The volcano Popocatépetl letting off some steam at sunrise
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Occasionally, we are treated to a special surprise, climatically speaking, in the Valle de México. Take last weekend, for example. Mexico City shrugged off its grey-coloured shroud of contaminación and the hemisphere above us became unusually clear. The night sky was a brilliant inky-black studded with the city's million twinkling lights and the planes coming in to land every few minutes at the airport sped like comets through a clean night sky, for once. Dawn didn't so much break as creep up over the dark mountains, pushing the blackness of the night upwards with its delicate pastel-shades. From my roof, I watched as the mountains ceased to be flat sleeping lumps in the background to take on their usual three-dimensional character. The moon, a mere crescent at the base of a silver globe, moved up and up until it disappeared when the sun burst over the horizon.
View of Mexico City at night from my roof
The endless lights of the city
Early morning moon
The soft shades of dawn
Looking down towards the Centro Histórico and the Torre Latinoamericano
On Sunday, I got up early for my usual bicycle ride and caught the volcano Popocatépetl yawning in the sunrise, sending out little wisps of white breath from its mouth. Nearby, his volcanic sweetheart, Iztaccihuatl, lay motionless as the sun peeped over her silhouette trying to wake her up and sending the night's shadows scuttling away. Down below, Mexico City was still slumbering except for a few early risers braving the chilly air.
The two volcanoes, Iztaccihuatl on the left and Popocatépetl on the right
Popcatépetl at sunrise
The mountains surrounding Mexico City bathed in early morning mist
Looking towards the Centro Histórico in Mexico City at dawn
The Torre Latinoamericano in the Centro Histórico at dawn
The sun's rays on the Hotel Imperial
Palacio de Bellas Artes
Early light casting shadows on an old building
Santa Fe's skyscrapers
And then as the sun rose up and up, the hemisphere above us turned a solid blue, without a single white cloud to dilute it. It was so intense, so saturated, so blue that everything in the city seemed to be clean and bright and new. The trees and grass were doubly green, the coloured buildings turned vibrant orange and yellow, and modern skyscrapers became clean shiny mirrors reflecting back the blue.
Blue skies behind Caballito
Church tower decorated with tiles
Monumento a la Revolucion
A real treat for eveyone, and especially for my camera. Let's hope that after this performance, we get an encore really soon.