Friday, December 14, 2007

Acapulco 2

Again, I find myself in Acapulco.

Not believing the hype of everyone that says Acapulco is just dirty and tacky.

Yes, it has large high hotels stacked on the beach, but that is all forgiven when you see the majestic mountains rising behind them.

I stayed with people in the old part of the town, where all the people go about their daily things and their traditions so you don't feel the bite of resort sterile-ness. You hear the dogs barking in the lanes and feel the heat on your back as you go to the tortilleria (tortilla shop/mill) and watch the old men calling out in gargled voices "bolillos, bolillos" (bread rolls) in the morning. But then you can also get your kicks on the beach lapping up in lovely restaurants and getting massages.

We did some cool things: A big old ship was ported in the bay, we visited that with Julio and his aunt (pictured). We also went to an old fort, amazing! All the trade with the Phillipines and the expansion of Spanish power in this area came through Mexico, as well as pirates, independence fighters and French invaders.
We also watched the famous and incredible divers who jump twice each day off the Quebrada (pictured). It's a great feat: think of people diving off the Gap in Sydney, and surviving unscathed. These guys do that, but two at a time, and with unforgiving surf below. It's awesome.

But definitely one of the best things was the sunset, and then walking down from the cliffs of the Quebrada in the evening we found ourself part of a pilgrimage walking through the streets and lanes down to the main square, for the Day of the Virgin of Guadalupe (the national relgious symbol, Mary as an indigenous woman.. too much to explain here). The procession was awesome, very loco: letting off sharp amateur fireworks with everyone, that went dangerously close to telephone lines.. stopping local buses behind us in the street - they had to deal with it, the whole town was also processing, so it was normal... and the balmy zocalo (main square) full of people.

I DIDNT WANT TO COME BACK TO THE CITY! it was a short weekend away.