Today we went for a day out at Teotihuacan ruins, just outside of Mexico City. Apparently the main structures are commonly (and mistakenly) referred to as pyramids, according to our excellent tour guide, Gabrielle. However I can’t find anything on the internet to concur with this so I’ll refer to them as pyramids. During the 45-minute ride to the ruins you could see an microcosm of the socio-economic make up of Mexico City. At one point we drove past gleaming hotels and shopping malls and a few minutes later there would be favela-like housing built into the hillside as far as the eye could see. Some are painted brightly and appear to have electricity and satellite television but it gives a sobering insight into the rich-poor divide around here.
The ruins are fascinating. Gabrielle told us that back in the day, this was one of the finest ancient cities in the world with a population of 180,000. The engineering behind contstructing such buildings over 2000 years going is brilliant. Unlike the ruins at Chichen Itza, here you are allowed to climb on the ruins. There are two main pyramids. The Pyramid of the Moon has really steep steps, each maybe a foot high as well as being uneven. Going up was not too bad but looking down is no good for a person suffering from vertigo. Travelling down was a bit more challenging. It was best to hold onto the the rope to try and prevent a human domino effect. The main attraction at Teotihuacan is the huge Pyramid of the Sun. People at the summit look like ants from the base. The steps on this one are a bit more user friendly but climbing to the top is a decent workout especially at this altitude. The view is impressive. You can see the layout of city and how it has been deliberately built in geometric patterns.
Of all places for your shoe to fall to bits, the Temple of the Sun at Teotihuacan isn’t ideal. It certainly doesn’t aid the walk down. The footwear was way beyond repair so I needed to find some new ones. In Mexico City it seems that anything not nailed down is libel to be robbed. My new £20 pumps had a security tag on both shoes and they then required a security guard inspection on exit from the shop, who signed my receipt to confirm that everything was above board.
There weren’t many out for food tonight. Most people had filled their boots at the all-you-can-eat buffet this afternoon. Incidentally one of the options at the buffet was rabbit head stew. That’s not a misprint, the stew really contained the heads of rabbits. I only noticed this after poking it around my plate having not been able to find any meat on the bones. From the angle it was now sitting, a rabbit head was looking right at me! Anyway, on account of being a bit of a fat git I still fancied something to eat that evening. The restaurant recommend to us by tour guide Mark was shut. This seemed to be common with almost every other food and drink establishment in Mexico City on a Sunday night. After wandering around for a while looking for some authentic Mexican food we stumbled on an open Italian restaurant. Despite the Four Cheese Pizza containing grapes, it was actually quite nice, albeit not particularly Mexican. A funny story also occurred this evening involving Mark. I don’t want to go into details. If his boss sees this, it’s nothing major, illegal, dodgy or wrong in any way! Just slightly amusing if not a little awkward.