After the city museum, I crossed the street to enter the Paseo Túnel de Minería, a mining tunnel reproduction and museum.
Here’s one of many tourist maps you can find around Centro:
Tunnel entrance elevator at Plaza de armas:
It’s quite a ways down!
I was once again told that the museum is temporarily closed and that there is instead an exhibit on child exploitation and sex trafficking. I said I still wanted to go in and they let me go down the stairs. But at the bottom, they had an English speaker (sort of — I think my Spanish was better!) make sure I really did understand what I was getting into.
The special exhibit has you start at the end. Most of the mining information stuff has been blocked off, but you can still get some of the info. Really, I wanted to do this just for the tunnel itself, so there was plenty there to make the journey worthwhile.
The tunnel was actually pretty spooky!
There were information panels and displays all along it. Very disturbing information, of course, but informational.
You can see here how they covered up some of the mining stuff:
Near the end, there, there was a very powerful animated film about a young girl getting recruited through her Facebook account. I was very lucky in the early days of the Internet to never get into a situation like this! After the film, there was a man handing out information on resources for women and children caught in a bad situation and how witnesses can report things.
This wasn’t a fun part of the day at all, but I came out knowing that Mexico is working to protect the rights and liberties of its women and children, and that is something that was well worth knowing.
I came back above ground at Plaza de armas, so I decided to stroll down the pedestrian Calle Constitución to go check out the oldest neighbourhood in Durango, Barrio de Analco.
I couldn’t get enough of this building at the corner of Constitución and 5 de febrero! Love the flying buttresses!
And the church bell!
This bit of Calle Constitución is modeled after the Hollywood Walk of Fame, with stars for all the famous actors who have filmed something in Durango. It is a lot more attractive and cleaner than the original walk of fame. 🙂
Finally, an actor I really like!
There was a craft market as well as a man selling tacos from a cart. They smelled divine…
Ah… the best actor of all time. So happy to see his name here:
There was a bit of a park at the end of the street:
And a pedestrian overpass that no one was using!
The main street in the Barrio de Analco was lined with well preserved old houses, a real feast for the eyes:
But get off the main road, and you pretty much have slum, not unlike in Maz’s own Centro:
It still has its own charm!
Coming back to Constitución, I thought that it would be nice to have that apartment upstairs!
The crowd around the taco guy had dissipated a bit, so I got in line! I just wanted a snack since I had big plans for lunch. But it was just past noon (I swear time stood still in Durango) and I had a long walk to lunch, so sustenance was required! $8 for a carne asada (BBQed beef) taco, with lots of different salsas and toppings, including chopped cabbage. I liked that the seller wore a face mask and changed his gloves to handle money. I eat from carts all the time in Maz and have never been ill, but sometimes find the hygiene standards could be a bit better.
I was just about to take my first bite when a man said in perfect, but heavily accented English, “Oh, you didn’t get to Mexico yesterday!”
I turned to him, a little bewildered, and asked him what he meant. “Number one, you’re eating from a cart. Number two, you just ordered; didn’t care what he was selling. Number three, you just started piling on toppings without examining anything and when we warned you that the green stuff was spicy, you added more!”
We had a chat as I ate my very delicious taco and he asked why I picked that cart, only because it was, in his opinion, the best tacos in that part of Durango! “Easy,” I told him. “It’s the one that had the biggest crowd!”
Sated, I headed back towards 20 de noviembre for the very long walk to the Emir restaurant. I was surprised to pass a truck that had a parking ticket!
The restaurant was very easy to find, just well past the Soriana and 5KM from my hotel according to Siri (I doubt it was really that much…). Emir is an ‘Arabic’ restaurant, the only one in Durango. Went for their mysterious (no description) ‘Lebanese platter’ (not quibbling over the fact that the Lebanese are not Arabs). Some time later, this arrived:
Growing up in the Montreal-Ottawa corridor with its huge Lebanese population, I’m very familiar with the cuisine and disappointed by attempts made to recreate it away from that region. Oh, I sometimes scratch the itch, but I really need to go back east to reach full satisfaction. So imagine my surprise that this was by far the best, never mind most satisfying, Lebanese spread I’ve had outside of Montreal-Ottawa! In Durango, Mexico! My only disappointment was that the fried ball that looks like an American football wasn’t a falafel (but it was still delicious). I was amazed by my willpower when I turned down more pita, but caved at the offer of baklava and Turkish coffee! This was a meal I will remember for a very, very, very long time. Total cost was something like a mere $220 with the tip.
The walk back to the hotel was rather necessary and I had a nap when I got there, but that was mostly because I didn’t get much sleep the night before because of all that coffee!
My day was far, far from done!