My youngest son Nico has been mad as a hornet ever since his older brother got to go to Mexico with me and he didn't. He'd been promised a trip and it finally happened over Memorial Day.
He made me climb up both the Pyramid of the Moon and Pyramid of the Sun. Ouch, to say the least. I laughed as I chugged up the last leg of the Pyramid of the Sun. This was my third and last time up to the top. I told Nico I'd rest at the bottom while he took his kids up one day.
We saw all the great sites and I have to say, it was fun staying in the Centro Historico. I have friends in La Condesa and tend to stay there. Friends, and some of the best restaurants, are there but it's a slanted view of the city.
I'm always proud of him but I laughed when he caught him self. "How much is this in real money?" he asked about something or other. Before I could say anything he was punching himself in the thigh, saying, "Why do I say such stupid things. I mean our money, not real money! Does this make me a racist?"
We had a lot of fine meals and Nico was an adventurous eater. He's odd in that he likes oysters and likes to try new things but even I was surprised (and pleased) how well he went for the escamoles (ant eggs) at El Cardenal.
We agreed for fun, ambiance, food and music, Cafe de Tacuba was our favorite. It's a well-known tourist spot but locals go and you'd have to be a pretty cold fish not to be taken in by its old-school elegance and charm. I think their salad of nopales is incredible. I don't know how they prepare them but the nopales are some of the best I've ever had. We both loved the indulgent house enchiladas, which have loads of cream and cheese. The waitress took a shine to Nico and asked where his mother was. I explained that we were two lucky cabelleros doing up the town and she just grabbed his face and kissed him!
I don't want to discount the fact that Mexico City can be a dangerous place but honestly, so is New York. So is San Francisco if you should turn the wrong corner at the wrong time. Mexico City is incredible and it's a shame that it isn't better known by Americans. As someone who spent most of his 20s traveling through Europe, and loved it, Mexico is just as interesting, just as much fun and we're neighbors. I'd hope you'd at least consider a trip other than the resort towns. If you're nervous, you can hire some very reasonably-priced help from the guides like Ruth Alegria, but all you need is an open mind and a hungry stomach.