Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Day 10- Merida-Chichen Itza- Cancun

Day 10- Merida to Chichen Itza to Cancun

As I mentioned in my last post, my entire intention of visiting Merida was to purchase a back tire for  my bike as the heavy load I’m carrying of equipment has left it pretty used up as my initial thoughts suggested by this point, not to mention the slipping and grip issue I’ve had with the rain.

As we arrived on a Sunday everything was closed, so I had to wait until Monday to do my searching. As Monday came, so did a crazy day. I started my search at 7am, little to my knowledge the places I seeked out the day before didn’t open until 9am or later, so I bummed around for a few hours. The first 2 places I visited did not have the size tire I needed, so I stopped by the other 2 places I had in mind, which didn’t have a tire either. Fantastic, it’s 11am by this point and I’ve gotten nowhere. So along my being lost somewhere in Merida, I stumble upon a bicycle shop, that for some unknown reason had exactly 3 quarts of motorcycle oil, I thought, ok one problem fixed, at least I can change my oil, although when I opened the container, it looked as if the oil had been sitting on that shelf for many years. But oh well, I was tired of looking and changed the oil with the funky looking stuff labeled oil.

I continued my search of my tire around noon, when I was once again lost (yeah go figure, I’m guiding myself around a major city on instinct alone, way to go captain crazy!) As I was lost I found by luck again a random scooter store that for some reason or another had a tire my size, although it was a street (70/30) tire and not a dual sport (50/50) tire, I did not care at this point. At this point in time I found out how expensive it is to own a motorcycle of my kind around these areas as I reluctantly forked over $235 bucks for a tire that costs half that in the states, but I was tired and wanted to move on. So the guy tells me it will be an hour to install it and have me out of there. Well an hour passes and still there are 2 bikes in front of me, I start to get restless, another 30 min passes, and the mechanics go on break. So by my calculations, I would get out of there in 3 hours if I was lucky.

Crazy me said, screw this! (At this point I’d been driving and sweating all day and was very hungry and cranky and displeased with my service) So I said, “That’s it! I’ve had it!” to myself, I got my bike, put it in the shop, grabbed their tools, their floor, their bike lifter (all in front of their face), removed my own tire, removed it off the rim, put on the new one, mounted it back on, lubricated my chain, balanced it and was out the door all greased up in less than 35 min. Fastest I’ve ever put a tire on in my life, you don’t want to mess with Alex when’s he’s angry.

After a few closed streets and not being allowed back into my hotel because they were filming of a movie right in front of our hotel, and once again “random” searches by the police, I arrived back at the hotel to pick up Brett and off we went.

As I left Merida, stopped by my favorite $1 juice stand to pick up my last glass of fresh carrot juice good bye juice stand, you were my favorite thing in Merida, besides the comedy show put on by some great clowns in the town square, and you will be missed). We left a beautiful hotel Brett was nice enough to get for us and were on our way to Chichen Itza by 2pm.

So everyone has said that Chichen Itza is the one of the best Mayan pyramids to see and visit. I can tell you for my taste it is not. Uxmal is way better. Chichen Itza is very crowded, has an extreme amount of vendors, you can’t climb to the top, is very small compared to other ruins and is expensive to get in. Uxmal, my favorite, is the same price but is much larger, no crowds, much better preserved, and Sayil is also great as you can climb to the top and roam around at your leisure touch and hiking to the top or anywhere you want to go. Chichen Itza is over rated, and heard a trip from Cancun costs $160 bucks!

Well lucky us, since we left so late from Merida, we arrived at 4:30 pm; they closed at 5pm and were allowed to enter for free for 30 minutes. We saw everything and took pictures of everything and were out of there by 4:55pm, other ruins took us at least 2 hours because of their vast size.

Cool Wooden Mask

As we left Chichen Itza, we were confronted with the same toll road we just paid US $10 to get through and had to pay again $10 to get back on, yea way to screw tourist’s Mexican government.
By this time it was dark and were riding at night, something Brett said he would never do in Mexico, and something I knew I would be crazy enough to do at some point on this trip, drive at night; needless to say it was exhilarating for me and quite the adventure.

Arriving at Cancun we paid another $25 to get off the toll road I wanted to punch the guy at the booth for charging so much but I knew it wasn’t his fault. So far I estimate I’ve spent over $200 US on Mexico toll booths, thanks again Mexican government. The funny thing is on the back of the ticket I read that if you die on the cuota (toll) road they help pay for your funeral expenses, I thought, oh that’s nice to know. That really justifies that $25 I just spent ha ha

So now I’m at am amazing hotel, enjoying the beach and waves.

Nothing like $1 flip flops to complete your beach experience 

Unfortunately I have a sore throat and feel a temperature coming on, not exactly good as I’ll be scuba diving tomorrow, but like I told Brett, they’ll have to pull my ass out of the water if they have too, because I’m definitely not missing out on scuba diving in a Cenote! (Aka underwater cavern, it’s like Carlsbad Caverns flooded and diving in it)

Until then, wish me luck! Fever and all!

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