On Monday we went on a private tour to see more of the local culture and history. Our guides, Moro and Francisco were recommended to us by Marsha whom is the building manager at la ceiba where we are staying in Zihuatanejo. Thanks to Marsha’s recommendation we had a wonderful day filled with laughs, history lessons, great food and plenty of sunshine!
Petatlan is agricultural town very rich with history. As one of the largest cities in state of Guerrero, Petatlan was well suited for training military because it had all the agricultural resources readily available. The troops were trained here and then shipped to a Mexican military base in Acapulco. Our first stop was to an old cemetery beside the main highway.
A lot of the plots are done up very nicely. Some with marble and some very large monuments for the whole family.
Other plots are a more modest memory of those have passed. The remaining family members must pay an annual fee to maintain their spot in the cemetery. If the annual fee is not paid every year the grave and remains are removed from the cemetery.
Downtown atop a small hill is the church in Petatlan. It is dedicated to Padre Jesus de Petatlan who performed miracles throughout Mexico. Over the years, many people crawl up the steps and into the church on their knees to pray or give thanks to the padre.
Petatlan Church altar from main entrance.
As this was our tour guides first trip with their new car we toured around while waiting for the padre to bless their new car.
This mural is painted inside a large theater looking area which is also part of the municipal buildings. It depicts a wide variety of Mexican history; The end of Mexican slavery is illustrated by thelarge man with white robe to the left of center showing a broken chain on his right arm. To the right of that is the first Mexican president of African descent. The six pillars below that represent the monument to Los Ninos Heroes; 6 heroic cadets between the ages of 13 and 19 who lost their lives in battle. There was a municipal security personnel that came by to explain a few more stories in Spanish that our tour guides translated but the fact the he was carrying a machine gun had me a little pre-occupied and not really paying attention as well as I should have been.
The Ruins, museum, pyramid and Pelota Court (above) were located down a battered road from the recent hurricane. The Ruins are only protected by barbed wire fences. Quite astonishing to see these pieces of history travelling down a dusty Mexican road. We stopped across from the museum for a short break as the museum was not open due to the Mexican holiday. Our tour guides talked to the museum curator’s to try and convince them to let us in but they were insistent that they needed to finish cleaning in preparation for opening the next day. A few moments later as we sit under a palapa covered open air rest area the curator and lead archaeologist came across the road to join us.
From Barra de Potosi we could see Playa Larga (Long Beach) and Playa Blanca (White Beach) which are 9.5 miles of pristine beaches to the south of Zihuatanejo.
Across from Barra de Potosi is a bare strip on the hill. Our tour guide explained that the trees were cleared away so cattle could graze on the grass. The trees have never grown back. Our second tour guide (Moro) told a story from years ago where he asked to smuggle marijuana beneath the floor boards of his truck. Because he refused, they burned his truck. After this, the federal officials were brought in and dealt with these people in what I can describe as ‘Cowboys and Indians” style. <gulp>
After lunch we ventured into the lagoon where we came across this family fishing.
Pelican waiting atop the mangroves.
Osprey sitting in the mangroves. I told this Osprey he is welcome to stay here as we don’t need his protection this year.
Blue Heron sitting on a post.
Posts from a shrimp farm that was also destroyed during the past storms.
Here are some locals at a restaurant near the mangroves.
We finished our day with a nice meal and another beautiful sunset! Ahh!