Friday, March 20, 2009

December 17 - Off to Oaxaca

After our trip to Louisiana, we quickly dashed back to Mexico to put things in order and repack. On December 17, we were off to Oaxaca and points east and south to celebrate Christmas with the Drapers, our dear friends from Washington via Alaska.

Flying from Monterrey to Oaxaca City had a little different twist. How often can one expect to take a flight that costs less than the applicable tax? Thanks to an airfare war here in Mexico, we had just that experience. Round trip for the two of us was less than $200.00 and most of the cost was tax.

For once the best laid plans actually worked out and we met the Drapers at the Oaxaca airport just like clockwork. A taxi ride to El Centro and we were off and running on our Southern Mexico adventure.

We made the most of our time in Oaxaca City exploring the city with the requisite markets, museums, restaurants, coffee shops, bars, churches, and art galleries. Jim and I even took in a solid hour of traditional and contemporary Mexican Christmas music presented by a very talented children's orchestra and chior at La Iglesia de San Augustin. And, of course, there were the side trips: Monte Alban, Cuilapan, Coyotepec, San Martin Tilcajete and Teotitlan de Valle.

After five nights in Oaxaca City at the Hotel Trebol just off the central square, we rented a car and drove to the Mayan ruins at Palanque which we toured the day after Christmas. Upon returning to Oaxaca we had another day with Jim and Rori before they flew home. Stanley and I took the bus to Pochutla and enjoyed five days at Playa Zipolite before returning to Oaxaca once more for a final night at the Hotel Trebol and our flight back to Monterrey.

Whew! Just thinking about it now makes me tired, but at the time, there was so much adrenaline and excitement I don’t even remember thinking about being tired. This was the trip we had planned for the previous winter. It was postponed because of issues with my heart. After a year of being grateful for normal rhythm, this journey had special significance.