Xalapa and Coatepec

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The calm after the storm.

We took a bus from Mexico City to Xalapa and caught up on the sleep we had missed since storming the country 5 days prior. In a way this was the opposite of D.F. and exactly what my soul needed, rest and rainforests. It was a peaceful place in sharp contrast from the survival mode quickness of Mexico City.

The setting was lush and the climate was cool. We stayed outside Xalapa in a sleepy neighborhood near the city of Coatepec. Trekking through jungles and journeying over mountains we heard stories of ancient pyramids yet to be unearthed.

We hiked to the 4th Annual Raices Festival and attended an amazing Afrocubana percussion and dance workshop. I can’t say enough good things about how inspiring this festival was. It embodied everything that excites me about the performing arts – expressive storytelling, spirited movement and lots of drums!  A revival of the senses and awakening of the soul!

On our final day we toured the bicycle-powered coffee plantation and beneficio, Bicicleta Roja. Here bicycles are used to hull the outer layers and process the coffee beans. This drastically reduces the amount of water needed to prep the beans and is a more environmentally friendly and sustainable process, plus the coffee was delicious!

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