We arrived in Oaxaca on Saturday night the 20th of August. We stayed in the new annex to the wonderful B&B The Bugambillas. The annex has four guest rooms, a very nice sitting area and kitchen, and a patio and roof top deck. The staff call it El Secreto. think we were the first people to sleep in our room. It was one of the nicest places we have stayed on this trip.
On Sunday we explored Oaxaca and then on Monday morning we started taking Spanish lessons at a school called Oaxaca Spanish Magic. Monday through Friday we had four hours of lessons each day. Duke was in a class with one other student and I had a teacher to myself. I couldn't believe how intense it was to speak and listen to Spanish exclusively for four hours a day. I even discovered that this kind of extreme brain exercise can actually give you a headache! Monday afternoon we moved out of the Bugambilla and into a home stay which was cheap but turned out to be a disappointment. Never the less the school and the Spanish lessons were wonderful. I had a great teacher and I think I made great progress on my Spanish.
Tuesday afternoon we went to two artisan towns south of Oaxaca. One of the towns specialised in black pottery and the other one specialised in colorful carved wooden creatures called alebrijes. It was fun to explore the countryside and we bought some souvenirs in both places.
Wednesday afternoon we visited the Museo de las Culturas de Oaxaca. It was a marvelously interesting museum with exhibits about the history of Oaxaca up to the present. The best part of the museum was the wonderful building in which it is located, a beautiful former monastery. later we had dinner in a restaurant over looking the Zocalo and had fun watching a band and dancers.
Thursday afternoon we invited two other women from our classes to join us when we explored a couple more towns north east of Oaxaca. one of the women was from France and the other one was from St Paul Minnesota. We all had a great time. We went to see a giant tree in front of a church in El Tule and a little bit farther out of town we visited Teotitlan del Valle. We stopped at one workshop and had lunch in their empty restaurant and then the owner showed us how they make the yarn and dye it. He showed us how all of the colors are made from natural products like bugs, indigo, bark, and other plants. Then he showed us how the yarn is spun and how the rugs are made. The whole process was fascinating. After getting back to Oaxaca we sat in the Zocalo and listened to the municipal band.
Oaxaca also has wonderful chocolate which I sampled a couple of times.
Friday night we spent the night in Tehucan.