I was talking to a friend the other day who asked me why I keep returning to Mexico and what my favorite things about this country are. He asked about places and food specifically. So I will delve into those two first.
Places. There are so many beautiful places in this country. I took a spectacular train trip up the Copper Canyon my first winter in Mexico. We stopped in several areas with amazing views and old churches.
The old churches here in Mexico fascinate me. When I lived in Guadalajara, Isaias and I traveled on the weekends to many small towns in the state of Jalisco. And every one of them had a church adjacent to the main plaza, town square. Here in Aguascalientes I have visited several churches as well. And I have always checked out churches in the various places where I’ve lived in Mexico.
I’ve lived in a few very different places. Three small towns I’ve lived in include Irapuato, Rosarito and San Ciro de Acosta. They’re good for shorter stays. Mazatlan was too touristy although the malecon, beach and sunsets are magnificent. Culiacan is definitely not at the top of my list as a single female although I go back often to visit my Mexican family. Guadalajara is an exciting city and there was a time when I thought I might stay there. This is my third year in Aguascalientes and I enjoy the tranquility here.
I’ve stopped looking for that perfect place to settle down in. Instead I’ve learned to appreciate the things each has to offer from museums to art galleries to beaches to mountains and everything in between. I’ve climbed pyramids, explored a silver mine and gone on tequila tours. I’ve visited zoos and amusement parks. It’s been an amazing eleven plus years.
Moving on to food. The award for the best churros definitely goes to Tlaquepaque. The best tamales are in Sinaloa. I actually thought the tortas were the best too. I think Aguascalientes takes the prize for enchiladas. Pizza…definitely Guadalajara, as well as Chinese food and chicken mole. Aguascalientes also has the best gorditas. I discovered the delicious pastes in Pachuca this winter. It’s also a fallacy that all Mexican food is spicy.
However my very favorite thing about Mexico is the people and the culture. I love walking down the street when complete strangers greet me with “Buenos Dias.” I love buying something at a tienda and saying gracias and the vendor says “no, gracias a ti!” I love getting off a bus and the driver says “que tengas un buen dia.” I could go on and on. The rest of North America should take a lesson from this.
And there is always a mañana, another bus, another train. Stress doesn’t exist the same way it does in the USA or Canada.
This is why I keep returning to Mexico.