The volcano Popocatepetl in the state of Puebla

                                          I got up before dawn, as is my unfortunate habit—this time spurred on by typical rancho shenanigans. First a chorus of crowing roosters, which inspired a hundred dogs to begin barking, followed by a mysterious loudspeaker advertizing freshly killed chickens. As is often the case in the Mexican countryside, I couldn’t tell where any of this noise was coming […]

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Little Italy in Mexico?

Grilled chicken and fresh cheese from the state of Puebla.

“I smell fresh tortillas,” I said, with the feverish conviction of a bloodhound. Rich, Gina, and I were straggling down the edge of the highway, cooking in the sun and looking for a lunch spot to kill some time while the guy at the nearby taller changed Miss Lousiane’s oil. We approached a roadside restaurant, which was painted bright green and attended by a smiling proprietor of a very old-school breed: long braids, a crisp checked apron over her flowered […]

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And then the French invaded…(Happy Cinco de Mayo!)

  I laugh every time I think about the French invading Mexico. I know I shouldn’t—a lot of people died in the “intervention,” which began when Napoleon III used Mexico’s debt to France as a pretext for invasion. Napoleon III made the mistake of listening to conniving Mexican aristocrats who had insinuated themselves into the French court. The Mexicans in France wanted to see Benito Juarez’s democracy crushed and the return of their former power and property. To that end, […]

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