Mexico

Mexico

In times of economic meltdown and global hardship, people are wishing on their lucky stars for a bit of good fortune. So it seems only fitting really that some people are turning to the more 'alternative' methods of the 'dark arts', AKA voodoo, to help them out. In some of the more traditional markets here in Mexico, tucked in between the bustling vegetable and fruit stalls and herb stands in the labyrinth of narrow alleyways, you'll find bizarre market traders selling weird and wonderful spiritual help-me-outs. Colourful and creepy good luck charms and figurines, potions, spells, ointments, elixirs, herbs, amulets…
When you're looking for memorable experiences abroad, Cancun holidays are a dead cert to do the job for you, one of the finest trips you can make in all of Mexico and Central America. Providing alluring beaches punctuated by the inviting waters of the Gulf of Mexico, this paradise is indeed the ultimate travel destination for many. Still, there's much more to see in Mexico than the sights on this peninsula alone. One of the lesser-known facts is that in a very real sense, even though you've come to see Cancun, you're also at a "gateway" to the numerous other…
19/03/2013 IT’S fair to say that wherever you are in the world if there is a communication breakdown between languages, it’s wise to speak the universal language of football. Since arriving here nine months ago I’ve often found myself being stared at, blank-faced, by a Mexican wondering what the hell I was going on about. However if my ignorance – or indeed stupidity – in grasping the language has taught me one thing it’s this: if all else fails mention Manchester United, David Beckham, or Christiano Ronaldo. Smiles, laughter and nods of approval will be forthcoming. In fact here in…
07/03/2013 “DO YOU want some of THAT meat in your breakfast taco?” a Mexican friend asks me as we take our places in the queue at one of Tijuana’s best-known and most celebrated taco stands. “What is it?” I ask. Oh… no sooner had I asked, I realized that the long thick piece of meat being ‘shaved’ in front of me was in fact a cow’s tongue. Shaved tongue anyone? People say they enjoy going to restaurants where they can see the chefs preparing the food in front of them. But on this occasion I beg to differ. Taco stands…
22/01/2013 FOOD, glorious food. There really is nothing quite like it. Especially here in the land of tacos. I realise that the vast majority of these blogs have been about food but hey, my tastes, habits and self-inflicted ridicule are a constant source of amusement and entertainment. So why not write about it? If it looks good enough to eat, you might as well tell people about it. That's what I say anyway. Besides, Mexicans talk about food a lot. Like all the time. "Como esta?" "Muy bien, mi quesadilla es incredible". Or something like that. Or is that just…
14/01/2013 BUENOS dias! Oh, and feliz Nuevo Ano (happy New Year). So where was I….? Oh yes, chilis, that’s what I really want to talk about today. I’ve referred to them often enough in this blog without really going into detail about my encounters. So as they’re a cornerstone of meals in Tijuana and Mexico, It seems right to shed some light on the little buggers. Firstly, no matter what anyone says about how great they are and how a dish 'simply isn’t the same' without them, bear this little fact in mind… Capsaicin, one of the main substances found…
02/12/2012 WITNESSING the 'big five' on an African safari, watching humpback whales gleefully leaping out of the ocean, photographing an endangered bird in its natural habitat. All the above are great, but if catching a glimpse of a Tijuana zebra-donkey isn't on that 'things to do before you die' list then it might as well be void. Is it a zebra? Is it a donkey? Is it actually a horse with a seriously bad case of mistaken identity?! Who knows... but the mystical creatures live on the streets of downtown TJ like four-legged gods walking among mere men. In all…
28/11/2012 “BUY something you don’t need?” asked the ageing Mexican as we walked past his magnificently chintzy tourist shop. As far as sales pitches go, this one was pretty lame. But you had to appreciate the apparent brilliance in its sheer honesty. Had we a penchant for buying over-priced rubbish then we might have taken him up on his offer. But we decided to venture on exploring Tijuana’s infamous ‘Downtown’ area. I know I know, I can hear you asking… ‘it’s taken you six MONTHS to go downtown?!’ Personally I’d much rather settle into an area and then do the…
03/07/2012 YOU know, most of the more interesting and funny moments of my new life in Mexico have happened around the dinner table. Telling my girlfriend’s mother that I was feeling ‘horny’ when I meant to say I was feeling ‘hot’ (due to the sun) is a moment which those in attendance will never let me forget. Another standout moment has got to be when numerous members of Jacky’s family tried to teach me to roll my R’s to get the perfect Spanish accent. The sound that came out of my mouth was not a rolled ‘R’, it was more…
27/06/2012 I’VE eaten some amazing dishes in the last two weeks. I’ve also eaten some weird things which I didn’t know whether to consume, or flush. “What’s this?” I ask sat around the dinner table. “Mole” Jacky’s mum replies. “Er...” cue smile followed in quick succession by confused look. “Um, muy bien... que... por que... como... Oh what the hell, sounds good to me”. It’s black, it has the consistency of mashed baked beans and it tastes like chilli and chocolate. Oh, and it’s served over chicken. It could be a lot worse. Another favourite dish over here is chicharron…
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