Last week I had a layover in Mexico City. Now, in preface, I'm not fond at all of international travel. You have to worry about the water, the food, the language differences. I really don't care about different cultures--understanding my own is complex enough. On past MEX layovers, I've ventured out to a couple of restaurants near the hotel, but other than that, haven't done much.
However, this layover was different. We got directed to an artisan market, which was interesting. Wife of Azlib. would have loved the place. I'm sure she'd have decided to scrap all our current home decorating themes and gone completely Rustic Mexican. Something like this ran the equivalent of $40 instead of the $245 shown at an American re-seller. I was unsuccessful in finding a new brown leather belt to use for Concealed Carry, but I did manage to pick up a necklace and earring set for Valentines Day. I'm finally a hero in the romance department.
We also ran across a Mexican bakery which had good (and cheap!) baked goods. Most other cultures don't have nearly the sweet tooth that Americans have, so we aren't talking about Cinnabon or Dunkin' Donuts here, but good none-the-less. All told, I spent $1.30 on far too many baked goods for one guy to consume.
On my way back, the walk took me past some sort of Federal Police building. As I walked past, I tried to observe (but not too closely) the Federales. Their appearance doesn't exactly inspire confidence in their abilities or their professionalism, but it is a Third World country, so one can't expect too much. One difference between these guys and American LEOs is that all of the armed police that I saw were carrying wheel guns of some sort. I got a kick out of a couple of the guys who carried their extra ammo on old-fashioned cartridge holders...one guy had three different kinds of ammo in his 12 or so cartridge loops.
But the funniest thing had to be their motorcycle cops. It was lunchtime as I was walking back, and a couple of intersections had a motorcycle cop sitting there watching the traffic move through. It probably would have been too provacative for me to do so, but I sort of wished that I'd have had my camera with me. These guys, in addition to their Third-World-Cop authority attitude, and the I'm-A-Different-Breed attitude seen in motorcycle cops everywhere, wore spurs on their tall motorcycle-boots.