MEXICO: Water for Tourists

Of all Mexico City's tourist attractions, canal-laced Xochimilco, "Place of Flowers," is probably the best advertised. In their flatbottomed, flower-decked canoas, Xochimilco's boatmen pole sightseers, picnickers and lovers between the canals' eucalyptus-lined banks. Other canoes with gardenias, carnations and violets draw alongside; or gondolalike chalupas glide up while their mariachis play and sing La Paloma or Cielito Lindo. Some of the big canoas have luncheon tables in their centers at which the tourists can eat mole and tortillas and drink the famed Mexican beer.

Last fortnight, tourists who went out to Xochimilco...

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