Tag Archives: The Hunger Games

Molango to Apizaco, Sunday, 28 October 2012, Day 117

Road block who would have guessed it was for a Religious run carrying the Madonna with my bad spanish I was certainly surprised 🙂

I woke up and fortunately it was dry today but it was still quite cold. I hit the road and it was still very misty or I was driving in the clouds but fortunately it started to clear and I could finally see where I was going and it was nice.

Crap Vision-ability

Plan on the page is to keep plugging away moving south to Antigua where I plan to have a rest and do some Spanish lessons as I have not got a clue what is going on around me and I am not at all comfortable with that. Today the road was blocked and I was trying to found out what was going on but my knowledge of Spanish is woeful so all I could do was wait. It turned out that it was some religious event the road was full of young people running down the street and a convoy of accompanying cars and lorries and they where carrying a statue of Mary I passed another one later. I am not sure I would have been able to understand the explanation for this holdup in English never mind in Spanish but it does explain why the petrol pump attendant when I asked about what was going on he crossed himself so there was the religious clue unfortunately at the time I had no idea what he was trying to tell me.

Good day in the saddle but I am not covering the ground as quickly as I think I should be I did more than yesterday but considering the hours I am putting in I am expecting to have gone much further. Slow going on these roads and village very rarely going fast at all. I think I gained an hour but I am not sure as have seen no clocks to verify this so at about 5pm ish according to the clock on my GPS which I think is right my right leg was beginning to cramp up no idea why could be all them damned speed humps or all the stop start riding I have been doing today so this was a sign to call it quits for the day as well as my GPS sending me on another off road excursion and getting chased by wild dogs was enough to tell me to stop for the day. So I ignored the GPS I did a U-turn only to be chased by the same wild dogs and decided to stop at the first decent place I saw. A couple of minutes later saw a nice old church and opposite a small hotel which had a courtyard for parking the bike so I pulled in there. Got a room no problem and extremely cheap but no Wi-Fi but who cares I can live with a night without Wi-Fi. I was in little village just short of Apicazo so not much there other than the church and the hotel so nowhere to eat. After wandering about for a while found a place that was cooking chickens on a rotisserie so ordered half a chicken and some papa’s fritas and got some pop and then back to the room to eat my little greasy feast. I had mushroom quesadilla for breakfast/lunch, which was also very nice.

Tonight’s entertainment was to finish the Hunger games on my Kindle. I quite enjoyed it easy reading and a page-turner but quite a simple plotI have  just downloaded part 2 and 3 so another excuse not to be doing my blog or responding to the comments on it. I will do this when I am back on line honest injun

Apizaco to Oaxaca, Monday, 29 October 2012, Day 118

Beautiful Dress made out of plastic cups and saucers !

Even scarier from the front

A good day in the saddle and I covered a lot more distance than I have been in the last couple of days so how did I do this well I cheated.

I got packed up and hit the road and the first thing I noticed in the distance was a couple of mountains but what surprised me most was that they both had snow on top of them! This was the last thing I was expecting I was not aware of Snow covered mountains in Mexico so I was a little confused for a while.

I needed a coffee and some breakfast, as it was quite chilly around 14 degrees and as soon as I drove into Apizaco I saw an OXXO which is sort of like the Mexican 7/11 so I had breakfast sitting on the pavement outside as they do good coffee and sandwiches but they do not always have somewhere to sit and consume your purchases.

View from my breakfast spot

So todays plan was to try and reach Oaxaca, which was going to be difficult if I was sticking to the type of roads, I have been using for the last couple of days with all the tope and reductions (Spanish words for them bloody speed bumps they have all over the place here killing my suspension slowly but surely me thinks and god knows what this is doing to the rest of the bike it cannot be good me thinks). So first thing I did was change the settings on my GPS to allow toll routes to be part of the route as I usually avoid these if possible but a change of tactic is called for if I am going to make any progress. By doing this I shortened the distance to Oaxaca by 40km, which is excellent, and the last 200km was on a Mexican toll road, which went through some breath taking scenery and no villages to slow me down for and no speed humps either so I could get some speed up and sustain it for a reasonable amount of time.

escaping the speed humps!

The downside was that I had to pay for the speed so as I joined the toll road they charged me 35 peso which I thought was excellent value as it was 200km still to go to Oaxaca but after about 30km another toll booth this time 25 peso and this kept happening regularly and later the distance got shorter but the price kept getting more. All in all buying this extra time cost me 190 pesos so about 10 EUR but well worth it as it was a really enjoyable run on empty roads with not having to worry about all the usual distractions and potential risks that you have driving through Mexican villages and countryside I could just enjoy the ride and the spectacular scenery. I had a laugh at each of the toll booths when they kept wanting more money for the next bit in broken Spanish I was telling them that I should be half price as they where charging me the same as a car as there was no motorcycle rates and also telling them I had already paid at the last booth. It kept me entertained for a while and some of them where also amused.

I have been to Oaxaca before about 15 years ago but I did not recognise the place it seem so much bigger and busier and the GPS was sending me in the opposite directions to what the signpost where telling me and so like a fool I followed the GPS but when it turned me down yet another dirt road I switched it of and asked the locals which was far more effective. I finally found the center but it was the middle of rush hour getting hot and I had no Mexican money left as used the last on the toll roads and credit cards are not used as much here especially in the places I have been staying cash is king. So after checking out one hotel to get a feel of the prices in town I plugged in ATM into my GPS and the first one I found again would not accept my card and the next one was on the main square but there was a huge festival going on there and the cops where not allowing any vehicles in but I showed one them on my GPS what I was looking for and I was allowed onto the square with my bike and they even watched my bike while I popped round the corner to the cashpoint. There suggestion not mine this was while they where trying to manage a full-blown crowd of revellers not sure what is going on as there where Incas dancers, Trade unionists, and Halloween or Night of the death festival all going on at the same time. This time the cashpoint gave me some money so back to the bike, which was parked on a one-way street and the only correct way out was across the square so the friendly coppers cleared a route for me through the revellers and I was on my way 🙂

I went a couple of blocks from the square and saw a Hostel with a drive in parking garage so pulled in there glad to be out of the traffic and checked out how much they wanted for a room for the night it was reasonable enough and the bike was in a secure manned car park so sorted.

So got out of my bike gear and went of to rediscover Oaxaca some of seemed familiar but I could not find the place I had stayed last time, as I was curious on what it would be like now.

I had a great evening just wandering around as mentioned in the main square was teaming with people and there was stage with what I thought was for either Halloween of night of the dead festival some great outfits on show. As well as that a political rally was taking place and something else with mariachi bands making a hell of a racket so great place to people watch. The rest of town was lively as well great market so I did some wandering taking in the sights. I still do not know what time it is I think I have gained an hour maybe the clocks changed on Sunday I do not know but it does not really matter as knowing what time it is is not a necessity that I have at the moment 🙂

I ended up back at the hotel where I downloaded the sequels to the Hunger Game very clever pricing scam they got going there. The first book is 5 bucks for kindle but books 2 and 3 are 9 bucks so they getting you hooked cheaply the 1st time round and you have to pay more once you are addicted very clever.

I am having problems uploading my Photos to Smug mug it is very rare that you get anywhere with a decent Internet connection or maybe I am just asking too much.