Metro Daily

Holy guacamole, Mexico City’s metro is a behemoth. Twelve lines, 201 kilometers (almost 125 miles) of track, roughly 1.5 million daily riders. On a normal day I ride the metro anywhere from two to eight times. I should rephrase that to say, I ride it at least twice daily, but seldom have less than one transfer in each direction.

The metro first opened in 1969, with Linea 1 running from Observatorio station in the west to Pantitlán station in the east. The newest line, Linea 12, opened last November (as if to welcome me to my new home). I don’t know if plans exist to lay new track or expand existing routes (expansion is greatly needed) but I know this much: the metro is cheap, efficient, crowded, hot, smelly, safe, and – every once in a great while – fun.

Each line has its own personality. I have ridden every line except for Lines A and B, neither of which serve any points of interest for yours truly, and both of which pass through some rather dodgy places. Below is my attempt at capturing what a typical ride is like, using Metro Line 2 as my point of origin. This blog is also an attempt at comedy writing, so if it all sounds a bit too negative I’d remind you that the best comedians are often the most cynical ones. Here goes:

Continue reading “Metro Daily”

Top Ten Mexico City

I love top ten lists. Call me a geek if you want, it’s okay. Whatever the list, if it’s a top ten something, there’s a good chance I’ll read it. I probably have read it. Top ten Presidential quotes. Top ten “Seinfeld” episodes. Top ten ballparks. Top ten Chicago hot dog shacks. Top ten one-hit wonders (yes, 80’s emo band A-ha is in there). Top ten movies of the year. Top ten movies by genre.

And don’t even get me started on travel top ten lists. Lonely Planet has dozens of them. Travel + Leisure has dozens more. From “Top Ten Places to Ring in the New Year” to “Top Ten Multi-Day Hikes” to “Top Ten Places for Wildlife Watching,” you really can pick your poison. (Note: If I named any of those without crediting the actual publication in which they appeared, please accept my apologies. I really just pulled ‘em out of thin air.)

For my blogging (and your reading) pleasure, here’s my own top ten list – city-specific, to keep the list manageable.

Continue reading “Top Ten Mexico City”

Seriously, What’s the Problem?

I read a terrific CNN blog entry Wednesday about America’s (and the world’s, but mostly America’s) misconceptions about Mexico, their muyyy complicated neighbor to the south. The link is below:

I wanted to digest the article for a day or two before offering my own opinion. I encourage you to read it yourself. It is insightful and generally accurate, although I partially disagree with one of author Ravi Agrawal’s major points. He comments that the BRIC countries of Brazil, Russia, India, and China should make way for four other, less-respected, faster-rising countries: Mexico, Indonesia, Turkey, and South Korea. A well-intended observation, but he’s being too generous with some of the aforementioned countries – and not generous enough with others.

Continue reading “Seriously, What’s the Problem?”