Puebla #3: Miscellany

We were only in Puebla two and a half days, which really isn’t fair to Mexico’s fourth-largest city. (Did you know that? I did not. After DF, Guadalajara and Monterrey.)

We were pretty fried on Sunday, our first day out, and overwhelmed because it was Palm Sunday. The streets were packed with people.

Getcher palm doodads here!
Getcher palm doodads here!

We wandered around pretty aimlessly and happened across equally random treats, such as this hot dog situation:

What the heck?
I don’t know what that is in the foreground. We’re talking about the thing in the guy’s hand.

It was, as far as I could make out, a hot dog dipped in molten cheese then wrapped in an eggroll wrapper, and then wrapped in bacon, and then deep-fried.

That's just rank.
Peter swore it was one of the best things he ate on our trip. And he wasn’t even high.

Please don’t extrapolate about Puebla cuisine from this; I think it’s a one-off invention of the guy who runs the stand.

Not far away was weirdness of another sort, a veritable garden of kiddie rides:

Photo by Peter. Actually, let's just say all of these are.
Photo by Peter. Actually, let’s just say all of these are.

We stopped at the railroad museum (doesn’t everyone make that their first stop in a new city?) and cried over the oh-so-recent death of Mexico’s passenger rail. (Our friend Jim took the train from Texas to San Miguel de Allende for a high school trip in the 80s! Argh!)

This is the style of travel to which I am accustomed, thankyouverymuch.
This is the style of travel to which I am accustomed, thankyouverymuch.

Later that day, we met up with some real live poblanos, who were kind enough to make sure we saw the Rosary Chapel, one of the city’s major attractions. Which we almost certainly would have missed otherwise, because it’s off the side in one of the churches that was mobbed with Palm-Sunday-enjoyers.

Click to enlarge. Really. It’s worth it.

We also went to the Museo Amparo, recently reopened after a big renovation. In fact, it’s still not totally finished. But the rooftop cafe was a great place to get up close and personal with all the church domes in the city.

Modern museum on the right; colonial city on the left.
Modern museum on the right; colonial city on the left.

Aaaand then, back to our regularly scheduled aimless wandering.

Park life
This park was so committed to its jacarandas that all the benches and trash cans and everything were painted purple.
Emo bus driver. As Peter pointed out, there's a lot of heart-ripping-out imagery in a country that historically did heart-ripping-out.
With all the heart-ripping-out imagery, are emos just updated Aztecs?
Jesus loves neon, this we know.
Jesus loves neon, this we know.

Finally, to end this post on an educational note, did you know Chia Pets are, like, a real thing? Here, look:

An 'altar of sorrows,' commemorating the Virgin Mary's loss of her son.
An ‘altar of sorrows,’ commemorating the Virgin Mary’s loss of her son.
This time I did the zooming for you. Check it!
This time I did the zooming for you. Check it!

As a display at the Museo Amparo helpfully explained, sprouts and wheatgrass are placed on the altar, to represent rebirth. And little hollow clay turtles and sheep, covered in chia seeds, are a way of doing that. It was hard to tell from the phrasing whether this is something that’s been going on for centuries, or if Mexicans just like Chia Pets, and incorporated them into the altar? Chia Pets were originally made in Mexico, says-Wikipedia-so-it-must-be-true, which suggests the former.

Cool, right? Who knows what I’ll learn on my next (hopefully longer!) visit to Puebla…

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