A little culture

October 22, 2008 - Toluca, Mexico

Feeling well rested and refreshed after cold showers (due to a broken boiler) the four of us were fed a hearty breakfast by Alan's mum before we walked down into town.  It was market day so the main square was busy and noisy, with traders trying to sell you everything from dried fruits to television aerials.  Our first stop was one of the eight or so churches in the town.  Each one was originally built for an area of the town and they differ in size and style by quite an amount.

We wandered back through the crowded streets and Alan eventually led us to a museum which was focused on the Mayan culture and archaeological finds in the area.  They had also built a replica of a temple which is off limits at the actual site, so giving us the opportunity to have a good nose round.  We then started the long walk up towards the site itself.

This was no easy task as it involved climbing 437 steps up the side of a mountain in the midday heat.  Still, it got the blood flowing.  It was quite impressive at the top, with stunning panoramic views of the town and surrounding landscape.  We could also climb up some of the ruins themselves.  After lazing about in the sun for a while we walked back down and eventually returned to Alan's house for dinner.

We supped a few beers while sat on a very narrow ledge outside one of the bedrooms and then evicted a scorpion from the room Ana and I were sleeping in.  Alan's Granddad came buy on horseback to drop something off, which was a little bizarre to see.  Still, it's more environmentally friendly than the 4.0 or 5.0 litre pick-ups everyone else drives.  Jorge and I walked down to to pick up some more beers while Ana had a siesta and we sunk another couple while it got dark.

Alan decided he wanted to take us to one of his favourite bars so we all tramped down to a place near the main road.  It was a little weird, as it was built above a hand car wash business.  The owner, Horatio, ran the car wash during the day and then the bar opened at night.  As I said, a little weird.  The bar was pretty much a classic rock bar and the free pool table made it an instant hit with all of us.

We got smashed and stayed until the early hours, playing pool and enjoying the music.  We were given some complimentary popcorn which we all tucked in to.  Until I accidentally took a big mouthful of the side covered in extra spicy chili sauce.  Wow!  Eventually we asked Horatio to call us a cab.  He said 'No way!', told his son to watch the bar and piled us all into his buggy.  He appologised for not having much fuel in it so had to drive to his house and swap the buggy for his 4x4.  He then drove us back to Alan's house.  That, right there, is service.


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