Mexico has long been on my travel list, and for a former Californian and current Nevadan, I’m slightly embarrassed by the lack of visits to the country just south of the border. But I didn’t want to go to the usual suspects like Tijuana or Cancun. I grew up in Santa Ana, California, and the healthy Mexican American population in my neighborhood had long inspired me to visit cities that really embodied the Mexican spirit.
I couldn’t be luckier when Apollo Robbins was asked to speak at La Ciudad de Las Ideas last month in Puebla. I knew little about Puebla except that it was an hour from Mexico City, this little tidbit excited me very much since it sounded neither like a high-risk border city or tourists-invaded beach city.
Maybe it’s my Santa Ana upbringing, maybe it’s my admiration for the uncompromising warmth of the Mexican people, but Puebla felt immediately familiar to me. I was instantly comfortable in the gorgeous city, at once beautiful and pained, layered with complex textures, emboldened with bright golds and deep blues. I knew right away my soul had promised to return, to Mexico, to the lingering golden light of her afternoons, and the open hearts of her people.