Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Tlalpujahua- Say That Fast Five Times!

Just a short drive from "Round Town" is the village of Tlalpujahua.

I will not try to tell you how to pronounce it. I think I now have it down pretty good, but it has taken some time. I think that the pronunciation is like the concept of "absolute zero" , something you can approach but is impossible to reach.

Once a great mining town, a massive landslide (and slag heap slide) covered half the town.
To this day you can visit the church what was buried by the slide. Okay, you can visit the steeple, the rest is still underground. I took more pictures of the church but through a technical error (that was entirely my fault and sadly not the only one of the day) most were not usable. Good! That will give me an excuse to go do some more!

A Church in the Basement???

The town is now know for its cantera (stone carving), Christmas bulbs and ceramics.

Sadly we got there mid week, and SO many things seemed to be closed. Which will give me yet another excuse to return. We took some time and looked at some of the cut stone that was available there as we are planning a patio in the back. Prices there there close to half the cost of what I have priced around here in Patzcuaro.

This is a very charming village.. It, like Patzcuaro, has been designated a "Pueblo Magico"
Walking through the town you find cobbled streets, winding stairways, large town square with children playing.

For those of you who are geekie science fiction fans like me, here is a little trivia tidbit for you.
Frank Herbert, for a time lived in Tlalpujahua. If that name is not familiar with you he is the author of the Dune series, one of the best selling sci-fi books ever. What Lord Of The Rings is to fantasy writing, Dune is to sci-fi. The town is mentioned in his biography, DREAMER OF DUNE.

Tlal is also conveniently located near the butterfly sanctuaries (Chincua and Rosario) . So we are planning on staying there and doing an overnight from Patzcuaro so we can be at the sanctuaries first thing in the morning. So, as we had extra time, we thought we would check out one of the hotels we had heard good things about. We popped into El Mineral Hotel, looks cute and comfy, but the rooms sizes range from claustrophobic to very comfortable so have a look before you book.


Warm and Roomy!

Many people who go to see the butterflies stay at Angangueo. We drove through that town as we continued our trip. It did not seem to have a great deal of charm or amenities for visitors. Perhaps if you have been there you can correct me on that.

Next stop, ancient ruins!


Babs said...

THAT's It! That's the town where the feather artist is.......if you go back I hope you go see him. He is old and his work is very, very expensive, I've been told BUT then someday you can remember that you went there!
I went to Chincua when I went to see the butterflies. The little children are very poor and my Mexican friend suggested we buy fresh eggs in a village to take to them because it gives them protein. I wish you could have seen those little ones carefully walking home holding those eggs. Priceless. But, much to their surprise I also had little toys for them and even the adults lined up for them as we left....a wonderful day for me.
The horseback riding to the top - well that is another story!

Felipe Zapata said...

Todd, you have made my price of admission here worth it. My wife and I have driven by the Tlalpujahua exit off the autopista to and from Mexico City many times, and each time we say we gotta detour there one day. It´s just a stone´s throw off the autopista. In fact, you can see the town from the autopista.

I had never seen a photo of the place, and now I have. I wanna go, and will.

It´s not difficult to pronounce the town´s name. Virtually everything in Spanish is easy to pronounce because you simply say every syllable. With names like this, however, just like Tzurumútaro, the initial T is silent. Piece of cake. English is far harder to pronounce than Spanish.

Laal-poo-há-wah. Accent is almost always on the penultimate syllable in Spanish unless an accent mark indicates otherwise.

Of course, I could be wrong in this case. It happens.


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