Mexico City – Day 12


An art installation in Puebla, Mexico

The bus from Puebla dropped me off at the airport. The taxi to my hostel would have been about two hundred and fifty pesos. The metro was five pesos. After a bit of negotiating I got my directions, paid my five pesos, and went on my way.

As to be expected anywhere in Mexico, if you wait long enough someone will start selling something. It was a long metro ride. The first entrepreneur was a lady that started selling chocolate bars.

“Chocolate bars! Five Pesos!”


She ran around the car shouting from the rafters, over and over again. I really wasn’t interested. Then a guy came through the train car selling one hundred percent authentic Samsung earbud head phones – only twenty pesos.


“Sorry man. I can’t use ’em.”


A musician came on the train with an accordion. He half-heartedly played a Mexican folk song while a little kid ran around handing out candy to people. As the next stop came close the kid went around and either collected money from them or recollected the candy.


“I really don’t want any candy. Here, thanks anyway.”


At the next stop the car was nearly empty, and a man came on that was clearly too thin to be healthy. He started shouting something in Spanish that I couldn’t understand, dropped a flannel shirt in the middle of the car, and then walked away. I specifically remember thinking that this was very strange.

At the other side of the car he set down his bag, and out of the corner of my eye I saw that he was taking his shirt off – all the while shouting in Spanish. At a certain point everyone in the train cringed in unison. I had no idea what was going on. He walked back towards the center of the car and you could see the man’s back was covered with scars. As he unfolded the flannel shirt it exposed a pile of broken glass.


He bent down and did somersaults through broken glass in a moving train car. I think he did it maybe two or three times. Then he swiftly cleaned up his things and started going around asking for money. I was so stupefied that by the time I reached into my pocket he was gone.


At the next stop another accordionist boarded. This time a girl handed out slips of paper with a message asking for money. When she recollected the paper I gave her five pesos. She looked about as shocked as I did a few minutes earlier. She thanked me and then got off the train.

Retable of the Church of Santo Domingo in Puebla, Mexico


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