Sunday 7th March.

I was rather ill during the night and stayed in the room all morning.  Neil went shopping and exploring.  After a few hours sleep I felt a bit better and wandered to the main Zocalo and had a light meal at Terranova - bumped into Neil, who also had lunch.  Then we both went exploring various bits of the city - especially some arcades - Los Arquiles.  Evening meal at Terranova again, starting to feel a lot brighter.

Monday 8th March

Feeling better, up and out at 7:30am, breakfast at, you guessed, Terranova.  Left Oaxaca City and headed off to the temple ruins at Monte Albán for some history.

Then back to plants - we sped along the fast toll hwy190 past hectares of dasylirions, turning off at Nochixtlán and then randomly selecting small roads to drive along.  At one point we ended up next to this plant - Beaucarnea purpusii, which is apparently quite rare.  This spot felt very remote - you can see the small dirt track road we were travelling along and there was no other trace of man at all as far as the eye could see.

This I believe is Agave americana var oaxacensis - although it looks nothing much like other forms of Agave americana it does seem to check out in the books.

We were heading back towards the Tehuacán Valley and some of the plants were getting familiar - the giant Pachycereus weberii again.

Our destination was Huajuapan de León (Wah-wah-pan), a lovely lively town I had stayed in previously.  But we somehow got lost and ended up racing the sunset - we won, just.  First choice Hotel Garcia Peral was full (?) but first reserve, Hotel Colon, was fine.  We ate at Hotel Garcia Peral to make it up and, well, wow.  I started with grilled nopale salad followed by slow cooked beef that had then been grilled with avocado, pepper, nopale and coriander salad and the nicest salsa verde I have ever had.  Casa Oaxaca has a rival...  And Neil persuaded me (not that hard, admittedly) to try a margarita.  And then another one... 


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