Mexico City Day 5 Part 2

Continued from Mexico City Day 5 Part 1.

Aureola. No, not areola.

That’s a really odd shallow chair for a child.

This canon either got dropped or got hit by another cannon ball.

Gatling Gun! I want one, and I don’t even like guns.

That’s one mean beard. Looks extra funny since it’s on a marble bust.

Overlooking Chapultepec Park.

Back down the hill via trolley.

The park closes at 6. It’s a little bit past five, so everyone is heading home.

I need to head back to the hotel, get my luggage that they have on hold for me, and then head to another hotel in Santa Fe way West of Centro. Not looking forward to being stuck in this rush hour traffic.

El Ángel in the distance, a column built to celebrate Mexico’s Independence. Too bad I won’t have a chance to visit it this time.

I split up from JM and BM. I am heading back to hotel via subway, and they’ll be heading to Polanco to meet up with LG and CG.

It’s Friday afternoon. I see all these street side bars jamming music and people downing beers. Happy Hour!

Heh, I love the expression on this hippo’s face.

Plowing down the city.

Corn, I understand, but wait, are those poppy flowers?

Another bar with with loud music playing and packed to capacity. I wish I could jump in and start drinking beers too. Too bad I have to move to a different hotel. Sigh.

More bars here too.

I went to buy some water and saw this interesting looking can lid design. I wonder how this works? I bought one out of curiosity, and will be opening it later. These cans are also tallboys.

Got my stuff and had the hotel call a taxi. When I went to ask for a taxi, the concierge asked me if I want a regular taxi or one for tourists. What’s the difference? The tourist one is supposed to be nicer and safer, but a bit more expensive. The tourist taxi also charge a flat rate, and it’s 220 pesos to Santa Fe. Sure, why not, upgrade me. I am tired of dealing with taxi driver’s small time scam shenanigans.

My mini van taxi arrives.

My driver said that it’ll be about almost an hour’s drive to go to Santa Fe.

Sony Playstation posters all over the wall.

Posters I understand, but graffiti? Really? Now that I am looking at them more closely, I think these are also posters to resemble graffiti, since the paint all drips in the same way.

Reached Santa Fe, a wealthy newly developed suburb of Mexico City. The whole area is built around a giant mall. This building is dubbed the washing machine by the locals.

I see my hotel in the distance. It’s the tall building between the two red lights.

The giant mall that all of Santa Fe revolves around.

Here! A very different area from Centro for sure. Hopefully I’ll get a room with a view.

We arrive at the hotel, and pull up to the unloading area. I am looking through my wallet for money while the porter is unloading my luggage from the trunk. I hand over 520 to the driver expecting to get 300 back(flat rate of 220). Driver gives me incorrect change bacl. I told him it’s wrong. He says something to me. I don’t understand, can you repeat. I think he’s saying its 280 and not 220. No Motherfucker!!(I didn’t actually say that) The reason why I opted for the more expensive cab was so I didn’t have to deal with drivers ripping me off. There is a reason why it’s a flat rate. I can’t believe this is happening!! I won’t budge, and he insists on 280. I said, “It’s a set rate at 220 and that’s all I am paying.” As I said that, I take 300 from the fan of bills he’s holding in his hand and walk out of the cab. This is all too similar to my experience in Jaipur with that one fucking rickshaw driver. I am furious, and I don’t get mad easily!

I exited the cab and went with the porter pushing the bell cart with all my stuff on it. I am looking at the porter and shaking my head. He saw all of that go down too. As we were about to reach the elevators(the lobby is not on the ground floor), I looked at the bell cart. Where The Fuck Is My Backpack. You know, my backpack with my fucking passport, laptop, and other important items. FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK FUCK!!!!!!!!!

I asked the porter if he took out my backpack from the trunk along with all the other items. He said, no, he said that he didn’t see a backpack. What The Fuck!! The driver had told the porter that he had gotten everything when he unloaded the trunk. Fuck me!

I turn back around and the taxi has already driven away. Fuck! I ask the porter to call Hampton Inn, which called the taxi for me. And coincidentally, RT(the groom) shows up at the hotel with his parents at this very moment. I must have looked like a zombie when I met and greeted his parents for the first time. RT goes into action and starts speaking Spanish to the porter to expedite the process of recovering my backpack.

Since I had Hampton Inn call a cab for me, I asked them to call the dispatcher and try to reach the driver so that he can turn around with my backpack that’s still in the trunk. Well, Hampton Inn calls the dispatch, the dispatch calls the driver, and the driver does not pick up. Fuck me! My stomach is sinking. The driver who just tried to fuck me over is now in possession of my backpack, and he is driving through Mexico City with it. Ugh. Well, now is his chance to seek revenge on me, since I was unwilling to bend over and grab my ankles for him earlier and have him rip me off.

The bell cart with the missing backpack. Fucking idiot porter. How could he miss a full sized backpack!! Ugh!!

