Monday, July 10, 2006

My (short) Life in Morelia

Well, at the end of the last post I was looking for a ride to the Pacifico Bus Terminal early Sunday am. I found Miguel Angel, the collectivo driver who makes the first collectivo run of the day at about 6:30am, and he agreed to come up and get me at the house in the morning, which was great. And he actually showed up right on time. I had only been waiting at the end of the driveway for about two minutes, sitting in a plastic chair. I threw it in the bushes when I saw him coming. I will retrieve it upon my return.
The three photos on this post are
the Santuario de Guadaupe
Before I forget, the rainy season started Tuesday night, and it has been raining real rain, not sprinkles, every evening, pretty much. Saturday night, when I was looking for Miguel Angel, we had the first flooding, drenching, wet, wet wet rain of the year. Streets running in red muddy water, kids jumping up and down in the water pouring off the roofs and houses and stores, and the streets turning into lakes within minutes. Rivers flowing down the streets.

Got to the Pacifico Terminal at 7am, and the same thing happened again: two times the Guadalajara bus didn´t stop. The five us us who were waiting ended up going to Tepic and then Guadalajara. A total of 5.5 hours/230pesos instead of 3 hours and 150 pesos. Very annoying. Pesos to dollars is about 1:10, sort of.

Got to Guadalajara on a nice Pacifico bus. It was a strange ride. Could have been almost anywhere in the US. Familiar freeway-style roads and signs, and toll booths with rest areas with baths rooms and places to get stuff to eat. There was a whole busload of women and girls waiting in line for three toilets, so I wandered off into the buses to take of business. No one seemed to notice, I hope.
When we got to G. all the Morelia buses seemed to be full. Couldn´t find room on any of them. Went to all the Modules (terminals) and finally I tried Amarilla Flecha, which is part of Primera Plus, and they had room for me. On a bus leaving in 10 minutes. Perfect!!! The actual bus was a Primera Plus, which hadn´t had room for me at their reservation desks. Oh well.

And when I was chatting with the lady sitting next to me we compared our tickets. It turned out I paid 170 pesos and she paid 230 pesos. Same seats (reclining seats with extended legs rests), same built-in cup holders, same two-layer sunshades, and the same "included" bag lunch. First time I rode on an "all-inclusive bus".

I feel like I rarely "get" the whole picture about what's going on here in Mexico. It isn't the language issue so much as constantly making assumptions based on my past experiences, instead of remembering to look and ask, don't assume.

At the Morelia bus terminal I got a taxi for $2.50USD for about a 15 minute drive downtown, to where I am staying: the Hostel Allende. $13USD a night. Small room with bed and nice bath. Two windows, very clean and a decent overhead reading light.

I have been touristing today and am waiting out a rainstorm in an internet place. There are so many beautiful buildings here, and so many places to shop, and so many parks. I love it. Last night I walked the six block to the zocalo (town square at the Cathredral) and watched a concert and the people and had two delicious chocolate chip cookies. From guess where? Subway. They have Subway here, right on the Zocala, and Burger King too. It was weird to see it, and even weirder to buy something there. It's kind of creepy but the cookies were great. American cookies are different from Mexican cookies, and I always seem to prefer the taste of food like my Mommy gave me. Not that she ever made chocolate chip cookies. But Mexican cookies taste different, not familiar.

Anyway, the rain has stopped, and I am Museum bound. This am was Cathedrals and (churches), and now I will museum until I drop.

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