Sunday, February 3, 2008

Guadalajara Centro

We drove the car downtown to the Cathredral Plaza today. We were advised to take the bus and subway but we thought since it was Sunday we would try driving. We armed ouselves with a couple of maps and headed out. The traffic was far better than it was when we arrived in Guadalajara on Friday but was still very heavy. We took Avenue Hidalgo and parked in the huge but almost empty underground parking under the Plaza. We walked and explored for about four hours and then headed back to the parking lot.

Tomorrow is Constitution Day here in Mexico and is a big holiday. They were setting up stages and hundreds of portable toilets so half the roads were closed off and when we exited the parking lot we had no idea where we were except we were pretty sure we were headed in the wrong direction. Street signs are very hard to see here and the city traffic moves steadily at about 20 Km/Hr faster than the posted speed of 50 and if you try slowing down at all you are blasted with horns and passed on the right and left at the same time!

We stopped at a light and were frantically searching the map for the street we were on. A nice new Jeep pulled up beside us and the driver asked if we were lost. He asked where we were going and we said we needed to find Avenue Lopez Mateos. He told us we were very far away from there, thought for a second and told us to follow him. He lead us through many streets at breakneck speed and finally we came to a sign telling us we were at Ave. Lopez Mateos. He pulled over and we stopped behind him. I thanked him and offered him some Pesos for gas but he just shrugged it off saying he lived nearby and was going home anyway. He said in excellent English, "I noticed two things. One, you were lost and two, you are not Americans. I had to help you." We told him we were Peace Loving Canadians who loved his Country and especially his City. We shook hands and we were on our way. He is typical of so many Mexicans we have met. We are going to have to start carrying some of our little Canadian Flag Lapel Pins for occasions like this. It would have been a perfect way to say "Gracias, Amigo".

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