During my previous Mexican jaunt I had spent quite a bit of time among the northern, colonial mining towns such as Zacatecas, Guanajuato and San Miguel de Allende. I had, however, missed out the largest of them all: Queretaro. I have no idea why I didn't go there the first time, but was glad as it gave me a point to visit on my way north as well as an opportunity to revisit the region with older, more understanding eyes (I'm a little mortified when I read what 23 year-old me was writing about the place). It also allowed me to meet some local people, and here I was really lucky to stumble upon Clara and Mario, a wonderful young couple who not only showed me the town, but also its varied culinary delights; the dry, semi-arid landscape of the central highlands; family life; and even the less picturesque, but deeply atmospheric, legacies of the mining history that can be seen in the ghost towns that dot the region.
|The abandoned smelting furnaces of Pozos, one of the many ghost towns left over from the mining boom in Central Mexico.|