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We are traveling in Mexico again this winter of 2012
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Sunday, December 20, 2009

El Fuerte - Our days there

Get a drink and put your feet up this is a long one. We kept pretty busy while in El Fuerte. One day we went for a slow boat ride on the river. We were picked up at the tour office and driven down to the Indian village where the boat was stored. Our guide hooked it up to his suburban and away we went to the river. Backed the truck into the water and unhooked the boat. We got in and started our slow trip back towards town. No motor, just oars. At least he was rowing with the current. Kind of neat and sure quiet. Saw lots of birds but most were too far away to get a decent picture of. A blue Heron They call this a Garza think its an Ibis We made one stop along the river and hiked up into the hills to see some petroglyphs. The trail up. Very interesting. Just a couple of many. According to the historians there has been some type of Indian village in the area for over 3,000 years. The hill they are on was considered sacred and the elders would go up there and use peyote among other things. Nope we didn’t get to do anything but look. Back in the boat we passed these Indian women washing their clothes in the river. Back in town we visited the museum. It is a replica of the old fort from which the town got its name. Built in basically the same area up on top of a little hill next to the river. Lots of interesting information about the region and town. A couple of not connect things that caught my eye were an old electric bookkeeping machine like I used to run when I first got a job in a bank right out of high school – IN A MUSEUM – what does that say about me. And an oil painting of an old man’s eyes. It was beautiful. There are a couple of REALLY nice hotels in town. Went in and looked them over. The most spectacular one I didn’t have my camera with me –gasp!- but it was like going into a museum of all the art in Mexico. Spectacular. It was a 300 year old hacienda restored. The other hotel was more modern but still has a claim to the olden time. Legend has it that at one time on that site there was a home built by Señor de la Vega. So? Well he was the father of ZORRO!!!! Supposedly the young Zorro lived there until he was ten years old. So of course the hotel makes a big deal of that. With statues and a happy hour every night where Zorro shows up and sings and dances. There was a tour group in town so I convinced Bill I NEEDED to see Zorro. So we went there for happy hour and got treated to songs and merriment. Kind of silly but fun. Another night we listened to the high school marching band practice in the plaza. (will add video at the end - just sound too dark to see.) The girls played the drums and the boys the horns. According to the guard right across the street at the municipal building – it’s the only place they can practice without disturbing a whole neighborhood. Of course we found a churro man. Every evening after five he sets up his equipment on the corner of Zaragoza and 16 de Septiembre. He had his big bowl of oil, only the best corn oil – he showed us the bottle, his big bottle of propane for the fire, a metal table with a canopy and a girl to cut the churros into pieces and roll them into the sugar mixture. They were sold by the bag full. They were delicious. He’s been making a living this way for 17 years. The Driver enjoying the churros We found a couple of good restaurants. One right downtown the General. Had beef tips with peppers and onions, Bill had arrachera, a think cut of steak cooked special. Both were delicious. Then we went back there another afternoon and found the tour group there. Much to our delight the restaurant put on a show for them and we got to watch. Beautiful young women from the village came out in costumes that told stories about Mexico, the beaches, the agriculture, the culture. Really nice. The other restaurant we went to after the boat ride. It is right on the river. From our seats we could men in boats setting out their langostinos de aqua dulce, crawdad, traps. We had a specialty of the region; Lobina – bass – stuffed with bacon and cheese. It was pretty good, except we couldn’t taste the fish at all. Two different nights while we were walking around town we found Christmas processions. Mary on a burro with Joseph leading her. Three Kings, angels, peasants, devils and people walking behind with candles. All in costume. The second one was quite elaborate. There was a truck with musicians and at one corner they stopped and put on a whole play about Mary, the devils and the angels and the peasants. Then on to knock on doors looking for a place to stay. As they passed by homes people would come out and sing with them. Both nights we followed them and were made to feel that we belonged there. Another afternoon there was quite an event put on in the plaza by a local radio station. A couple of different groups playing music and singing. At this event there was a raffle – a couple of the things raffled off were – baby clothes and a chicken. Never did figure out what they meant by a chicken. Live? A dinner? From a grocery store? Everyone had fun. Just noticed this - old arches but check out the light bulbs - new energy saving ones As we drove by the schools Friday the children were out in the yards with piñatas – a Christmas tradition. Just a couple of the people we met in El Fuerte Well didn't really met him And then our stay there was over – sure glad we went. On the road towards the beach again.

Video of the marching band - no view just sound! Hear why they practice in the plaza.

1 comment:

Philip said...

Explore, tour, trip and vacation. All of these have the same outcome, A room to rest and stay.

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