mexican photo business

22 09 2009

shots from a fabulous country.

mex lomo doors

'downtown' beach. puerto

'downtown' beach. puerto

"who wants an alcoholic kid?" - i love the happy skull.

"who wants an alcoholic kid?" - i love the happy skull.

LOVE the taco girls

LOVE the taco girls

monte albarn ruins. excuse the crap stitching.

monte albarn ruins. excuse the crap stitching.

now THAT'S a stacked bbq... check the smiles.

now THAT'S a stacked bbq... check the smiles.

mex fence

colourful oaxaqueno church addition

colourful oaxaqueno church addition

a lot of volkswagens in mexico. rad.

a lot of volkswagens in mexico. rad.

mex oaxaca mkt

monte albarn -aztec ruins near oaxaca

monte albarn -aztec ruins near oaxaca





Mex2: Chacahua y Oaxaca

22 09 2009
cruising thru the mangroves en route to chacahua

cruising thru the mangroves en route to chacahua

chacahua overview from the lighthouse

chacahua lineup

Cha-Cha-Chacahua

Walk 10 minutes to the collectivo taxi.

Hop a cab to Rio Grande.

Public bus to Zapotolito.

Fishing boat thru the mangroves to the rivermouth.

Bienvenido a Chacahua.
Chacahua is where I go to get away from the hectic pace of Puerto Escondido.

A national park situated on a thin strip of palm-strewn coast, the ‘town’ is best accessed by boat which dumps you right at the entrance to the tidal lagoon – clear waters filled with boas, crocs and more.

It’s also home to the hollowest, funnest, least-crowded right-hand point break I know of, and it’s offshore ALL DAY. Dios mio.

right-handers over sand. fun, much?

right-handers over sand. fun, much?

This year did see a few more people (fleeing the comp also) and funky banks, but warm water barrels in board shorts with a bunch of your mates while Mexican fisherman zip past thru the rivermouth still takes some beating.

The sealife there is incredible – turtles bobbing round the lineup, schools of baitfish being harassed by seabirds all day every day, long toms (big garfish) apparently spearing the odd local in the neck. Nuts.

Swim across the river and walk round the cliffs and there is also 50-odd kms of beachbreaks to explore, usually bigger and less perfect, but absolutely deserted.

When it’s flat, it’s hotter than hell and dull dull dull, but we raided some the fish market for a bbq, climbed some hills, had some fun.

One of my fave spots in the world.

our barbeque crew - aus, finnish, hawaiian, polish, venezuelan. ha!

our barbeque crew - aus, finnish, hawaiian, polish, venezuelan. ha!

Oaxaca City

There’s a lot to like about Oaxaca.

For one thing its 1500m elevation makes it nice and cool, and thus easy to trot around during the day.

It’s also pretty compact and simple to negotiate using the many churches as landmarks – easy to spot as nothing in town is built more than two stories high – earthquakes!

mex kidThe state capital is an artistic hub for the many creative types in nearby villages so art cafes and galleries abound, alongside the usual random street processions and brass bands that seem to spring up everywhere in Mexico.

The city itself was founded by Spanish settlers not long after Cortes’ conquest but there are ruins nearby at Monte Albarn and Mitla, dating back to about 500AD.

I also discovered the world’s maddest antique shop, a dusty maze of crazy artworks, ancient wooden masks, mouldy books and a couple of bowling pins. Too good.

shoeshine dudes, oax.

shoeshine dudes, oax.

Poetas de la poes.

On the second night in Oaxaca I headed out with Jesse and a bunch of his mates from Spanish school (the teachers, fortuitously).

We hit a cool-looking café that was hosting a ‘jam night’, but just two songs in, it became apparent there would also be some poetry reading. Fuck.

The first twat, sorry, poet, was more than a little obsessed with sex, so I learned a few choice erotic terms, although even the Spanish maestros said his poems made little sense.

At least he projected his word-porn on the wall so I could read along.

Next up though, were a procession of floppy-haired 40-something pseudo intellectuals who had the audacity to read from various books.

Now, I’m no poetry-reading expert, but isn’t the idea to present your own work?

Any fool can get up there and read some Keats or a bit of AB Patterson.

Needless to say there wasn’t enough Indio beer in all of Mexico to make me enjoy the experience, even if I were somehow able to understand these chumps.

It did remind me of when I attended an algebra class in Laos – vaguely interesting for about eight seconds but ultimately kind of stupid.

i would have happily purchased every item in this amazing store

i would have happily purchased every item in this amazing store





Mex1: the hidden port

28 08 2009
tube hunters

tube hunters

Random bits and pieces from a trip to Puerto Escondido, Chacahua and Oaxaca. Because I can’t be bothered writing a coherent, flowing account.

lambs to the slaughterInbound trip by the numbers:

Hours spent waiting for taxi in Boston = 0.75

Hours spent waiting to check-in at Boston airport = 2

Hours Boston flight was delayed due to fog = 2

Hours spent stuck in Houston due to missed connection = 21

Hours spent enjoying Houston = 1.5 (bought a sixpack).
Electrickery

One of the funniest moments occurred one evening when we headed out for a meal between torrential monsoon showers.

After dodging along under various awnings to reach our chosen spot, Dave ordered, then ducked off to the ATM for some cash.

At this point it was still pouring and none of us were wearing shoes. Dave soon returned, looking a little shaken.

Apparently he had stepped off the sidewalk into a puddle and felt his leg start to spasm. He then stepped in with his other foot which also gave way, before he realised he was being electrocuted.

After staggering clear of the killer puddle, he collapsed on the street and turned to see nearby shopkeepers not running to help, but falling over themselves with laughter.

We wore shoes a bit more after that.

heaven on a stick

heaven on a stick

Paleteria

Now, I just don’t think I could get by in Mexico without the Paleterias.

Forget the Cervecerias and even the Taquerias – Paletas win.

Here, the sweaty tourist can find ice-cold fruit drinks and fruity popsicles (paletas) in all manner of weird and wonderful tropical flavours, each for around a buck.

Coconut and cinnamon milk-drink was my preferred beverage and when it comes to the popsicles, well…mango is pretty good, as is lime, fresh coconut ain’t bad, but the king of the popsicles is guyanabana.

I don’t even know what it is, but it tastes great and it’s also fun to say.

Puerto proper

Now, when you book a surfing holiday to some exotic locale known worldwide for its thumping surf, it may pay to check who else is in town that week.

Somehow I had my two-week break coincide with the waiting-period for the 3-star Quik WQS comp in Puerto this year, a mistake I hope never to repeat.

The extra people in town were kind of fun. But when those same extra folk are 100 or so of the world’s best up-and-coming surfers, it’s less fun.

Those fuckers were all over everything that broke, from 3ft windswell to double-head closeouts and Puerto isn’t a wave where you want to be pushed into a less-than-favourable take-off point.

It’s still a great town though, heaps of fun travellers, cheap eats, cold beer, happy locals.

Ahhh Mexico, how I love thee  – let me count the ways…

flat day fun

flat day fun