Thursday, October 30, 2014
adventure comes knocking
Any day the hook for an essay comes knocking on my door, I count it lucky.
Last night, the three of us talked about striking out in the morning to see the coffee plantation at Cuzalapa during a drive to Villa Purificación. You know both sites -- having joined me on several previous trips (ticking me off; purity of sacrifice; putting the sore into sorry). I thought Christy should be introduced to a bit of colonial Mexico.
Because we are all in vacation mode, our morning was a bit slow. A nice breakfast whipped up in my fancy new kitchen. And a lazy float in the pool.
That is when our visitor arrived. I heard frantic scratching on the screen to the living room. While cleaning the house, I had discovered some mysterious spoor in that room. I had my theories. Now, I knew.
It was an iguana. What appeared to be a young one changing its skin color. The markings were almost serpentine. And it was so intent on getting beyond the screen, it allowed all of us to get quite close to it. Before it dashed off under the garage door.
Talk about symbolic. Adventure had come to us to let us know it was time to get moving. So, move we did.
Darrel and Christy are mountain people. So, I knew that a trip up through the foothills of the Sierra Madre would be a perfect fit for them.
Like most coastal areas of Pacific Mexico, there is a steady climb through stunning views back toward the coast until travelers reach a broad flat valley hemmed in by a series of mountains. In our case, the valley starts at La Huerta.
Cuzalapa is located in the hills of that valley. The coffee roasting center was closed when we arrived, but that did not stop us from hiking through the coffee trees. I had hoped to see them in flower this year, but we missed that. The green berries were just setting.
On my last trip to Cuzalapa, I was surprised to find fields of strewn boulders. Huge boulders. In this particular case, there was no possibility of clearing this portion of a field. So, the corn is planted around the rocks.
I have a theory why they are there. Up north, they would have been deposited by glaciers. But the Ice Age did not approach Mexico.
To me, they look like volcano bombs. The type of rocks that volcanoes throw out in eruptions. The Wicked Witch of the East could probably fully brief us on their dangers.
Our drive was also enlivened by wild flowers. They are not as showy as the flowers around San Miguel de Allende and Pátzcuaro, but they were beautiful -- nonetheless.
And Villa Purificación? We never made it there. Christy will have to wait for another visit to see our bit of colonial Mexico in this part of Jalisco.
But we did stop in Cuautitlán de García Barragán. The town is best known for its prize bulls. We now know it for its taco stand that served up what were most likely very ordinary tacos, but they tasted like ambrosia to three travelers.
All in all, it was a day filled with enough adventure for now.