Thursday, our first in Mexico City, we kept it mellow and walked around Polanco, which all the guidebooks say is the "Beverly Hills of Mexico City." It's true that I saw a BMW motorcycle and lots of professional dog walkers, but Polanco has more urban flare than BH. We spent a lot of time at Lincoln Park; there's a statue of Lincoln here that says "a gift from the people of the United States to the people of Mexico." Nearby a store had hung a #fucktrump banner.
|Better than a wall.|
Friday morning we visited Coyoacan, an arty, historical neighborhood that's held a place in my mind since reading The Lacuna (although I sort of thought it was a small town, not part of Mexico City). Being there was immediately just-right--the blue and yellow and salmon-colored buildings, the red and pink flowers. The market like the old Grand Central Market, with its gorgeous fruit-porn, neon smoothie kiosks, fish, chiles, arte, pinatas.
|Mexico loves fruit.|
|Frida loves fruit. Fruits love Frida.|
That night Molly and Laura and I went to Lucha Libre, which was pretty great. Afterward, I told AK (who stayed behind because we had some logistical confusion and because Dash has bedtime separation anxiety), "They say it's a sport, but it's actually acrobatics and theater."
AK said, "So what you're saying is 'but it's actually good.'"
I think Molly was mildly worried I'd be offended by all the eye-candy girls in fishnets and pseudo-violence, so she did a lot of contextualizing. But the whole thing is amazing, even ideologically. It's this mix of improv and choreography, stereotype and complexity, masculinity and homoeroticism. One of the "good guy" teams consists of two beefcakes who do hip circles after pinning a dude, and a guy in a little tutu who literally minces between (badass) moves. To me, that's three or four degress removed from mocking homosexuality. It's more like finding a way to embrace it.
I was wearing shorts, semi-inappropriately, but the space was full of little kids in frilly dresses and tiny white suits. We saw a couple of people making pilgrimages on their knees. Families of poor Indios with skinny kids who seemed like they'd come a long way.
|Dash pointed and said "house."|
By the time we got to Teotihuacan, we were both exhausted from trying to carry on a conversation with a stranger in a language we didn't really speak. I'd been letting AK do the heavy lifting on that front. She was intimidated by all the shallow-but-steep stairs, but I was seized by a sudden desire to do something impressive. I've spent so much time lately feeling mediocre at everything--work, writing, parenting, marriage. I wanted to do something great in the simplest way. So with Dash strapped to my chest, I powered up all those stone stairs. And my knees were jelly and I cried; I think my body just remembered what it was like to actually push myself to do something other than stay awake. In other words, I finally worked out hard enough that some endorphins got released.
|Dusty but happy.|
|Dante and Dash.|
|Babies on parade.|
I understand the significance of ancient artifacts, but a lot of times they don't speak to me. It's like, yep, there's a carving. But behind each exhibit, the doors opened onto an outdoor space where you could climb on replicas of pyramids or wooden houses. It was jungley and kid-friendly, and it felt more like inhabiting an ancient world than learning about one.
|Our docent had a short attention span.|
I'm forty now. That's a whole other post.