Saturday, August 19, 2017

Chihuahua - Even Time For Sightseeing

Layover in Monterrey dreaming of my escape home!

It was definitely a long week but very productive.   I worked in several schools as well as an event in a hotel that included three sessions.   Lots of flights and even one that brought me home to Monterrey only to have it be a stopover on my way to Queretaro.  That was weird.  When I get to the Monterrey airport I'm ready to pay the parking and head home.   While I was waiting I thought about the car sitting there in the long-term parking and I was just 300 meters away.  I was ready to jump ship and that was only on Wednesday night.  

In Chihuahua this week, it is all about helping teachers prepare for the new school year.  I had to assure that they had all of their resource materials, online platform licenses and had some idea of how to write their lesson plans.   A good part of it was getting them to relax understand this how we do things in education.  Some schools were a complete mess as they were remodeling and others, such as those run by religious orders (nuns), were tip-top and ready to roll.  

Throughout all of this my coworker in Chihuahua was a great tour guide and host.   On Tuesday we had an event in Delicias which is about an hour from Chihuahua.   It was raining hard when we arrived and he called ahead so that the guard would meet me at the car with an umbrella.   Great school, great teachers and believe it or not, two of them had spent many years as children growing up in Kansas City.  That was a first for me.   

Spill over at Presa de las Virgenes, Rosales, Chih.

Presa de las Virgenes, Rosales, Chih.

The hills of Chihuahua 

After, we took a drive to Presa de las Virgines in Rosales about 20 minutes outside Delicias.  We had had some heavy rains and the lake was full not to mention the spillover.   It is a great route to take for boondockers heading to Parral de Hidalgo.   Excellent two-lane road that winds up through rolling hills.   At the presa, there are places to boondock that are secure.  Obviously, on weekends and holidays the place is packed with boats, ski doos and fishermen.   We can add that to the list of places.

Finishing early on Wednesday, my coworker took me out for a great shrimp lunch, a la diabla.  He said he had a surprise for me after we finished our lunch and wouldn't tell me.   Big surprise.  We visited the quinta of Pancho Villa which is near the downtown area.   It is now a federal monument and managed by the military.   The house is as original as it was when Pancho's wife passed away in 1981.   There is an underground tunnel that takes you down to the main plaza downtown and it was used on several occasions by Villa riding on horseback.  

I'm not a fan of the Mexican Revolution.  I think it is what has put us in the position we are in today, or I should say finally working our way out of.  I'm not an historian but I am a fan of history and reading about it.   As stated before, over 200 revolutions worldwide in the last 300 years and only three were of any true value or change.   The Mexican Revolution brought about the nationalization of banks, oil companies and factories and the rise of unions that today keep the members poor while the leaders suck up all the wealth.   As you can see with Pemex, all that is imploding and we are seeing change.   Take much care with MORENA (Movimiento Regeneracion Nacional) which is a socialist party gaining ground in Mexico under the guise of Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO), an ally and follower of Castro, Chavez and Maduro.   Good thing Bernie didn't win as he would have fueled the fire here in Mexico.   I digress. 

The history of Pancho Villa is very interesting and most of all it is really a part of modern history that we can feel, touch and see.   His wife (one of many but the one who represented him after his death and kept his patrimony) was quite a celebrity with U.S. actors, politicians and presidents, always on the front pages and in the news.  

This hotel in Celaya is near three Japanese-owned factories.  Many Japanese work here off and on.  The hotel prepares a special breakfast buffet for them along as well as the Mexican buffet.  

Ending up at my hotel in Queretaro after 12:30 a.m., I was able to get some rest before work.  Soon after that, I was whisked off to Celeya which is not a pretty town.   On this trip, we were on a budget and that included budget hotels.   I stayed in City Express but to my surprise, they are on a campaign to upgrade their hotels to suites.   Clean lines, simple but very well done.   I wasn't happy at first with my reservations but soon found out they were comfortable.  Nothing worse though than having to put on a pair of pants at 5:30 in the morning to go to the lobby for coffee.  Arghhh!

Home now and all is well.  It appears I'll be traveling quite a bit this fall in the U.S. working in high schools and my trip to South America.   


  1. Can't count the number of times I watched Poncho Villa cowboy movies (in black and white) when I was a child. In the movies, he was portrayed as a Robin Hood to the Mexican people and would cross the border into the US to rob some banks, and return to Mexico to distribute his loot to the poor and needy, you know, something simple an idealistic child could understand. We never saw blood and gore and dead cowboys, just cowboys falling off their horses after they were shot.

  2. Interesting report. Great read. Thanks!

  3. When I used to travel for business, people thought I was so lucky and how glamorous it was to do so. Not a single hotel room was memorable. Not even the ritzy ones! Thanks for the pictures. They are always interesting!