We have decided to book just the flights and the hotels!

Main characters : Charlie and Nick... and me...of course!

"Mexicans descend from the Maya, Peruvians from the Inca and Argentines from the ships!"


01 may Playa del Carmen (MEXICO)

After a 12 hours flight: here we are on the bus which takes us to our hotel!

Cancun - Playa del Carmen transfer lasts one hour and as usual I am impressed by the first shy contact with this new country!

A sleepy "Pedro" quietly makes us fill a registration form"!


02. 05. 2007 Playa del Carmen (MEXICO)

After sleeping just a few hours because of the jetlag, we are soon up and about ready to plan the first part of our journey.

First of all we have to change our money... I still can't understand how the sharp clerk in the exchange bureau tried to steal 100 euro from us. If it wasn't for the alert Nick, she would have managed too! So: beware!

We had a typical lunch in a very nice little restaurant along the street: "Los Portales" with a lovely atmosphere included!

A great plate of "asado" chicken, rice and spicy black beans! We are going to leave tonight to Merida, at midnight, with an ADO bus.




03 may Merida (MEXICO)

Merida, capital of Yucatan.

Arrived at our destination, armed of our beloved "Routard" (the "Lonely Planet" of the poor) we start the "research of the hotel lost"! We walk like three zombies around the lonely streets of a Merida that at 5 am is going to wake up. Thanks to our guide we find a very cheap place to sleep: Hotel Margarita that for almost 5 euro per person per night becomes our base for the following 3 days! It is a colonial building which reminds of ancient splendours but very comfortable, even if at 5.30 am, with a sleepy receptionist and with all the lights off except the ones that were lightning a big Virgin Mary and a Christmas tree (in may!), it had an entrance with a big, dark door with rods (like a prison) like the most classical horror movie, this didn't make us hope for anything good! It seemed to be the beginning of the horror movie "The hostel", but luckily we were wrong!

Breakfast in the center of the town, at he so-called Zocalo! In that bar, with a wonderful plate of fresh fruit, the big Mexican flag that flew and the people who walked in front of us... what a feeling, man!

At 9.30 am we joined the city center free tour, but 30 minutes later, a bit bored we went to visit the cemetery by a taxi, famous for the coloured graves where each colour corresponded to a different type of death...

But our days are not finished yet. We buy 2 tours for the most important Maya sites of the area. First stage: Uxmal! I had the same feeling as the time I visited El Cairo and when I saw Stonehenge for the first time. I wasn't too impressed initially... The two big pyramids of Uxmal, however, all the monuments around and above all the several mysteries that you can breath in the air have been very interesting, then we were the only visitors of the site! I stared the huge spaces all around trying to imagine what hundreds years ago Maya watched from there.

Uxmal is a place that impressed me because of the presence of iguanas. I have never seen so many in my life, they were everywhere, enjoying themselves, taking the sun, and eating regardless of the presence of these strange beings on two feet armed with video-photocamera! The world is really strange!

When we came back to the hotel I asked to the usual sleepy receptionist to wake us up at 8.00 because we had to catch the bus to Chichen Itza, did he wake us up?

"We shouldn't deny that being a nomad has always made us happy. In our head it is associated to the escape from the history, oppression, law and boring coercion to the absolute freedom."
- Wallace Stegner - (The American West as living space)

04 may Chichen Itza (MEXICO)

Chichen Itza is the most important site in fact it is candidated to be one of the 7 wonders of the modern world!

Our guide told us of many interesting things of these magnificent people. They also had their own version of the beginning of the humanity...

"Once upon the time therewas a God of corn who was the leader of all the Gods. One day, all the Gods, tired of all his wrongs forced him to have a fight, the winner would be the new leader. "Pop-corn" God lost, they cut his head off and displayed it to make everyone uderstand who was the real leader... Then, a beautiful woman walked nearby, he managed to approach her and from his head a grean of corn fell down and, I didn't understand how, but it insemined her and from this the first human being was born!"

After this novel or legend we admired several ruins in a very high temperature of 41° that made it difficult also following what our guide was saying!

After a huge lunch we left for Merida and as soon as we got off the bus I saw one of those doors used in the saloon in the Far West; we entered and suddenly we turned back in time, we were in a typical Mexican tavern! I looked around Zorro and Pancho Villa! We drank something while we chatted to all the curious people who approached us to see who these three Gringos were!

Then we walked around the lanes, the "calles" and the city center, the so-called "Zocalo" till late at night. It was wonderful walking in a sea of Mexicans without meeting any tourists. I was very happy in those moments and also more when I left my brother at a disco, I came back to my hotel alone, through the lanes, with a small bottle of yogurt in one hand, I felt at home...




05 may Merida (MEXICO)


They woke us up! But surprise!

There was an empty bed! Carlo's bed! I was pretty sure that he was with the girl with whom I saw him dancing in the disco, but who knows?

We missed the visit to Cuzama! Anyway we decided to wait for him. At 8 am we went to have breakfast in the center, in Plaza Mayor, and here is he coming quietly towards the hotel! I called him and as nothing had happened he sat and ordered the breakfast chatting with no problem!

Positive note: we see the solemn flag-rising in the main square, very picturesque! In the end we manage to change our return ticket and in the evening we get to Playa del Carmen! We walk along the Quinta Avenida (the main street in Playa) and with our Mexican friends, we go to dance at the "Blue Parrott" disco till the morning. Nick, who was drunk performed funny shows during the night.

We decided to take a whole days rest before the next strep! At 4.30 am iI thought to myself that we really deserved 24 hour break!

06 may Playa del Carmen (MEXICO)

At last a long sleep and then everybody on the beach! The sun hits us!

[Nick]: "Tomorrow we are leaving for Chetumal... I know it will be very tiring but I'm looking forward to starting the Belizian experience! I trust Mark a lot and his traveller experience... he "studied" this part of the journey... It's wonderful seeing your travel mates supporting you and following you in your plans, I'm talking about the first part of the journey ("studied" by me), Mark and Carlo often trusted me and my "studies"! "


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