MEXICO: One Touch of Venice

Visitors to Mexico City were almost sure to be asked last week, "Have you noticed anything about our city that reminds you of Venice?" In parts of the hemisphere's fifth city (pop. 2,234,000), water stood waisthigh. Thousands of working-class houses were flooded; many downtown shops closed; streetcar service was disrupted. Boys and unemployed men picked up welcome pesos transporting pedestrians across riverlike streets. Some of the ferrymen used surplus U.S. Navy life rafts or primitive boats made of packing cases; others, in hip boots or swimming trunks, carried their customers pickaback.


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