I got off the plane and began the long drive from the airport to Mexico City’s Santa Fe neighborhood. It’s actually not much of a neighborhood, it’s as my friend Tim Leffel called it, “like Silicon Valley.” My hotel, the Westin Santa Fe, is just one of dozens of imposing modern buildings, lots of big roads and concrete and no feel of being in a city. The vastness of this megacity was audacious from the air, it spread for miles and miles and the same was true on our drive from the airport.
We got a jolt when we were just about at the hotel and suddenly, I saw a car flipping over two or three times and then land crashing into a taxi as we drove by. It was so sudden, and then there were people all running to try and help out the poor guy who must have been badly injured. I told the man at the desk at the Westin who said that sometimes ‘we drive a little crazy here.’
I wanted to find a bite to eat but there were no city streets, only giant boulevards and these gigantic hotels. But I went into a mall and found a very nice place with a twist. Vapiano is a pasta and pizza place where you get a little card then go up to stations where a chef makes your pasta right in front of you.
The noodles are dunked for a timed spell in an automatic gizmo and they sizzle up your entree as you watch, or, in my case, take photos. A couple was ordering and got very amorous, kissing and hugging and clutching like people do when they are young and in love. A charming sideshow as I dined alone.