09-Apr-2012 mazatlan, mexico.
Days like today remind us why we both like to cruise and to find ourselves constantly "living" in new places. We love getting out and just wandering new places, seeing what we can discover along the way. Of course now we do it with kids so we find ourselves discovering more than just those tiny, dark, hole-in-the-wall drinking dens that we used to zero in on.
Today as we rode the bus towards Old Town with no real destination in mind other than hopping off at the cathedral or main plaza we drove past a playground. A real playground, with slides, swings, teeter-totters, and even a bit of grass. This sort of thing is unheard of in Mexico. You know all those playgrounds back home in suburbia that we all take for granted? Ali and I no longer do. So that seemed like as good a place as any to get off the bus and begin our day. We had overshot it by a couple of blocks and on the walk back passed by a taco stand where Ouest let us know she was hungry. They have a different kind of taco here called a suave. It's a soft taco, like mushy to the point you can't pick it up, plopped on a plate with some red sauce over it. It was pretty good, as our family taco connoisseur confirmed by eating two. After the snack the kids played for a while, managed somehow to avoid anything necessitating a trip to the doctor for a tetanus shot, and then we set out inland with no destination other than to get back into the Old Town neighborhood a bit.
It was beautiful. We've been through Mazatlan half a dozen times but never really noticed how interesting a place it is before. Every single building is a different color, is in a different state of decay, and has a different amount of graffiti tagged on it. That doesn't sound especially nice I suppose if you are a local living here, but for the four of us walking through the neighborhoods it provided lots of stimulation. By the end of our wanderings we were well and truly lost, dirty, tired, and hungry. We asked a local which way back to the water, discovered it was the opposite direction we were headed, jumped in a pulmonia taxi, and jumped out at the first sign of food which turned out to be a sidewalk place outside of the market.
This was still a few blocks off the malecon so there were no gringos around other than us with our adorable pinchable-cheeked children. I swear if we stay in Mexico for a few more years they are going to grow up sure that they are somebody famous. And Lowe, the ham of the two of them, is going to get it the worst because he just eats it up. He gets snatched up by ladies almost daily and is then immortalized in their family photo albums, grinning all the while.
A quick walk through the market to observe full cows and pigs being butchered in the aisles, and to buy some fruit before dragging ourselves back down the street to the main road to flag down a bus and go home for naps. Fun day in a fun town, and we're already looking forward to heading back down to get off the bus in a different neighborhood.
And then back on the boat at the end of the day, playing out on deck.