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Yesterday was my wife's birthday so we got in the truck for a road trip to Tlacotalpan. I love driving through the mountains of Vercruz, the views are spectacular. At times you can see for miles down into the orange groves. We headed north on 150D toward Veracruz but jagged southeast on 145D toward Coatzacoalcos. The land flattens out back into cane fields and wide, flat expanses. We then took 175 north at Cosamaloapan. This is a small highway with slow moving traffic, the land is very low along the river and a lot of water was standing in the yards.

Coming into Tlacotalpan the road closed for repairs so Google Maps guided us to "Casa de la Luz" which is just a large home that rents rooms with a private bath. The desk is manned till at least 10:00 PM but you have a key to a separate gate. The rooms are simple and clean but we could bring our dog which was important.

The city is beautiful, laid out along the river we ate at a small seafood restaurant watching the river flow by. We went back to the room and took a nap, then returned to the square just before dark. The number of birds in the trees of the park was simply staggering, there were hundreds in the trees singing very loudly. After walking around we found a cantina about 100 years old, complete with cigarette butts on the floor and geckos eating bugs on the wall.

Some weird chick came into the bar and the owner shouted to us, "California!" and then he proceeded to bring her a chair to our table. She was maybe 28, spoke no Spanish yet was on an extended bus trip making a lot of stops. As it turned out she is staying in the same place we were.

The owner of the bar said that Tlacotalpan was designated a historical city so no new buildings like supermarkets or hotels can be built to preserve the authenticity of the city. It is a colorful city and very safe. I unloaded my wallet taking out my cards and ID before we went out at night. After walking the 6 blocks back home there was a knock on our door. My wife had left her cell phone at the bar and they sent a young man to come and get me so I had to walk there and back at night, I felt totally safe.

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