I hired a driver - (Uriel) today to take me to Puebla. I invited Jackie along who wanted to check out Cholula and the Volcano they have there. On the drive out, we passed this one section of freeway where they had more pedestrian bridges than we may have in all of Phoenix. There had to be 20 or 30 of them. The road to the Volcano was closed due to activity, and we could not have gone anyway because you needed a high ground clearance vehicle to drive it.
First - Cholula
With the volcano off the list, we visited the Cathedral they built on top of an old pyramid. That pyramid is another one of those ancient structures that is simply hard to understand the scale of. It was exhausting walking up the walkway.
In the painting of the church, you start to get a feel for how big this "hill" really is. Also, inside the church every surface has some amount of fold leaf on it. They have more gold leaf on religious works than any place I have ever been. And it's thick too. It's pretty obvious that the Spanish colonies were all about the gold. Anything yellow in the photos above is CAKED with gold. These are still active churches, with priests and faithful, but it is still a little hard to imagine building something like this today. This church was constructed in 1666. It has been standing here longer than America existed.
Puebla - Part 2
After Cholula, we headed to Puebla. I know Chris Roth loved Puebla, and it is indeed a beautiful town with another impressive cathedral. It must be more than twice as massive as the church in Cholula, but it is the town square and spaces around it that are wonderful. It is a Spanish colonial city with lots of restaurants and activities for a Sunday.
The central fountain was surrounded by an art exhibition of giant colibris (hummingbirds)
A while later, we participated in a cool art project of our own, run by a local museum. We made clay bowls by hand.
We took our little art projects over to the museum to try and answer a question - why did the ancients put a little hole in one of the feet? We never found the answer (google gave 3 reasons - one was to let steam escape during cooking, the other was to hang them up and save space, the third was some kind of ritual purpose no one knows - always must save room for ritual).
Probably the funniest thing going on was that the clowns (payasos) were protesting because the government would not let them work. I quipped in Spanish that it is a sad day for the world when clowns have to protest. Uriel thought that was hilarious. I later added that maybe the reason the government did not want the clowns working is that they did not want the competition. I was a funny guy.
I did not take pictures of the protesting clowns, I can't really say why. Just didn't feel right.
We found a restaurant called, "Victoria" it was Italian but also had local food. Apparently Mole comes from Puebla, so I ordered Chicken with Mole. It was incredible.
The museum was fantastic, and absolutely enormous. We spent most of the afternoon walking around looking at things, then we spent an hour walking around looking for each other.
Uriel told us we needed to hurry back before dark. It turns out, (a lot like Phoenix) coming home on Sunday night to Mexico City is jammed with traffic. It took 2 hours to go out in the morning, and 3-½ to come back in the torrential rain. Still, I had a great weekend of sightseeing and learned about many other places that are worth visiting.