Estados Unidos Mexicanos – México

South of the border, this country takes the name from the beautiful Nàhuatl word Mēxihco, which means ‘the place of Mexihtli‘, one of the many names of the Aztec god Huitzilopochtli.

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Land of unbalanced contrasts, Mexico has managed to keep its rich heritage while thriving to an economic leap forward that lasts to come, amidst a never-ending war on drugs, decades of corruption as a government system, and deeply-rooted drug cartels that overwhelm its daily life.

All bets were on Mexico’s side during the years around the signature of the North Atlantic Free Trade Agreement. It was supposed to be the country’s moment, the opportunity to leverage its position as the leading commercial partner of the World’s biggest economy and neighbor. But beating all the odds, Mexico had to watch Brazil and Colombia take the lead as Latin American leaders, and the NAFTA turned out to be poison for the Mexican economy, widening social and economic gaps.

Politically, the PRI has dominated the country’s political landscape in the country since the 1910 Revolution, which created a perfect environment for corruption, and most important, an impunity culture within the highest ranks of the Administration that filtered down to criminal organizations, who now fear not the rule of law, and to a society that can’t do anything but watch powerless.

People tend to think of Mexico as a monolithic culture based on exported stereotypes, but Mexico is the real melting pot, product of the many cultures who set foot in here throughout its history: Chinese and Arab fusion food in the north-western states, Spanish and Mesoamerican languages, French desserts and pastry, Aztec and Mayan traditions coated with conservative Catholicism; Italian architecture, and a never-ending list of influences from all those who forged this country, whether for the good or the bad.

But even a troubled history filled with violence, uprisings, and racial animosities cannot bend Mexicans down. This is a country that stands proud. Here you will find an extremely colorful place, with its people permanently in love with life, cheerful, intense and vivacious, willing to beat its own narrative and ultimately establish a society based on the democratic and egalitarian ideals for which the Revolution and Emiliano Zapata fought.

In there, I lived in Culiacán, capital of the Free and Sovereign State of Sinaloa, the city the most notorious drug kingpins called home.

Also, check all the articles about Mexico and its photo galleries.

Deserve your dream
— Octavio Paz