28 May 09 - Acapulco, Mexico
We left Acapulco (sadly) just over an hour ago (thankfully on a beautiful coach and not a tragic bus like the one we caught to Acapulco - geez, that was a struggle. What type of person leaves their spew bag on the floor?) and should be back in Mexico City in approximately 4 hours.
Yesterday was a free day in Acapulco. I'd dreamt of coming here for so long! Our hotel was right on the beach and we all scored balconies overlooking the water. The weather was intensely humid - perfect holiday weather. It was definitely time for more relaxation.
I can see why Acapulco was once the place to holiday. It may have lost a bit of shine from its hay-day, but it is still beautiful, although we were told not to swim in the water as its become slightly polluted (the nice beaches were a bit further out of town, we were told). Luckily we had a pool just downstairs. Still a great place to holiday, but a bit too Americanized - i.e. nestled amongst the countless tex mex taco bars are the usual food giants like KFC, Burger King and McDonald's. We definitely wanted to get away from all that stuff). Essentially, Acapulco reminded me of a super-urban and commercialized Bali, but without all the tourists (bloody swine flu).
Tim and I got up really early for a morning stroll on the beach and then breakfast at a nearby hotel. It was fabulous, and we definitely paid for that fabulousness. After a dip in the pool and an hour of sunbaking, we got ready for the UEFA Cup Final - Tim just couldn't miss it and I'll never forget how his face lit up when he realized it would be on! So cute!
So, we spent the afternoon in our hotel room with Ernesto, Steve and Sarah watching the UEFA Cup Final, with an esky full of Coronas. Although, our eagerness to drink meant we had to use the air-conditioner to quickly cool the beers down before the boys managed to find some ice. Its funny how no one believes in ice in Latin America! It was so great to just kick back with our group faves and watch some sport for a change! (It was even better to see Barcelona win).
That night we went to watch the famous Acapulco cliff divers. They are truly amazing. To my surprise, they free-climb to the top of the cliff - no, no stairs, ropes or anything like that. They just scamper up the cliffside like little squirrels. I found it quite eery that there were Catholic shrines at the top of the cliff to which the divers prayed before they jumped. A bit of divine assistance, I guess. Luckily, there were no accidents on the day we watched.
My tummy is still screaming at me for some dodgy taco I scoffed down last night, although Imust have been unlucky as Tim and Ernesto ate at the same place and they feel fine. Damn Western belly.
I cannot believe that our Mexican fiesta is almost at an end. In fact, we only have one more night left in Latin America. It was such a big part of our adventure and I cannot help but feel a little down to have to say goodbye *sniff*. Our Spanish was just starting to improve… Give me a menu and I will explain anything you want (it's always about food with me). Never mind. We can practice some more in four weeks or so when we run a muck with Mags in Spain! YEEHAAA!
Looking back on my time in Mexico, the following needs to be stressed -
1. Our good ol' Aussie Mexican food couldn't be further from what traditional Mexican food is all about. Think lime juice and barbecued pork, not ground mince and lettuce;
2. Tamales - the best breakfast on the planet - although they may appear vegetarian (it is essentially corn flour mixed with either vegetables or meat and sauce wrapped in corn leaves) they are not. The corn flour is held together by pig fat. Sadly, the two vegetarian girls on the tour were oblivious to the fact, although one of them had only turned vego 10 days before and she'd already tripped up with eating some bacon bits of fher boyfriend's plate! She was so frustrating;
3. There is still a major rift going on between the Mexicans and the Spanish (I.e. Mexicans of Spanish descent). One of the locals we met at the House of Mescal told me he would rather cut open his chest and pull his own heart out than have a drink with a Spanish-Mexican. Yikes!
4. Tequila doesn't have to taste horrible.