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Thursday, December 11, 2014

Mexico City 3

Coyoacan was our destination for day four. This is a lovely old neighbourhood on the south side of the city famous for some of its notable residents, namely Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo, Leon Trotsky, Luis Bruñuel, Lila Downs, Laura Esquivel, etc. Until the mid 19th century when it was incorporated into Mexico City, it was a separate community. Now, with it's narrow tree lined streets, plazas and historic homes, it has become a major tourist attraction.

I like Coyoacan, the big mercado with some of the tastiest ceviche tostadas in the city,

the annual tamale festival,

And the odd grasshopper (chapulines)
 

the National Cultural Museum, the Frida Kahlo/Diego Rivera/Leon Trotsky saga, and the genteel, laid back feel of the place. I'm not a big Frida Kahlo fan and have never visited The Blue House, The Frida Kahlo Museum, the home where she was born and shared on and off with Diego Rivera and where she died, but my travelling companion, Phyllis, was interested so we found our way there. The museum contains some of her artwork and memorabilia from her life there and the house and gardens are very lovely in their own right.

I did gain more of an appreciation for her work after visiting there and, there's no denying, her life story is noteworthy whatever one thinks of her art. The Mercado Coyoacan is a short walk from Frida's place and there are some very tasty ceviche tostadas to be had there so that was our destination for lunch.

For the uninitiated, ceviche is a method of preparing fish and seafood by marinating it in citrus, usually lime, with chilies, allowing the acidic nature of the marinade to "cook" the fish. The dish originated in Peru some 2,000 yrs ago and is popular all over Latin America. After wandering the mercado we had a beer in the plaza and caught a cab home to get ready for our big night out to hear jazz at the Rufino Tamayo museum. There was some confusion about the starting time for the concert, at least in my mind, so we arrived about two hours early. This turned out to be a good thing as there was some very interesting art on display, not to mention free wine in the chi-chi cafe. This was a very different part of town with a very different demographic. Polanco, where the museum is is a very upscale area where the beautiful people live. The concert was held in a very nice small theatre and featured a quartet led by a vibes player with drums, sax and guitar. Not great music unfortunately; long aimless solos and little interaction among the players. Good drummer though.

And so our stay in Mexico City ended.

 

 

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