Hola from our second destination in Mexico and trip. We are currently writing from our second and vastly better hostel. Unlike our first hostel, this one has an outdoor courtyard with trees in the center, balconies, a fresh breakfast made by the staff that consists of eggs, cheese, (meat that we do not opt for), beans, coffee, fruit, bread and pie filling (used as jam). The bathrooms are clean and there is drinking water always accessible! But the hosetl is the least of the excitement in Oaxaca. But first…to finish our Mexico City adventures… Our last week, we did homework in our (new) favourite park, admired the inexplainably gorgeous grounds of Museo Delores Olmedo, explore the zocalo, a did a lot of walking and snacking on pastries and fruit and finished the week with craft Mexican beers with our classmates and a couple teachers from the school (in total representing 6 different countries…and of course spoke English). The grounds and various buildings of art at the Delores Olmedo museum were so beautiful…there were, what seemed to be prehistoric cacti, peacocks wandering the grounds that would walk right up to us, the almost extinct Xoloitzcuintli aka Mexican hairless dogs and amazing architecture. Delores was a patron of Diego Rivera and we got to see many sketches and additional works and photo of both he and Frida in addition to other Mexican art. Best of all, we went on the free day!
This brings us to our current residence in Oaxaca. The colors are brilliant, the people are friendly, and the streets are clean. After our 6.5 hour busride passing mountainside homes, possible slums, a lot of clothes drying in the air, and some of the most incredible cacti covered mountains I’ll ever see, we arrived amidst a Mexican holiday! Our first meal out was streetside to a church with a brass band, a ton of people and loud fireworks. This town is known for it’s markets and crafts and we have certainly not lacked exploring! We have seen everything from colorful hand woven clothes and home decor to whole pig heads, chicken feet and the (in)famous baskets of insects. I am working on the courage to actually put one in my mouth! Additionally there are a lot of ceramics and fresh fruit and vegetables.
Sunday we watched our first American football game of the year…the super bowl! But in Spanish and without the puppy bowl or the million dollar commercials. We watched it at our hostel and enjoyed an 8 pack of beer for just under $7USD!
Again, we are surrounded by people from every continent and…everyone speaks English. Today, however, we got to use our Spanish when we spent our afternoon volunteering at Oaxacan Street Children. There, we met the only two other Americans of our trip so far. We drew pictures and helped them with homework and, in turn, they helped us with our Spanish! While Meg was helping one little boy with his math, I learned that his father was an alcoholic and his sister was just sold into marriage and that the meal he eats at the center might be his only for the day.
Tonight we will catch a free movie at the local art house and attempt to figure out our stupidly expensive flights from Guatemala to Colombia!
Oh silly us. We forgot to add the ruins we have attended. In Mexico City we climbed the 3rd largest pyramid at Teotihaucon with Victoria and yesterday we traveled to Monte Alban which is the first group of people to have used written language and we saw structures dating back to 300-100 BCE! Incredible!
We will try to post photos, but not having a laptop is proving the task to be difficult so keep up with our instagrams or facebook photo posts!