicago another…when it turns to black slush it ceases being pretty. Being from the South I’m lost in it…thats why I’m in Mexico.   See you folks after the Spring Thaw…..!!!!

Popocatepetl blowing off steam

Alans first snowball fight

Mike cools it in the forest around Popocatepetl

to see more photos of the snow on the volcanoes go to this link…

http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2053951&id=1162394476&l=6464c57fe3

E.T. Phone Home

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worlds largest milimetric telescope

 The University of Massachussets and the National Astrophysics Institute of Puebla are carrying out a joint venture with the Worlds largest Radio Telescope located on  Top of Sierra Negra Mountain at an altitude of 4,850 meters above sea level near Ciudad Serdan , Puebla,

large millimeter telescope

 They will be studying primitive stars, comets , organic molecules and satellite atmospheres.

extra terrestials on the brink of discovery??

mt. sierra negra and the pico of orizaba

work on the telescope started in 2006 and was just recently finished, Tests are being run every day by scientists and astronomers from different parts of the world.

 The Telescope cost close to 350 million dollars to build, the reflective disc is about 150 feet in diameter, a highly sensitive instrument to chart the universe.

for more info check this link…

http://www.springerlink.com/content/u104408415587l00/

New Years Day in Mexico City

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 I wanted to go to Ixtapa to lay on the Beach but all the Airlines were loaded, all the Beach Hotels had reached capacity…so I thought..Hell…everybody left Mexico City, thats the place to go.

And I was right…plenty of hotels and lots of places to visit.

the little horse

graffiti in Mexico City

attacked by "Predator"

templo mayor archeological zone

 We went to the Templo Mayor in downtown Mexico City…it was great.

Then we saw the worlds largest Christmas tree…it got into the Guiness world book of records, 99 meters tall, over a million lights.

Hope everyone has a good new year….check the links for more photos…

http://travel.webshots.com/album/576175460iaWGbO?vhost=travel 

http://travel.webshots.com/video/3029121520105797444AlnewM?vhost=travel

Also got to see some huge meteorites in the mining museum…

meteorites..found in chihuahan desert

Worlds Largest Mural…. The Polyforum

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self portrait

self portrait

David Alfarp Siquieros…

Back in the 60’s Industrialist Manuel Suarez  started looking for a site to build a major business and cultural center which became the World Trade Center of mexico City Within the Complex but separated from it was a building completely covered by a mural  painted by World reknowned Muralist David Alfaro Siquieros . Manuel Suarez himself had studied in the Art Academy of San Carlos, the oldest art school in Mexico. He was the same age as Siquieros and both had been veterans in the Mexican Revolution. The Geometric form of the building is a diamond shape supported by four coloumns.  It was a dream come true for Siquieros, the total integration of architecture, painting and sculpture. The mural is made with acrylic  paint  , each of its panels has different symbolic meanings depicting the expressions of man and nature. In it Siquieros portrays these themes:

  • The Leader – the World marches on
  • The Environment – the leafless tree and the tree reborn
  • The acrobats
  • The masses
  • Decalogue
  • Christ
  • Indigenous People
  • Dance
  • Mythology
  • The Mingling of Races
  • Music
  • The Atom

Polyforum mural        Polyforum mural      Polyforum mural            Polyforum mural

The Mural is in a round room and you sit in a chair and the walls rotate around you.  An Amazing Mural that is a must see when in Mexico City.

More Photos…..

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10203840085300205.1073741857.1162394476&type=1&l=9463b17562

PREHISPANIC DEITIES

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PREHISPANIC DEITIES
One of my favorite archeological pieces, which dates back about 800 years, was found near the Cacaxtla Archeological Zone, When you see the name you´ll know why it´s my favorite.
Known as Coxcox , (Maybe it was an ancestor?) , the god who gave humans speech, sometimes called teocipactli the lizard lord who along with his wife Xochiquetzal (feathered flower) were the originators of humanity.

