Not feeling like tacos for breakfast this morning, we walked to the supermarket that was located across the Vips we dined at the first day in Mexico. This supermarket was MASSIVE, but it was awesome because it’s got everything I needed. The prices for everything seems to be about 30%-40% cheaper than back home. And when we finished at the cashier ready to pickup our bags from the bag lady, we got this extended stare from her, which was a bit strange but it wasn’t until later that I realized….you need to tip the bag lady!!
First stop was the city centre once again and into what is called Temple Mayor, which roughly translates to “The Greatest Temple”, and not the Mayor’s Temple. Mexico City was previously a great city of its own, called Tenochitlan, but the city was demolished and the massive Cathedral was said to have been built over it. They lied, and the excavations can show that the remains of a once magnificent Aztec pyramid once stood here, about 200m away from the massive Cathedral. It was pretty cool to get to know the history of this city, and the museum that goes along was beautifully designed and curated.
You really get a sense that, everything done in Mexico City was planned very well, from the metro station walkways to the gardens scattered around the city, and even the interior design of the museums, it really gives a sense of purpose to everything they do.
Next, we visited the Modern Art Museum and it’s sibling the Tamayo Museum of Contemporary Art, with the latter being named in honour of Ruffino Tamayo, a Mexican artist who did well for himself and donated this building to the public. Both buildings are designed very well, but the Modern Art Museum had the bigger names, particularly several of Frida Kahlo’s most identifiable pieces. The best part about the Tamayo Museum was definitely the open space the actual building sits upon, as it’s comfy and quiet, with the sleek lines of the museum sprouting out quietly amongst the trees. It has a pretty awesome gift shop, too.
We finished up our museum tour and headed over to the tourist district of Zona Rosa. With lively streets and lots of bars trying to out-price each other (we saw a place selling 2L of beer for 200pesos, or about $16). The strangest part though, was the lines were the longest at Chili’s. Yes, the American chain restaurant. SO STRANGE. There are also Starbucks on every corner and every American fast food chain you could imagine. The best part though, was that we found some Korean restaurants, and that’s where we feasted for the evening. Delicious!
After dinner, we were too full and ended up taking an hour stroll around town. Contrary to our original naïve impressions, the downtown areas of Mexico City feel extremely safe, very modern and delightfully artistic. And the best part was, contrary to anything anyone ever says, the public parks at night are BRIGHTLY illuminated with colourful fountains everywhere. Here in the parks, families take their evening stroll and lovers publicly express their love. Compared to all the cities we’ve been so far, it feels like Mexico City is the liveliest and happiest city…. What an interesting place!