First, we had to find a bank machine and get some more Mexican cash. HSBC machines have always worked for us, so I looked up where the bank was and we walked over there. Sure enough, it worked with no problems.
We have to pay our rent for the week. The place we're staying has several rental apartments and some are smaller than others. We wanted one of the smaller ones at around 2,000 pesos ($166) for the week but they were unavailable when we made the booking. So we were put in a larger one at 2,450 ($203) per week and we asked if we could move if one of the smaller ones became available during our stay. Sure enough, the manager Susana came by yesterday and advised that we could move this morning after 11:00am, so we're glad to be able to save a few pesos and don't mind making the move.
So far, we're really happy with the apartments and the people running the place. They have a website at http://www.oaxacapartments.com/ and they're located right downtown. However don't trust their reservation or availability software...make the phone call or send them an email to confirm.
Some of the central area has streets closed to traffic.
The bank entrance had these huge old wooden doors.
Templo del Patricinio
This old church has a rocky history. It's origins aren't confirmed although they think it was built nearby around 1794 and then destroyed in a huge earthquake in 1795 and rebuilt at it's current location. Since the 1850's it's been renovated twice, damaged twice again by major eathquakes, abandoned for fifty years, renovated again, but here it sits, still looking pretty dilapidated.
It also has some big old wooden doors, but they are deteriorating.
Another nearby church, the Guadelupe Sanctuary was inaugurated in 1644.
As we were wandering around, we heard music and headed over to the Templo de Santo Domingo. We want to see the interior of this church, but most churches are closed between 1:00pm to 4:00pm and it was now about 1:15pm. Turns out that a wedding had just finished, and the celebrating was just beginning!
When a big enough crowd had gathered, the party continued with a procession down the street...music, and dancing and fireworks! We watched the fun for a while.
Then we headed to the market. We hadn't had lunch yet so we were getting hungry and the food stalls at the markets are usually pretty cheap. We went to the big central market (Mercado de Abastos). It's huge, and it's actually pretty easy to get lost in there! We found a stall where they were making tlayudas. Large thin corn flour tortillas, folded over with meat and lettuce and peppers and sauce. Delicious. They're quite large, so Ruth and I shared one for 40 pesos ($3.32).
As we were finished eating, a lady came by selling fried grasshoppers. This is definitely a Oaxacan delicacy and strangely enough, Ruth wanted to try them. The lady offered us one each and as we snacked on them she explained that she had baby ones (they almost look like ants!) as well as adults. We ended up buying a small bag of each for 5 pesos (43 cents) per bag.
Ruth, talking with the lady selling fried grasshoppers.
What do they taste like? Well, they're cooked with lots of chili powder and lime juice so we wonder if that's really to mask the unsavory flavor of the grasshoppers, or if it just spices them up a little. It's a different flavor for sure, but not one that I either like or dislike. They went down okay with a beer later that afternoon!
Not sure what's on the agenda for today, but maybe we'll walk down to the river and see what's going on there. The sun is shining and it's starting to warm up!