Thursday, June 15, 2006
Tomorrow's the big game! Kind of. Mexico against Angola in the World Cup; Mexico shouldn't have too much trouble beating them. Getting back to today, after a full day of doing pretty much nothing I decided around 5:00 to go downtown to the Santo Domingo cathedral (I don't think I've mentioned it before, but in English that would be the Cathedral of Saint Sunday). Anyway, my thoughts during this little excursion were that I'm getting to be very good at getting around by myself for hardly any money. Round trip anywhere in the city if I stick with one bus each way is just sixty five cents or so. No one ever seems to want to go with me, though, but I don't really need anyone with me. :) :) It's great to feel this kind of independence... Do pretty much what I want when I want!
On the bus ride there we passed within about two blocks of the Zocalo, so I could kind of see what was going on there. From the radio reports I had heard about I thought that the Zocalo would be relatively empty and quiet, but I saw a number of tarps down there where teachers were probably hanging out. Once I got to Santo Domingo, I looked down the pedestrian walking street that goes from the Cathedral to the Zocalo, and I saw quite a few tarps that way, too. Even though I didn't get any closer, I'm pretty sure the teachers are still there but are also very peaceful right now.
I passed a nice few hours at the Italian Coffee Company shop right across the walking street from Santo Domingo. I brought a book and my camera so I could relax there for a while and try to get some nice pictures of Santo Domingo. The late afternoon light is the best for pictures. I got an iced coffee and headed up the narrow wooden stairs to the upper story. Soon after I sat down some people left, leaving their window table open. From there I could reach through the cast iron bars and take some pictures of Santo Domingo or just sit and read with a nice breeze blowing in. There is nothing like the atmosphere of a good coffee shop, especially one with a colonial cathedral across the street and, even closer, trees with beautiful orange flowers adding some bright color to the scene. All in all I had a very nice, relaxing time. On the bus ride back I did my good deed for the day and gave up my seat to an older lady who was standing. I only wish I had let her have it sooner; I waited for a couple of blocks to offer it to her. Oh, well.
First pic: Just up the street a little bit from Santo Domingo, away from the Zocalo. The building on the left is part of the convent-turned-museum attached to Santo Domingo. The trees with the orange flowers are on the square in front of the cathedral. Down right at the end of the street where you can still kind of see are some tarps the teachers have set up. If you click on the picture to get the full size image you can see it better.
Second pic: Part of Santo Domingo and some of the trees out the window where I sat. I think that most of my pictures that include the bars over the window turned out rather poorly. I guess it was a bad idea.
Third pic: All of the cathedral (which doesn't include the museum or botanical gardens that are a part of the complex). This time through the bars of the window. In my opinion this picture is just as good as the pictures on the postcards. I guess late afternoon is best for these pictures. And being across the square in front of the cathedral and across the street gives a better picture of the whole thing. Especially since I was on the second floor, so the people on the ground didn't get in the way. Oh, and I didn't touch this up on the computer in any way, shape, or form. (I'm pretty proud of this picture, if you couldn't tell :) :)