Coxcox
This statue is located in the Regional Museum of Tlaxcala.
In this same museum we find other pieces such as Ehecatl, the god of wind, with an elongated mouth that looks like he is blowing out candles.

san Jose=cathedral=museo regional 037

 

There is also a Chaac mool, several chaac mools have been uncovered in Mexico , some of Mayan Origen and others of Mexica or Aztec Indian tribes. Mayan Chaac mools can be distinguished by the fact they are looking over their right shoulder where as Mexica Chaac mools are looking over their left shoulder. This one was found in the town of Nativitas, Tlaxcala. The first one was discovered by accident at the Chichen Itza Archeological zone.
archeologist Augustus  Plongeon       san Jose=cathedral=museo regional 042

As it was covered with a red dust the natives called it the red warrior. It is considered to be a divine messenger, my friend Carlos says it was the equivalent of UPS . However the packages they delivered back then were usually human hearts.

THE PYRAMID IN THE SUBWAY

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THE PYRAMID IN THE SUBWAY

 

Back in the sixties the government, in preparation for the upcoming Olympic games of 1968 decided to start building the subway in Mexico City. While excavating in the downtown section of what is now known as Pino Suarez station they unearthed a round shaped pyramid. Actually my history professor would dispute that claim and tell me, “It’s not a pyramid it’s an altar built by the Mexica Indians around the 1400’s.”

 

Dedicated to Ehecatl the wind god.

Dedicated to Ehecatl the wind god.

It’s discovery presented a problem , the National Institute of Archeology and History ( INAH), intervened and after serious discussions metro officials signed an agreement to let the altar remain and allow INAH officials to preserve and maintain it.

So passageways were built around it, local fauna planted to spruce it up , river rocks and illumination were implemented. Now over 40 years later close to 200,000 people a day pass by this magnificent prehispanic monument on their way to work or daily routines. A touch of history to remind them of the past.

Mexico City Subway

Mexico City Subway

 

The METRO as the subway system is called has many locations that feature art, culture and history to see more check this link by Peter Davies…….

http://mexicocitymetro.wordpress.com/

MOCTEZUMAS NIGHTMARE

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Moctezumas Nightmare

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 Moctezuma, The emperor of the Aztec Empire, )called Montezuma in English, but whose name was really Motecuhzoma, to difficult to pronounce by either English or Spanish had a foreboding feeling about the future  and his superstition was one of the many factors that caused the fall of the Aztecs.

 

 The Aztecs believed the God Quetzalcoatl )The plumed Serpent= was a white skinned god with a red beard and that he had went to the east and disappeared but had left a message that he would return in the year One Cane of the Aztec Calendar.

 

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About ten years before this date many things happened in Tenochitlan that were considered to be ill omens. All of these  were recorded in the ¨Florentine Codice¨.

There were eight events that caused great apprehension and fear throughout the empire.

First of all a shining light was seen in the sky to the east that seemed to be a comet with drops of fire falling from it, It could be seen at nightfall till dawn for several months.

 The second omen was when the temple of the god of war burst into flames and was reduced to ashes .

The third disaster came when lightning struck the temple of Tzommolco, a part of the Main Temple. It occured on a clear day  and the witnesses to it said strangely enough there was no accompaning thunder.

The fourth presage was fire that fell from the sky with a rattling sound. Shortly thereafter a fifth event occured when the water of the lake started boiling and it overflowed the banks damaging many houses.

The sixth omen came on several nights when the emperor could hear a womans voice coming from the lake as he stood on his terrace, crying out mournfully… saying: “ My children, my children, where have they been taken?”     Moctezuma sent out search parties but they found nothing. After the conquest this story was told many times and I believe it is the basis for the myth of the crying woman. A tale that is still prevalent and used to scare disobedient children with the threat that the crying woman will come for them if they misbehave.

The Weeping Woman

 

The seventh and strangest omen came when a group of fishermen caught a crane in their nets that had a shiny mirrorlike stone embedded in its head. It was presented to the King and when he looked at it he said he saw stars, the constellation of Taurus, groups of agitated men and men riding on deers. (note: there were no horses or draft animals in preColombian Mexico) . He looked away and called his astrologers but when he looked again the images had vanished

The eight omen it was said that deformed persons had been found wandering the streets a person with two heads was seen.

 

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Moctezuma asked his astrologers and prophets what all these things meant and they said it signified the end of the empire and the return of Quetzalcoatl. All of these things cast a shadow of depression and gloom upon the land.

