I had a breakfast and morning jog ( I mean stroll) around Morelia before hitting the road to the Pyramids of Teotihuacan. It was only about 330km away so I decided to make it more interesting and head through the mountains. It was raining on and off all day and the temperature got down to 18 degrees. I had to put the lining back inside my jacket and dig my rain gear out from the bottom of my panniers. Some day I’ll get the packing right. Going through the mountains was a slow tedious process. My GPS doesn’t work any more but I did manage to buy a map off a street vender someplace, although to be honest it looks like it was drawn by a 3 year old and it’s completely useless. It was back to the map on the inside cover of the lonely planet guide to Mexico. it’s about the only thing useful in that book.
Every time I came to a small town which was about every half hour I’d spend 20 min driving about trying to find my way out. Some of these towns are nice but some really aren’t, some are filled with army and police as well and they look like there going to break into all out war any minute. They also have speed ramps everywhere. From what I can tell the average speed people drive here is about 140km, the speed limit is 110 but no one cares, even the cops. They only pull over the expensive cars and then stand over the driver with there hand’s out. You see it everywhere. I’m sure the speed ramps are the only way to slow people down but there ridiculous. I don’t even see them half the time till it’s too late and by then I’m almost over the handlebars.
I decided to get down out of the mountains and back on the main roads because I was getting sick of being lost, honestly I must have been completely lost about 4 times the rest of the time I was half lost. I even ended up in a farmyard surrounded by donkeys. It’s pointless asking for directions, everyone just blabbers on in Spanish, pointing this way and that way. I just sit there staring them in the face smiling like an idiot not knowing what the hell there on about trying to remember the hand jesters.
The only problem with taking the main roads was they were all heading to and through Mexico city, the most populous city on earth and I certainly didn’t want to end up lost in a city of 33 million people.
Teotihuacan is about 50km to the north of Mexico city so that meant I had to go in to the city find a ring road and get out without taking one wrong turn. Somehow I missed my turn, maybe its because all the signs numbers have worn off or there are sweet FA signs in the first place. Anyway I took the next exit and prepared myself for a couple of hours in Mexico traffic. Well what do ya know, this was the correct road after all, I was back on the motorway ( after paying the ridiculous toll fees, about $1 for every 10km ) and heading north to the Pyramids which I then found easily enough. Unfortunately they were closed when I got there so I got a hotel and had some dinner. I gave the bike a good check over afterwards, I’m missing a spoke in the rear wheel, need a new rear tyre and have oil leaking from the rear hub. There’s not much I can do about it until I get to a BMW garage and the nearest ones 4 days away in Cancun. I wasn’t planning on going there but now have no choice but on the upside I’m now going to go through Belize as well.
Alarmed awake at 7am I hopped out of bed straight into 4 inches of water, WTF I though as I opened the curtains. The whole room, hallway and bathroom was flooded . The hotel has water features throughout but this was too much. I heard a noise in the middle of the night that just sounded to me like one of the fountains outside so I just ignored it. Well I was half right, it was a fountain alright but not outside, it was in my bathroom. The plumbing for the sink had come loose and there was water fountaining all over the place. Luckily enough when it reached a certain depth it was able to access the shower and flow down the drain. It was a good thing most of my stuff was off the floor, what was there was soaked. I got dressed and went to inform management, I waited at reception for a good minute before searching the hotel for any staff. Even the security guy that was suppose to be looking after my bike was gone. To hell with it I thought I’m here to see the pyramids and off I went.
I must say they’re pretty big for sure but I thought they would be a lot bigger. One of them, pyramid le Sol is the 3rd largest on earth surpassed only by Cheops and the pyramid of Cholula in Egypt. It was built around 100 AD. They had 4 alters at each corner where they used to sacrifice children and it used be painted a bright red with a temple on top. All I could picture while walking around was the scene from apocalypto where the high priest was lopping off peoples heads at the top and tossing them down the steps for freaks with straw woven net’s to catch at the bottom. The whole place reeks of death. Happy days I’d say.
When I got back to my room there was water starting to come out from underneath the door and still no one had noticed. I got changed standing on the bed, packed my bags and left informing the receptionist on the way out. She wasn’t really too concerned, it must happen a lot I guess. Mexico.
I was headed to the city of Oaxaca about 500km away. It was nice and cool to begin with but as I reached the mountains about 200km into the journey the road and temperature rose sharply and quickly, soon enough I was back in to the blistering heat. The scenery changed dramatically as the road climbed its way through to Oaxaca, It’s now almost tropical. I reached Oaxaca about 5pm, got myself a room in a fantastic hostel and went exploring the city. It’s easily the nicest place in Mexico that I’ve come across,( that wouldn’t be hard though ) there are live bands playing salsa music in the streets and people dancing everywhere. I even had some mariachi’s play for me as I was eating dinner at the side of the square, all very romantic indeed.
Amazing ruins – albeit a bit creepy…
Been there:-) but as a tourist…
Just checking your blog, hope everything going ok with you. pics are great.