Thoughts and Adventures in Mexico

I’ve been ill. This is not an excuse for not writing. I’ve been busy. This is only half true. The truth is that prior to being ill, Mitch and I spent our time working, eating breakfast on the roof in Oaxaca, drinking in wine bars in San Cristobal and hanging out in the jungle in Palenque.

Bottle of wine on a Friday night in San Cristobal

We’ve been in Mexico for over three months now and have one month remaining.  We’ve had some wonderful experiences which I will write about, at some point. For now though, here are some more thoughts on our travels and what we’ve been up to.

 

Where Are You Now in Mexico?

Mitch and I are now in Tulum which is in the Yucatan Peninsula. This is by far the most touristy town we’ve visited so far and the peninsula, in general, is full of sun-seekers and holiday-makers. We’re staying in Tulum town because it’s way cheaper than the beach. There is a hippy, backpacker vibe in some of the town which is nice but also means some inflated prices. It’s over 30 degrees and super humid so I’m looking forward to going to the beach at the weekend and working on my non-existant tan – which still won’t exist after the weekend.

Tulum has a laid back but touristy vibe

What Have you Been doing in Mexico?

After exploring some cities to the west and north of Mexico City, we then headed south. We stopped off in Puebla, which was lovely, then headed down the windy roads to Oaxaca. I loved Oaxaca. It was incredibly hot but a lovely town to explore. With trendy cafes, a big art scene and some fine mezcal, we enjoyed nearly two weeks in the city. The highlight was our Airbnb host taking us to a local mezcal distillery.

 

Drinking mezcal in the countryside

After Oaxaca, we were happy to arrive in the cooler town of San Cristobal. The problem was, it was such a dramatic temperature change that Mitch and I both caught a cold. Before the cold set in, we enjoyed the lively pedestrian streets and the numerous cheap wine bars. It rained a lot while we were in San Cristobal but we still managed to take a day trip to visit the beautiful Sumidero Canyon and Monte Alban.

 

 

San Cristobal had a lot of beautiful churches
Sumidero Canyon

Before leaving the region of Chiapas, we headed north to Palenque. The town of Palenque is small but the draw to the area is the archaeological site. We opted to stay in the jungle near the archaeological site because it was dirt cheap and a fun experience. It would have been more fun if I hadn’t been sick and if there hadn’t been a massive thunderstorm, but still, I’m very glad we went. We also met a couple from San Fransisco who we spent some time with, always great to make friends on the road.

The ruins of Palenque
New friends at the ruins (and an awkward self-timed photo)

When are you back in the UK?

Mitch and I fly back to the UK on July 3rd. We found a cheap flight from Cancun to Glasgow so thought we should take the opportunity to see some of the UK before arriving back in Bristol. We’ll spend a couple of days in Glasgow (Scotland was on my top places to visit in 2017!) before slowly making our way back to Bristol via Newcastle and Manchester.

Final Thoughts

There’s a lot going on back home at the moment. The general election is tomorrow and there have been three terror attacks in our wonderful home country. It’s very odd being out of the country for these events, I feel disconnected and emotional and totally unsure what to do, apart from check that people I know are safe. Mitch summed it up well, I think:

Since Helen and I left home three months ago, the UK has been attacked three times. At times like these, my country feels far away.

It’s not, of course. The world is smaller these days. You can travel further for cheaper, experience other cultures easier, and access information quicker. So when the UK is attacked, when Syria is attacked, when Afghanistan is attacked, when France is attacked, it’s not that far away at all.

I am thankful to be connected to the UK right now. I am thankful that it is not so far away. I am thankful for a smaller world because, ultimately, the smaller the world is the less we will be able to argue with each other.

And if this small world can agree on two things, it’s that brutality is stupid and that kindness is the greatest of all human traits. We are not as different as we often think we are.

I adore travelling and I’ve had a wonderful time in Mexico, enjoying its culture, diversity and of course, food. However, I am looking forward to coming back to the UK and feel connected and close to my family and friends.

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