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Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Day 2: El Arte de las Compras

On day two of my Mexican adventure, I went to back to Casa de Frida for breakfast and was introduced to the best breakfast food ever: pan dulce.

Which is basically bread covered in sugar. Mmmmmm. Also on the plate is watermelon, papaya, and another strange breakfast item... It was basically like shredded chicken served with chips. For breakfast! But it was good.

Then we were off to the museum to learn about Mayan culture

and take a group picture.

The first thing we learned about Mayans was that they worshiped Evil Bunny.

The second thing we learned was that they practiced cranial deformation.

If I were a Mayan, this is what I'd look like:

Isn't the 'foot behind the head' pose the best?

Apparently this statue was what people were laid on to be sacrificed or something.

But in my version of things, a Mayan woman on a ship approached her handsome beau holding a headdress and said, "I want you to sculpt me wearing this. Wearing only this" (doesn't it look like that?).

The Mayans didn't bury the dead in the ground; they either used pyramids or these pot-like things.

This was my first (but definitely NOT last) introduction to the Mayan obsession with phallic statues.

When we discussed the Mayan collapse, no one mentioned that they were eating and drinking out of these bowls!

How could they live using dishes like these?

The Mayan people worshiped jaguars. There are jaguar statues and paintings and stuff all over the Yucatan peninsula.

I took a picture in this cut-out thing with Carol before she became a gossip.

Leaving the museum, I saw this piece of art that is located outside the museum. I liked its message.

We then made our way to the Palacio de Goberierno which was filled with murals by Fernando Castro Pacheco. The murals were hard to photograph, but they were really cool. They looked kind of 3D and jumped out at you. Here are some examples (note the jaguar in one!)

One of those pictures was only taken to get the attractive man in it...

Looking out the window of the Palacio, I saw two things:

the cathedral in Merida

and the center of the town, filled with vendors.

So we all headed over to see what was going on. This tree lady stood in the middle of the square, waving her arms around and being generally frightening.

We came to the city at a special time, as they were having their special annual event where performers do traditional dances (and the square was packed for it!). In this dance, the dancers balanced plates and cups on their heads while dancing.

I have a video of a dance the following night that I will share.

After walking around (I didn't buy anything), we went to get lunch at this restaurant.

Which had a mini playground inside.

We ate tacos

and I tried this dish, which was intestine or something.

It didn't taste bad, but the texture was a little gross.

Then we drove back to the hotel. I saw a cop car with the lights on right behind us and got scared (I have a fear of cops).

But it turns out that in Merida, cops never turn their lights off. They stay on at all times, and if they need to pull someone over, they turn on their siren. Interesting.

I also saw 'El Palacio de Polt' in Merida!

Then we finished up the day by doing more shopping. The merchandise in Merida is often bright, sometimes made of stone, and always family-friendly.

And Mexican money is so much cooler than American money by the way!

The vendors in the square are funny because they are really insistent. This woman even dressed Zach, hoping he would buy the shirt once he realized how great it felt on his body.

But the best vendor was this guy. When we were walking out, he asked one of the girls her name and when she asked him his name he said, "Leonardo DiCaprio."

And his store was sweet because the signs were translated into English brilliantly.

But instead of buying phallic statues or dresses, I just got my first ever churro!

It was delicious!
Day two was cool and all, but the next day was one of my favorites... unless I find out that I did get histoplasmosis after all...


Jeffrey said...

I can't wait to check in everyday to see more of your fantastic trip. Keep up the great recaps!


Tam said...

Ohhh, churros, way better than phallic statues, well almost. I loved that it was a Puntabulous day with Evil Bunnies and purple palaces. It just looks so warm and green and wonderful. I'm so jealous. Can't wait for more.

Milo said...

Jealous of the churros! I first had it in Madrid and loved it! Can't seem to get it anywhere else over here, though.

Chris said...

Awesome! I really liked the murals.

Polt said...

You've found my secret Mexican hideaway inDEED! :) And I think the Mayan skulls were like that cause they worshiped Evil Bunny ("worshiping Evil Bunny = hilarious!)

I wonder, could have purchased a phallic dress? now that's something to behold! :)


Michelle M. said...

That freaky tree lady is gonna give me nightmares.