Read This!

Kudos to The New York Times for running Mark Sundeen’s excellent article Ignoring the Warnings for a Honeymoon in Mexico. Read it! I love the brisk pace, the honesty, and the way he captures the flavor of adventure in Mexico. Also this great advice pretty much sums up my theory of travel: “If my hosts turned out to be captors, my fear would do no good. And if they turned out to be friends, well then, my fear would be […]

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San Pancho Sunset

San Pancho, Nayarit:  Last week I was crumbling cheese for spaghetti and looked out the kitchen window.  The beach is on the open ocean and the surf is too rough for swimming.   But San Pancho was a very friendly town, and we all had a great time visiting with friends and listening to music.

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Folk Art Car

                  Two Huichol families—the Bautistas from Jalisco and the Ortiz from Nayarit—spent 9,000 hours adhering more than two million beads to the exterior of a 1990 Volkswagen Beetle. The car is called the Vochol. Yes, that’s a combination of “Vocho” a and “Huichol.” Though I’m pretty sure the guy in the Smithsonian video is wrong when he says that “vocho” is a Huichol word! note: images courtesy of Museo de Arte Popular

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Book Review: Alcohol in Ancient Mexico

I am not a big online shopper and I rarely have spare money, but there was no way I could restrain myself from ordering a book called Alcohol in Ancient Mexico. I’m sorry, but even I can’t actually come up with a title better aimed to entrap me. Cheese in Ancient Mexico comes close, but would of course have to be a fantasy, since obviously dairy products were not a part of the ancient Mexican diet. Not to, uh, sound […]

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Road Notes–Nayarit/Sinaloa

Rich stares longingly at painted bottle of Pacifico.

The libre from Tepic to Mazatlan is unusually good. Driving through Culiacan was as awful as I remembered. Next time we will bite the bullet and take the cuota bypass. For some reason the “libre” from Culiacan to Los Mochis charges occasional 20 peso tolls. After our night at the Bel Mar in Mazatlan, we hit the road, hoping to make it to Alamos in time to camp for the night. However, the sun started to drop over Los Mochis. […]

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A Dead Language?

Two huichol indian women in traditional costume.

Mexico has an unusually rich tapestry of language, and the array of native dialects is dizzying. When I was growing up in Mexico, many of the indigenous people we encountered spoke Spanish as a second language, a trait that’s less common now. I spent a chunk of my childhood hanging around with an extended family of Huicholes and got to witness the way a native language dwindles. The matriarch, Guadalupe, was bilingual in Spanish and Huichol; her niece Maria Feliz, […]

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