Tuesday, December 10, 2019

Creel to Chihuahua, Mexico, el dies de Deciembre, 2019

Happy Birthday to my Mom.  She’s 82-

The rain stopped in the night and luckily there was no snow on the ground this morning but it was 0 C.  I had on all my warm clothes and that wasn’t enough.

I had a 5 hour bus ride from Creel to Chihuahua-

Today completes my Copper Canyon voyage-

The bus was not crowded and very comfortable except for the speaker right above my head blaring violent movies. No one was even watching but the driver didn't turn them off.  At least it wasn’t freezing like it usually is.

Along the way we were in and out of the canyon-

And then we were completely out of it and into farmland.  There were a few combines in the fields but none were moving.  They got a lot of rain yesterday too-

I could have been in the foothills of Alberta-

At our first stop, a toothless man hopped on with a cooler of tamales.  I don’t really like them but thought I’d try one again. It was very tasty- corn mash, meat and of course some heat, all wrapped in a corn husk-

Once in Chihuahua, I walked the few blocks to my apartment which is very nice although I’m on a busy street so it won’t be dead silence like the last four nights have been-

Chihuahua was founded in 1709 by the Spanish as a trading centre for nearby mining towns.  There are nearby archaeological sites dating back to 500 AD.  Chihuahua played a small role during the Mexican War of Independence because Miguel Hidalgo was imprisoned and executed here in 1811.  Between 1910 and 1917, it was the base for General Pancho Villa’s army in the Mexican Revolution.

Once settled, I wandered by the Palacio de Justicia Laboral-

Right next to her in Hidalgo Plaza was the Hidalgo Monument-

and on each corner of the square is a shoeshine hut with numerous workers and lots of chairs for men needing shines-

Across the street is the Palacio de Gobierno, a beautiful 19th century building-

Miguel Hidalgo, who is considered the father of the country, was executed here July 30, 1811.  His shrine is on the exact spot where he died-

The building is so detailed-

The murals depict the execution of Hidalgo-

The arches are gorgeous-

Moving on to the Plaza Grandeza, there’s a Christmas Village set up with various shops-

A gigantic tree-

And a Nativity Scene-

Next door is a skating rink of all things.  There was a bit of slush on the surface and some people could skate but lots were hanging onto the rails but everyone was having fun-

The downtown is Plaza after Plaza.  Next to the Grandeza is another monument to Raramuri Mothers-

I kept walking and came upon a food stall - dulce gorditas stuffed with chocolate, condensed milk and peanut sauce. They sound a lot better than they tasted and I think I payed gringo price - that‘s double-

Just down the street is the Juarez House or the Museum of the Republican Loyalty.  The house was used by President of the United Mexican States Benito Juarez as his Presidential Office and his home.  It was used until 1892, then became an elementary school from 1894 - 1967.  The Historic Society took it over and turned it into this museum.

Juarez fled Mexico City in a carriage like this-

His study-

and bedroom-

I kept walking and came to the Plaza de Armas which is also decked out for Christmas-

The Metropolitan Cathedral Church of the Holy Cross, Our Lady of Regla and Saint Francis of Assisi was built between 1725 - 1792.  It is in Spanish Baroque style and in the shape of a Latin cross.  Unfortunately it was closed and there was wood piled out in front so I hope they’re not renovating and it’s completely closed.  I’ll try again tomorrow-

They have cool park benches like Creel with images representing farmers, street cleaners, wood cutters and firemen-

I stopped at Starbucks for more coffee Beans and saw my first every King Cake.  They’re eaten on Epiphany, January 6, the twelfth day of Christmas when the three wisemen visited Baby Jesus.  I used to teach this at school but only ever saw pictures-

I’ve got a few more places to visit tomorrow - looking forward to Chihuahua!

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