- Because Mexico: supposedly this is the proper way to take a shot. For tequila/mescal/pulque: put the salt on the lime, suck the juice out of it and keep the juice in your mouth, add the shot and swish it all around for three seconds, then swallow. Actually semi-pleasant.
- Food of the week: TACOS. Ok this has been the food of every day, but worth including. Of course hard shells are not a thing here, they are all on white, yellow or blue soft corn tortillas. And unlike in the states, corn tortillas are really good. There are tacos stands and shops around every corner. Orinoco, Don Juan, El Califa, and Tacos Hola have been among the favorites. I have to be a bit more picky because some only serve red meat. Favorite veggie tacos: Por Siempre Vegana.
- Drink of the week: pulque. An alcohol made from the fermented sap of the maguey plant, a giant agave cactus. According to many, it’s very semen like. Tasted sweet, definitely syrupy.
- The city is in the top 10 most populated cities in the world, coming in with about 21 million people.
- Uber is a good way to get around, pretty cheap, reliable, and quick. UberEats is good and Rappi food delivery also a thing, though they won’t bring food to your individual apartment unit, only the building. Pro tip: Rappi your bottled water so you don’t have to carry the heavy bottles from the store.
- Tipping culture is real. Like most other places we’ve been, 10% is customary. BUT also expected to tip the baggers at the grocery stores. Salaries are low across the board.
- Drugs here are illegal, but marijuana and cocaine are decriminalized in small amounts. Though not as big of an issue as Colombia for tourists to be aware of, still a factor.
- Chilango is the term used to describe Mexico City inhabitants that were born and raised here.
Activities of the week:
- M- Bachelor night, aka an excuse to get together and laugh about other people’s drama
- T- Jackbox, the online game series that everyone can link up to from their phone, with the group and some extras. SO many laughs. Also watched everyone drunkenly indulge on $80 worth of Papa John’s, KFC, and McDonalds.
- W- Another PI puppy walk, got a super chill Labrador type dog named Gwenda who didn’t poop once. A blessing. Spent the evening at another hipster food market called Comedor de los Milagros then hanging with close friends at their apartment. Ugh, gonna miss these late night laughs
- Th- Work a bit from the café Blend Station, with about thirty other digital nomads that made it a bit too loud. Another night playing Jackbox with the group. I wasn’t lying when I said all I did was spend time with people this week.
- F- Lunch break bike ride to Zona Rosa, another nearby neighborhood. Dinner with friends then greet the fam! My cousin-in-law(?) Jenn, brother Cobi, and friend Emmi arrived to CDMX for the long weekend!
- Welcome brunch with the fam at Maque, in Condesa, followed by a walk around the area and my month’s stomping grounds
- Walk to Chapultepec Park and meet friends to explore the park and castle. This castle was originally a vacation home for rulers, but later became a military fort probably because of its location on a hill in the middle of the city. The beautiful greenery on the top floor of the castle was my favorite.
- Vegan cooking class that Jenn found on AirBnb Experiences, called Cocina con Claudia. Spend the entire afternoon/evening cooking, drinking, dancing, and laughing. The various finished products were:
- Toasted sesame and peanut salsa
- Guacamole with the special ingredient papalo, game changer.
- Plantain, amaranth, raisin, and walnut fried balls
- And of course, freshly made and pressed tortillas
- Claudia was an impressively strong woman, and in tandem with running these experiences, owns an organic fruit and vegetable farm
- It was hosted at Claudia’s friend’s very traditionally decorated apartment. Claudia’s older mother was also there, she was a joy to cook and dance salsa with.
- The fun was assisted by some mezcal and other cocktails. A joy of a night and something I wouldn’t necessarily have done on my own.
- Finished the night at a RY gathering to say goodbye to two more members…this is getting hard. Late night.
- In true Cobi vacation fashion, we were up and out early again this morning to explore the Coyacan neighborhood
- After brunch with the family and Lindsay at Los Amantes (again), we visited the Frida Kahlo museum. Was fun to visit the place after learning about her and watching her movie earlier this month. It was especially fun to bring Jenn there, an art teacher who has taught about Frida for many years and even dressed as her many times for Halloween.
- Pro tip: you MUST buy tickets ahead of time to avoid waiting in a very long line, especially on weekends.
- Check out some local markets before heading to El Moro in downtown for churros. At this point it started to rain (for the first time since I’d arrived to Mexico City), but we kept on keeping on.
- Take in the view from the Sears of Belles Artes. Yup, best view of this beautiful building is from the bedroom section of the Sears across the street.
- Walk from there to the Zocalo, in the rain, peek at Plaza Mayor (some ancient ruins downtown), then duck into El Cardenal for dinner. Highly recommend this place, filled with locals and yummy food.
- Folkloric ballet at the Belles Artes. Again, not something I would have done on my own but Cobi’s friend is a dancer and it was the perfect reason to check it out! The show was amazzzzzingg and not at all a ballet as you know it. Filled with rhythmic dancing, traditional garb, lasso twirling, and lots of colors. Loved it.
Despite being a bit overwhelmed and totally exhausted juggling the family visit and RY wrapping up, it was really nice to have family here. No one comforts me through challenges better. With two more members of Parea down and heightening nostalgia, on to the FINAL WEEK. Damn.