 The year one cane (1519 A.D.) was fast approaching and the Emperor was sure that the plumed serpent would return.  The stage was set for disaster.

So we ask, Did Moctezuma see a vision and forecast of the Spanish coming??

 

THE RISE OF TENOCHITLAN

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The Rise of Tenochitlan

the plumed serpent

    the plumed serpent   

God of War

God of War

Tlaloc the rain god

Present day Mexico City sits atop the ruins of the Aztec Empire. The Spanish systematically destroyed many things such as the templesand buildings and used the stones to build their own Colonial Empire. The Aztecs had thousands of pictographic manuscripts recordind their history , customs, astronomy, medicine and other things all of which were burned by the Spanish priests because they looked demonic. Only 13 codices remain. Now archeologists and anthropologist struggle to piece this puzzle together as to what went on in the Aztec world.

About 1325 nomadic Aztecs left a place called Aztlan or the place of seven caves and arrived in the area of what we now know as Mexico City. At that time it was a huge lake with a small island in the center . The high priests saw an eagle with a snake in its mouth alight upon a cactus and decided this was a sign from the gods that they should settle there.
Within a hundred years they had built a society that dominated the Central Highlands all yhe way to Guatemala, the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific.
It was a society of Priest warriors who demanded tributes )taxes= from surrounding sedentary tribes.
An exception to this rule was the tiny Republic of Tlaxcala, a confederation of regions ruled by four kings who would meet to discuss important decisions.
They informed the Aztecs that they had never paid tributes to anyone before and they had no intention of ever doing so. This arrogance couldn´t be tolerated by the Aztec rulers and there was a continuous state of war, raids and skirmishes between them.
Although they were outnumbered by about 20 to 1 , the Tlaxcalans were fierce fighters and managed to hang on to their sovereignty.
Tenochitlan had a population of around 200,000 inhabitants. In spite of their warlike nature they developed culture, art, music, architecture and had a well organized society. They made great buildings and sculptures without the aid of metal tools, the wheel or draft animals.
But there was a sickness eating at the soul of this civilization, the sickness of human sacrifice and an oppressive government that subjigated its subjects many of whom were just waiting for a way to get out from under its heel.
The main deities that the Aztecs worshipped were Quetzalcoatl (The Plumed Serpent), Tlaloc (The Rain God), and Huitzilapochtli (God of War), and others, all of which had a great thirst that could only be quenched with blood About 10,000 people a year were sacrificed to these gods, and on special occasions even more.

And this was the situation just prior to the arrival of the Spanish.

THE CITY OF THE GODS

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The City of the Gods

Pyramid of the Sun

Pyramid of the Sun

About 30 miles  Northeast of Mexico City is Teotihuacan , Which means ¨The Place of the Gods¨. Now a major Archeological Zone and one of the best preserved in the Country. It began as an agricultural center around 200 B.C. . It reached it´s peak about  450 A.D. and it´s power reached as far south as Guatemala.  The City itself was one of the first urban cities, well planned and organized. It covered an area of 8 square miles, larger than even Imperial Rome.  It was a cultural trading center whose influence can be found in the architecture of other cities that sprang up about the same time, such as Cholula  and Cantona. Pyramid of the moon10 048            teotihuacan march 24, 2010 052   Somewhere around the year 600 A.D. it went into a decline and collapsed, we can only speculate as to the reason why… plagues, wars with wandering Nomadic Tribes, Internal Strife and rebellions, natural disasters such as droughts.  Archeologists suggest that one reason for it´s collapse was  deforestation of the area for miles around.  The city´s structures were all painted white  with  quicklime  whatwash which has a process of being burned, the amount of whitewash that had to be processed consumed huge amounts of wood  possibly causing an ecological disaster  maybe along with droughts and other phenomena . By the time the  nomadic Aztecs arrived, , around 1300 A.D.,  Teotihuacan had been long abandoned leaving the Aztecs to believe that only Gods could have built such a grandiose place.

 

Temple of the Plumed Serpent

Temple of the Plumed Serpent

Tlaloc the rain god

TLALOC The Rain God.

More photos here….

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2013 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 19,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 7 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.