I ended up on the road all day yesterday, so no update happened. It was a really surreal week in Mexico City, and I didn’t see that much of the city other than my hotel, our customer’s offices, and the roads in between. That’s pretty much a normal business trip, but because the hotel was in an office park, we didn’t really get any time at night to explore the local culture.
I have two lingering impressions of Mexico City. The first was walking down the street and mentioning to our host that the enormous double-deck elevated highway we were walking beneath surprised me, given Mexico City’s history of earthquakes. His wry response was, “Yes, that surprises us here too.” Mexico City has so many cars that there aren’t too many alternatives, apparently.
The other was watching the city recede beneath us as we took off—miles and miles of dense city and residential blocks of gray and brown concrete, livened with splashes of earth-tone colors, receding into the distance as far as the eye could see, lapping at the sides of the giant mountain peaks and hills that shrugged their way up from the plateau into the clouds. The contrast with Chicago, where our flight connected, could not have been more vivid—yes, miles and miles of residential blocks, but blocks that were tree-lined, with space between the buildings, green-lawned… all luxuries that were reserved for very few properties in Mexico City (at least from my vista near the airport).
The trip wasn’t a total loss, though. I ended up talking with my seatmates for the entire 90 minutes between Chicago and Boston. My companions were a Mexican girl who will be studying international relations for a year at the University of Maine, and John McBride, a managing partner McBride & Lucius who likes Father Ted and Janacek. It was definitely the most entertaining random conversation I’ve had in a while.