Barra: another carnivalFebruary 27, 2020 in Mexico ⋅ ☀️ 28 °C
Continuing south-east along the Pacific, I arrive via another overnight in Barra de Navidad. In the 16th century it was the starting point of a Spanish expedition to the Philippines. In the 21st century it's a small beach town about the size of Mazunte, the Pacific resort where I stayed last year. It's popular with overseas visitors but the character is very different: while in Mazunte the beads 'n braids count was in the hundreds, Barra attracts North American retirees both short- and long-term. It's nice not to feel a fish out of water.
Barra is quite musical as well: after an afternoon siesta, from nearby I hear a female singer belting out James Brown's "I feel good, I got you". And one evening the lilt of a blues harmonica drifts in from a restaurant and tempted by this siren blow, I enjoy classic sounds ranging from Jimmy Reid to Taj Mahal. But not everything is English: the bridge from blues to salsa is crossed by another singer playing "Oye como va", which first fell on northern ears thanks to Carlos Santana---who of course comes from Mexico.
And there's more music with the carnival, sensibly planned a week after the major ones.
Back at my friendly guest house, conversations turn from the B word (Brexit) to the possible worldwide legalisation of marijuana (another Mexican word, of course). But how distant these subjects these seem now, with the first reported coronavirus cases in Mexico on the last day of February.Read more