Friday, November 25, 2011

Los Pozos

Today we went to Pozos, which is a ghost town about 45 minutes outside of San Miguel.   Pozos, for a good part of its history was a very wealthy town - a lot of mining of silver and gold.   Under Mexican law, gold is owned by the government but silver is able to generate independent wealth (thus the market here for silver is much greater than for gold).

The original miners in this town were Jesuits.  As a result they generated a great deal of wealth.  (They eventually got ordered out of the country - with a demand that they get to Veracruz and then get out in about two days.)

Several decades ago the mines got abandoned and thus the town became the Bodie of central Mexico.  In the last few years, there has been some effort to remake the ghost town into an artistic community - a San Miguel2.  I remain a skeptic.

We first went to the old mine sites.  That is the top picture.  We spent about an hour looking around one of the open sites.  It is remarkably peaceful - more than Bodie (that ghost mining town in the Eastern Sierra) - but it is also high and dry like Bodie.  And like Bodie - it has wind.   We learned from our wonderful guide (Dali Amor) a lot about the growth of the town, the infusion of the French (about the time of Maximilian) and the eventual bust of the mines.  

But the second picture shows the town as it is today.  Again, it is very peaceful.  There is not much activity in the town.  Some investors have put a lot of money into making the town more of an artistic center.  Unlike San Miguel - where I found an immediate list of things I wanted to do - this place is boring.  Double of triple the size and it is still a snooze.

Our guide has a great idea of doing speciality concerts in the old mine site.   Groups would come to Pozos  on a first class bus and then listen to a concert and go to a restaurant for a first rate meal.  He has the sites picked out - all he needs is some investors.  (note go to my homepage and click on the email link in case you want to be that angel).

One other comment.  As we were at lunch a young student in tourism from Anáhuac de Queretaro.  She came up to our table and asked why we came to Pozos.  We had a good discussion about the town and its attractions.  She was doing research for a class.  She was well spoken and asked good questions.

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