The front desk from Intercontinental keeps on calling Hampton Inn, but they get no response from the driver. Finally, Intercontinental front desk gets the taxi dispatch company’s contact from Hampton Inn so that they can call and check on the status of the driver directly. This is all that links between my backpack and I – a couple of names, a cab number, and a phone number. Fuck me!

I decided to go ahead and check in while I wait to hear the fate of my backpack. My room is badass, but it doesn’t excite me. I feel nothing but dread right now. I will say though, this is by far the best hotel room that I’ve gotten for $125.

The elevator has a number pad for you to put in your floor, then it assigns an elevator to you.

I need a stiff drink. I feel like my backpack has been kidnapped for ransom. The kidnapper won’t contact me back, so now all I can do is wait, which is emotionally draining and horrifying. If I feel like this about a backpack, I can’t imagine what it feels like to actually have a loved one be kidnapped. Ugh.

Yup, that’s the drop off area where my backpack was kidnapped.

I need this.

I sit in the lobby and wait for the phone call relaying the status of my backpack. I feel terrible. I also did notice that the sofa in the lobby has the same fabric as the sofa that I have at home.

The front desk keeps on calling the taxi dispatch to check status. I see the concierge pick up the phone, dial the number, greet the person on the other side and ask about the status. I saw her do this several times already in the past hour, then this time, I saw her face light up and crack a smile. They’ve located the driver and he is on his way back with my backpack. Thank God!! I feel like I won the lottery!!

In another 10 minutes, the front desk gets a call from the drop off area saying that the driver has arrived with my backpack. The driver wants 200 pesos for driving my backpack back!!! My backpack is now literally being held for ransom. I can’t believe this.

I meet the driver at the drive, and he hands my backpack to me. I ask him to look over the backpack, he agrees. Everything is still here, safe and sound. I let out a sigh of relief. I turn to the driver, and he asks for 200 arguing that he had to drive all the way back here after he’s already on the other side of town.

I told him 200 is too much. I’ve got a little bit of bargaining power now with the backpack in my possession. I talk him down some to 150 and decided to stop pushing since I just want this ordeal to be over with. I hand the money over to him with visible disdain on my face. He had the nerve to thank me. This is ransom, motherfucker, you don’t thank your victim!

Fuck the porter for not seeing my backpack, fuck the driver for being a degenerate piece of shit!!

Seriously, how do you miss a fucking full sized backpack? It also scares me to know that if I had just hailed a random taxi from the street, if the backpack had been forgotten in the trunk, I would have probably never seen it again. It did work out that I had the hotel call me a cab from a dispatch, even though the driver fucked me over.

OK, I am putting that event behind me now. I got my stuff back and only suffered an hour’s worth of emotional turmoil and 150 pesos. No more bitching about it, I am moving on.

This is what the rest of my room looks like.

Window from the bathroom that looks out onto the room, which looks out onto Mexico City.

Pimpin’ view!

JM and I had spoke about maybe having dinner together and going out later tonight. He calls me at 8, and we decided against meeting up tonight. I am all the way West here in Santa Fe, and they are still in Polano, in central Mexico City. The hassle and time of getting down there is just too much effort. We make plans to meet up tomorrow morning to go check out the Anthropological Museum.

Santa Fe is a financial hub with mutinational companies occupying tall office buildings. There are very few things within short walking distances. I ask the front desk if there’s a convenience store within walking distance. Nope. I want to buy water, and they suggested the Office Depot next door. I find it a little humorous that I am at an office supply store because I want to buy water since I didn’t want to pay the higher prices in the hotel.

After getting some water, I am out in search of dinner. There are no less than 5 restaurants inside my hotel, but the front desk recommended a restaurant that is in another nearby hotel. Sure, I’ll take a stroll.

The Audi dealership is right across from my hotel.

Here’s the hotel with the restaurant.

Xanto is the restaurant.

Fancy. I hope this doesn’t cost me an arm and a leg.

To celebrate the recovery of my backpack.

The waiter barely speaks any English and the menu is only in Spanish. I get him to suggest a few items to me, and let’s have it a go. I only have a faint idea of what I had ordered.

This was this most basic salad that they have, and it’s fancy. Dehydrated pineapple on top. Delicious, and I believe the first time I’ve had vegetables in any meaningful amount since arriving in Mexico City.

Tortilla soup. This was exceptional. The little bits of fried pork rind in the soup made it.

Put water in a glass bottle and the price automatically goes up 3 folds.

My fish entree. Very good as well. I can see why the front desk had recommended this place.

For dessert I order flan, and this crazy looking thing arrives. There’s a really long delicate spike made out of what I believe to be sugar with caramel at the bowl in the bottom.

After my paid dessert, I get some free churros. This was good as well. The price ended up being moderate, I don’t remember exactly now, but I think it was $40 or so. Not too bad for such a fancy and delicious meal. I am a satisfied man.

Back at the hotel, do some heavy duty blogging and calling it a night. What a roller coaster of an evening.

Tomorrow is the wedding. I better get some good rest tonight, as I am expecting tomorrow night to be wild.

To be continued at Mexico City Day 6 Part 1.


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