Exploring Mexico

Images of Mexico Part VII

Photographs and Text by John Todd, Jr.

Note: Mexico is a big country. It can only be described as a sensual mosaic of different scenes of people and landscapes. Soft pastels and hard colors are seen and felt in the emotions of the people.

Beautiful as the soft music of a romantic trio in the evening or a hard ranchera. The laughter of a people who love their children and celebrate life in the streets and their homes.

If you look at a map of Mexico and the US, you might describe the US as the mind and logic, and Mexico is the heart.

Puebla at Dawn
Puebla at Dawn
Puebla, Puebla
Puebla at Dawn
Early in the morning from the full length window of my bedroom at the the swanky Hotel Mesón de los Angeles.

On the outskirts of Puebla is El Popo and last nights moon going down.

Our very first morning in Puebla. And what a beautiful day to start. I had no idea how beautiful the city is!
PlayaVicenteDancer
Dancers
Playa Vicente, Veracruz
Playa Vicente Dance
Playa Vicente is south of Tuxtepec, Oaxaca and also south of the Papaloapan river.

Playa means beach, and about the only beach there is a sand bar on the river below the town.

It´s mostly cattle country surrounded by very green fertile tropical farmlands on the fringes of civilization.
BurgerQueen
Burger Queen
Zacatecas, Zac.
Burger Queen
Mexicans have a sense of humor which sometimes must come close to patent infringement.

In Veracruz a small hamburger restaurant used the arches of McDonald´s, until McDonald´s came to town.

Downtown Zacatecas is wonderful, especially on a cool Sunday evening.

The city has been restored to it´s old magnificent dignity as a silver mining town with narrow cobblestoned streets made for walking.

You can see why Zacatecas was declared a World Heritage City by the United Nations.
3 Indians
3 Indians and a Dog
Putla, Oaxaca
3 Indians and a Dog
The Indians of Oaxaca have cute poses, but don´t like having their pictures taken.

Taking pictures of the people are a real challenge.

We were driving north of Pinotepa Nacional through the little town of Putla where the Indian women wear this simple dress with a simple lined design.
Old Vendor
Old Vendor
Zacatecas, Zac.
Old Vendor
You see "vendedores ambulantes" everywhere in Mexico.

On Sunday evenings I have meet people who had money and didn´t need to be working with a stand with something for sale, just to enjoy the atmosphere of the Sunday crowds.
Cheese
Cheese and Chile
Veracruz, Ver.
Cheese and Chile
The trimmings for tacos de carnitas and chicharrones.

One Saturday morning I was invited to the home of a family to receive friends from out of town for a 9 o´clock breakfast and ate too much.

I have never seen anything like this in any Mexican restaurant.
Chicharron
Chicharrones
Veracruz, Ver.
Chicharrones!
Waiting for the guests to arrive. And these are the Chicharrones. The red hot sauce is fresh ground Chile de Arbol.

First the chiles are cooked in a frying pan until they swell and are really dry, filling the house with a penetrating smell that leaves everybody sneezing and running for the door.

Then the chiles are ground into a powder in the blender, then back to the frying pan and mixed with cooking oil and spices.

While it´s very hot, it adds a very special taste to Chicarrones and make-your-own taco with a tortilla.

I only use a couple of droplets.
Ojos Chinos
Ojos Chinos
Veracruz, Ver.
"Ojos Chinos"
"Ojos Chinos", or Chinese Eyes are the themes of many Mexican songs.

And the charm of these particularly stood out at a large gathering at the next table.
Ojos Chinos
Ojos Chinos
Veracruz, Ver.
Ojos Chinos
"Ojos Chinos", or Chinese Eyes are the themes of many Mexican songs.

And the charm of these particularly stood out at a large gathering at the next table.
Altar
El Altar
Orizaba, Veracruz
El Altar
Colonial Mexico remains part of the present in its churches.
El Pico
El Pico de Orizaba
Tehuacan, Puebla
El Pico de Orizaba
Another view of El Pico de Orizaba early in the morning.

Back to the Photos Section