The Diario Xalapa reports that the lowest temperature of an October day in Xalapa in thirty years was recorded on Sunday. The low temperature was 5.8 degree Celsius, which equates to 42.4 degrees Fahrenheit.
I can report that Sunday was a beautiful, sunny day, of which I took advantage by motoring to Naolinco with Tere, from whom I buy produce, as my guide. The clear day afforded some spectacular views of Pico de Orizaba, the highest peak in Mexico and third highest in North America, and of Cofre de Perote, also one of the highest peaks in Mexico, both from the town and along the drive there. Both mountains are also visible from various places around Xalapa, most notably from El Parque Juarez and from the glass enclosed lounge on the roof of my apartment building.
Naolinco is a small town about 15 miles North of Xalapa know for its shoemaking and other leatherwork. The entrance to town is adorned by a large statue of a shoemaker sitting over a work in process and there must be at least a hundred shoe and leathergood stores in the small town. There are also a number of homes and shops vending wine produced from local grapes. I haven’t yet tried the vintage, which I am guessing is of last week. The town’s central park is amongst the prettiest I’ve seen in Mexico and is directly connected to a small plaza in front of the cathedral, which you see in the photo.
The hillsides surrounding the town reminded me of the Appalachian mountains, with small farms stretching up the hillsides sporting cattle, mostly Holstein, grazing on the lush, vivid green hillside pastures that fade away into the forest. There were also the omnipresent horses and burros, often tethered aside the road to take advantage of the fodder that otherwise would go to waste, with the remnants of their manure present in the town’s streets.
The area is amongst the most picturesque of the areas I’ve visited in Mexico and its locale a bit higher in elevation makes for a climate a bit more temperate than here in Xalapa. All-in-all a good place to have an acre or so upon which to garden, keep chickens, and perhaps even a sheep or two.
If you look carefuly you can see Pico de Orizaba in the lower picture between the two street lights to the left of the church dome.