Saturday, June 13, 2009
6/13/09 Tulum, Bribing Cops With Gatorade, and off to Chichen Itza
I wake up not knowing what time it is as my cheap-ass watch has been lost/stolen several days ago in Flores. It ends up being 10:30 am which is a late start to my plans which includes a stop at the gas station, post office, ruins at Tulum, and then to Chichen Itza 2 hours away where I'll get a room and possibly see the ruins there in the late afternoon. I guess I was just a little too comfortable sleeping in that wonderful AC-cooled room. I eat the complimentary breakfast (which is great), grab my stuff to store behind the bar until I return from the ruins, and hop on my bike for a quick trip to the gas station and post office. At the end of the street I get stopped by a local cop for not wearing a helmet and he says I'm getting a ticket and have to pay the 5 bucks or so at the police station the next day. I'm pretty pissed at the pettiness and inconvenience of it all as I'm trying to do a lot of shit today and this guy has got me standing out in the already blazing sun for some BULLSHIT. Trust me when I say that not wearing a helmet down here and getting stopped is like getting a ticket for jaywalking in the States. I start to get visibly annoyed at the whole thing when another cop pulls up and talks to his buddy for a minute. He then says to me in passable English that I won't be getting a ticket today but they would love some Gatorade. Orange. Cool. Get the Gatorade, walk back to the hostel for my helmet, get gas, send postcards to my folks, and I'm off to the ruins. this is another "I'll let the pictures do the talking bit." I will say that although I've been to much larger and more spectacular ruins, the tiny ruins of Tulum and the cliffside beach setting makes them my favorite by far. I get back to the hostel, wait around for a while cause it is HOT at this point, load up the bike and 2 hours later I'm in Piste, a town by the ruins at Chichen Itza. Check into a place where I have a private bungalow for 12 bucks, get some food, and chill in the OXXO which is a 7-11-like chain. I choose to hang out there because they have little tables and chairs, coffee and snacks, and most importantly by far, cold-ass AC. Tomorrow I'll get up early to beat the heat and tourists and go to Chichen Itza, the most famous and well-preserved of the Mayan ruins and then head off to my last real stop in Mexico, the ruins at Uxmal.