I left Honolulu about 12:30 pm on Tuesday and was happy to see that I was upgraded to first class. However, I didn’t get to enjoy too much of it, because right out of the gate, we encountered so much turbulence that I was sure that we were to crash. In fact, the seat belt light stayed lit for three hours straight and the flight attendants could not get up to even get us a drink of water or serve us any food. I overheard one of them saying they had never had a flight like that where they were essentially “grounded” for three hours right out of the gate.
Fortunately, about two hours out from LAX, the turbulence finally passed and we were able to be served. As it turned out, we arrived about half an hour ahead of schedule so I guess those tailwinds really pushed us to an early arrival.
I took advantage of my Los Angeles stopover to attend a luncheon meeting of my high school class reunion committee. We joined several family members for an Armenian dinner, then my son Stephen and I were off to Querétaro for a 1:00 am flight via a three hour layover in Houston. We were upgraded on both these flights which was a big relief for my son who is 6’5″ tall and has a hard time fitting into economy seats!
We had no trouble at all at the Hertz rental car counter, as the agent spoke English to us and did not try to sell us unneeded rental car insurance. After a joyful reunion with my daughter-in-law and grandchild who had been in Mexico since right after Thanksgiving, we went out to an authentic taco restaurant, then had a fruit-filled churros for dessert.
The next day we set out for San Miguel de Allende, a World Heritage site about an hour away from Querétaro. It is a popular tourist destination and home to American expatriates, art galleries, cafes, and historical churches. Of course I could not resist going into La Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel and of course took a picture of the pipe organ. Unfortunately we did not hear it played.
We also went into another church but stayed only briefly since a mass was going on.
After lunch, we stayed around the San Miguel Arcángel and were very fortunate to witness two wedding celebrations. As you can see in the video below, there are two giant bride and groom figures which dance around to mariachi music. At first I thought this was the actual bride and groom dressed up in costumes, but my daughter-in-law told me they are actually two guys.
Roman Catholicism remains the dominant religion in Mexico and there are many outdoor nativity scenes. I took pictures of some of them in San Miguel de Allende as well as those in downtown Querétaro.
I was very interested to see that children take a photo with the Three Kings (because they bring gifts).