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Day 22 - Mexico City, Mexico

We got in right on time in Mexico City, Mexico. Ziggy and I were picked up by a stretch limo that whisked us right off to the hotel. Of course, Ziggy had to stick her head out the window along the way. The weather was nice and we sure welcomed it knowing that tomorrow afternoon, we would be in good old St. Louis.

We finally got to the hotel and up to the room. I told Ziggy to settle down and get some sleep. She was running around and seemed overly hyper. There was a book on the table in the hotel room titled, "History of Mexico City" so I started reading it.

Before Christopher Colombus set off towards America, Mexico Valley was already an important trading centre. The central area of the Mexican plateau had been occupied by different peoples for over 20,000 years (the exact date is very debated in archaeological circles), settled on the shores of its fertile lakes. Such is the case of the Mexicas, who -later- arrived from Aztlán and built an island of one square mile above one of these lakes. They built canals, some of which still exist today in what is now known as Xochimilco, in order to make trading and communication easier.

Thats as far as I got. I looked ever at Ziggy and she was sound asleep so I turned off the lights and did the same.

In the morning, we had breakfast and headed out the door. Zigg said she wanted to ride a horsey so we went to this farm about 5 miles out and she was in heaven. She rode this horse for a few hours and had a great time.

We headed back into the city and I told her that we had to get something to eat. This cantina came pretty highly recomended for it's Albondigas Soup. We were so glad we went ther. It was fantabulous. hahaha. While we were eating, we overheard some kids talking about a dance they were going to be performing at their school and that sparked Ziggys interest. She asked me she could dance with them and I asked them. They saw Ziggy and all agreed that it would be fine with them. But first, we had to finish the soup. Here's the recipe.

Albondigas Soup

1 pound lean ground beef
1/4 pound pork sausage
1 onion, chopped
1 egg, beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/2 cup cornmeal
6 (14 ounce) cans beef broth
1 (8 ounce) jar salsa
1 onion, chopped
2 (14.5 ounce) cans peeled and diced tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 cup white rice

Mix together beef broth, salsa, 1 onion, tomatoes, dried basil, oregano, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. (If you use condensed beef broth (e.g., Campbell's), eliminate the salt in the meatballs and use 5 cans (10.5 ounces each) broth plus one quart water.)

Bring to a boil and simmer 20 minutes.

Combine ground chuck, sausage, 1 onion, egg, salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, garlic powder, milk, fresh basil, and cornmeal, and mix well. Form into tiny, bite-size meatballs.

Add meatballs and rice to broth. Simmer, covered, very slowly for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Buon appetito!

After dinner, we followed them to the school. It was The Mexican Hat dance. The dance was fine. Ziggys singing wasn't so fine.

Mexican Hat Dance with Ziggy singing!!

After the dance, all the girls gave Ziggy a hug and a kiss and told her never to sing again. Her reply? "Hey, this ain't American Idol honey!"

Tomorrow, we're back in St. Louis and man I am ready and am sure Ziggy is too! Our destination? The St. Louis Arch!

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