1. Spend the afternoon on a terrace watching the sunset until nightfall brings out a luminous moon peeking from Santo Domingo? What a waste of time! You’re better off staying at home and watching TV.
2. Why travel to a state that has it all in terms of natural and cultural richness? A place where there are eight regions, each with its own language, food, traditional vestments, history; where you will find mountains, jungles, forests, beaches, waterfalls, archaeological sites, museums. It would be better if you visited eight different countries to find everything Oaxaca has ¿Right?
3. The cemeteries turn into celebrations with loved ones bringing favorite foods, decorating graves with lots of flowers. There is music, and all night talk about memories of their loved ones who’ve departed. That’s scary! I’d rather dress as a superhero and drink all night.
4. Go see the petrified waterfalls of Hierve el Agua, which are unique in the entire continent? What for?
5. Why go to the Tlacolula market, where you can spend a whole morning with your family, have barbecue for breakfast, buy folk art, visit the church, buy fresh produce, and see the textiles made by the same artisans that you are talking with? You can go to Walmart or Soriana, buy your groceries in 20 minutes and go immediately back home.
6. You can hear someone explain how mezcal is produced, only to have them take you over to the distillery, show you the whole process, then share it with you directly from the barrel. Later you’ll share some “memlitas” straight from the “comal” with freshly made (and highly-specialized) salsa? Why so many explanations!? You can go to any store and just buy this stuff in bottles.
7. You eat a prehispanic dish called “Caldo de Piedra,” served in a dried gourd with water and all its ingredients already in it, letting red hot rocks fall, cooking everything in before your eyes, knowing that doing so preserves the “Chinanteco” traditions? I’m better off eating an instant soup from the microwave, and in just three minutes… READY!
8. Going to a traditional celebration in Oaxaca means you will surely have to walk in the procession of a Calenda, through the streets of the city, were you are surrounded by friends and family, everyone dancing to the beat of the band, the “Chinas Oaxaqueñas”, “Tehuanas” o “Costeñas”, the giant “monos de calenda” livening the party, some launching firecrackers and drinking tons of mezcal. Sounds horrible.
9. Visiting a UNESCO World Heritage Site with three cultural sites declared Tangible Heritage Sites (Monte Albán, The historic downtown area, and Mitla)? Whatever! As if it were a big deal!
10. And what’s so special about the beaches in Oaxaca? Warm water, world class points and beach breaks, protected sea turtle habitat, a range of accommodations from luxury hotels to hostels with people from around the world? That’s nothing special, Thanks!
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