Guadalajara Day 1

Travelling was long and tiring. It has been hard to adjust to the different time zones and jetlag. The first day was torture as we had to force ourselves to keep awake to allow us to fit in into the right time zone. Damien had arranged different tours and activities around the hotel to help keep us awake. It’s called the stay awake tour. We walked to the central area and ate late breakfast. Not surprisingly, we did not understand the Spanish menu and all the food was Mexican. It was a good introduction to the Mexican culture. It was there that we experienced our first language barrier problem. Thankfully Uncle William, Tim’s father, knew enough Spanish to get us through our meal. Thus, preventing us from starving within our first few hours in the wonderful city of Mexico. After breakfast, we went to see the cathedral nearby. The cathedral was magnificent. The art work in it showed how close the Mexicans hold their religion to their hearts. The mesmerising glass paintings on the ceiling, was something that not many of us had seen before. It definitely caught our eye. We even joked about taking some of it back with us to Singapore.

We later attempted to enter a museum but we were unable to enter it. However we did manage to spend a great deal of time in the souvenir shop where we bought many post cards. After that, we walked on to a parade square where a carnival was taking place. The whole square was bustling with locals and tourist. There were tents set up and old traditional games were being played. One of which was skipping. 2 of the volunteers for the carnival would swing a long rope and participants had to run in and skip along with the tempo of the rope. The tricky part is that they would increase the speed of the rope tremendously each round. To such an extent that surviving more than 5 turns in the rope was amazing. Being the only people in red track suits with “Singapore Diving” written across our backs, it was no surprise that all of us were asked in take part in it. We think the carnival was to commemorate the games that older generations use to participate in. Now in the fast paced world, we tend to get caught up our work and different technologies such as the handphones, laptops, iphones and mp3 players. Celebrations like these are not what you experience in Singapore so we found it very refreshing. We continued our tour into the markets in central area. We had decided on the plane that we would buy sumburos and cowboy hats, so that was our mission as we sauntered through the streets of Mexico. We did manage to find some shops that sold what we were looking for. However, the cost of everything took us by surprise-we had imagined everything to be cheaper. Thankfully we are Singaporeans, so we were all well experienced at bargaining.

We ended off our day at Wallmart, a supermarket near out hotel. We went around looking for adapters, water and other necessaries. We were all walking zombies except Orla who didn’t seem as though she would collapse any moment. We were all trying to catch whatever nap we could even if it was squatting behind a shelf to shield yourself from Orla’s view. Tim and Damien fell asleep in the trolley while pushing it-that’s how tired we were. Back at the hotel, with Orla constantly waking us up when we dozed off, we finally went to bed at 8pm Mexico time.

Written by Chloe,Myra and Timothy

~ by Singapore Diving on March 9, 2010.

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