Like I said before, we were shocked at the high level of industrialization and diverse economic development here in the Puerto de Veracruz. The city also exhibits some distinctly American consumption patterns amidst its myriad cultural influences, which is charming, amusing, fascinating (and occasionally irritating) for American travelers (me) and gringified Mexican travelers (Harold). The following things strike us as particularly "American" about the lifestyle here:
coffee to go
big pickup trucks (not for work!) that get like ten miles per gallon
payment plans (for everything from polo shirts to laptops)
choosing between paper and plastic grocery bags
gift registration for weddings, 15th birthdays, etc
DVD rental kiosks (but you have to provide two character references, a deposit, and two forms of ID to join!!)
child safety tethers (aka kids on a leash)
wedge heels (ubiquitous in a heels-wearing culture such as this: they qualify as heels but are easier to walk in!)
Chinese buffets that look run-down
brownies (for sale for 12 pesos at uncle Victor's neighbor's house)
So we Americans are not to despair! We shall not be homesick here in Veracruz....
The three random photos show a KFC "Chickylandia" playground, a child on a leash at the mall in front of Sears, and a laptop in a coffee shop in the air-conditioned mall.