5th Jan 2012
When I was in Guadalajara, I wondered how I could go to Mexico city. The highest mount in Korea is 1,950 m (6397 ft) and it is called Halla mount. Mexico city is at an altitude of 2,240 m (7,350 ft). I was looking at an altitude map to avoid big mount. My plan was Guadalajara (4th Jan)->Tototlan->La Piedad->Irapuato->Queretaro->San Juan del Rio->De Allende->Mexico city(13th)
There are two big uphills on my way and it made me hard. But the downhill is so exciting.
The photo is to celebrate over 4,000 km (2,500 mi)
The road is uphill all the way around La piedad. When I take the rest, I see a little cute donkey.
Soon, Owner of the donkey shows up and he ride it. I wish I ride a horse.
We ride a bike almost together. We alternate in the lead for one hour. I am still slow. haha
I am so exhausted because of few uphills today. When I arrive in La Piedad, I find that some event is waiting me. I can check it a few days later. Anyway, I take a shower and have a dinner. It is Enchiladas.
January 6th is Three Kings Day in Mexico, known as the Día de Reyes. It is real Christmas day to the Mexican children. This is Epiphany on the church calendar, the 12th day after Christmas, when the Magi arrived bearing gifts for baby Jesus. In Mexico children receive gifts on this day, brought by the three kings, los Reyes Magos, Melchor, Gaspar, and Baltazar. Some children receive gifts from both Santa Claus and the Kings, but Santa is seen as an imported custom, and the traditional day for Mexican children to receive gifts is January 6.
The day before is eve of Three Kings day. Every parents are so busy to be ready gifts for their children. I go to meet Laura’s family. Laura is my host.
On Kings Day or eve it is customary to eat Rosca de Reyes, a sweet bread shaped like a wreath, with candied fruit on top, and a figurine of a baby Jesus baked inside. The person who finds the figurine is expected to host a party on Día de la Candelaria (Candlemas), celebrated on February 2nd, when tamales are served.
Laura’s mother is cutting Rosca de Reyes.
They say if I put my shoes under the tree, Kings will put money. I’ve never heard Kings Day before. But I enjoy their culture.
6th Jan 2012
Laura’s uncle has a horse farm. So, I visit there with Laura’s cousins whom I met yesterday.
I ride a horse one time in the US, so it is not my first time. But at that time it was just a few minute. This time is different. Carlos who is Laura’s cousin teaches me how to ride a horse.
I am afraid at first, so Carlos sits on the back.
I feel like that I will fall down when the horse is running.
Later, I ride the horse by myself.
I learn how to stop it, turn left and turn right. Even, I know how I can run with the horse. At first, I have a little bit pain on my hip. But the more I ride the horse, I am so excited.
The next turn is Laura and Arturo who is Carlos’s brother.
It is Arturo.
Carlos ride a horse very well. When he was a child, his father had a horse and he used to ride a horse.
It is a horse farm.
We go to look around the city, later. Today is the Three Kings Day. I can see many children holding gifts. Children make their letter to the Three Kings, then tie it to a balloon and let it go.
La piedad church is the biggest dome in the country. I am wondering we can go up. So, my host ask somebody and they let us go up.
It is Arturo, Carlos and Laura from the left.
The biggest dome in the country
There are so many snacks on the road in Mexico. They enjoy eating chips with a hot sauce.
The central emblem is the Aztec pictogram for Tenochtitlan (now Mexico City). The meanings of the colors are adapted to represent hope (green), unity (white) and the blood of the national heroes (red).
Laura drives to a high place to show me heir town. The left church in the above picture is the place we visit.
My La Piedad friends.
Laura wants me to check my route but it is too short. I have a more distance to go by bike. Carlos points where we are.
7th Jan 2012
The first day, when I arrived in La Piedad, somebody waved their hands. So, I smiled to them. But I found Laura called a news reporter and he was waiting to interview me. At that time, I was so exhausted and I didn’t look good. Carlos translated for me from English to Spanish. And today morning, I get a news paper which I am on. I was supposed that it would be very small on the paper. But I am on the whole paper. I am so excited. I get three papers. One is for me and another is for the later and the other is for my Culiacan family.
I am going to Irapuato.
One of Mexican friends introduces me his friend. I take this picture while waiting a host in front of their house. It looks a so normal picture. But I am always so sad when I am thinking of it. A little cute girl wearing pink shoes dumpsters dive. I can’t understand why it happens in the world. I am wondering she got gifts from the Three King on 6th January.
I stay just one day in Irapuato.
8th Jan 2012
The road is up and down all the way. It is the first time that I don’t take any picture. When I can’t take a nice picture, then I give it up. The same Mexican friend introduce his friend and I stay for one day.
9th Jan 2012
Queretaro is a tourist place. I was supposed to stay over two nights in Queretaro, but I changed a plan to stay just one day. I sent warm showers member a message and I got a message back yesterday. They will show me around their town today morning. They are owner of the furniture.
Ana and Eduardo say that they can host me, tonight. But I want to go to Mexico city as soon as possible. So I make a plan that I look around the town in the morning and ride a bike in the afternoon to go to San Juan del Rio. It is over 50 km (31 mi) from Queretaro to San Juan del Rio. Ana and Eduardo say to me “let’s look around the town slowly and we will give you a ride to the next city”
Queretaro looks so peaceful.
It is Indian dancer, Conchero.
There are also many church in Queretaro.
There were too many people in Guadalajara, but in Queretaro it is so quiet. I love it.
There is free wifi around park and it is my first time to see free wifi in Mexico.
We go to a restaurant to eat brunch.
I choose Enchiladas queretana which Eduardo recommends. It is so delicious. I love Mexican food!!
It is a huge statue. Mexico history looks so complicating. In 1519, the first Spaniards arrived and absorbed the native peoples into Spain’s vast colonial empire. For three centuries, Mexico was a colony. After a protracted struggle Mexico declared its independence from Spain 1810. In 1846, the US invaded Mexico, ending two years later with Mexico ceding almost half of its territory to the United States. California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Texas and west colorado were Mexico territory. In 1876, Díaz became the new president and he was the president for 35 years. In 1910, The revolution was started by the people who was angry with their government. But 3 years later, their new president was killed by the Mexican army whom the US supported. In 1917, Revolution stared again by the people.
I want to know more Mexico History. But the internet doesn’t help. I think I can’t study on the internet. If I want to know more about it, then I should learn on the desk, not on online. Online is just like instant.
It was waterway, long time ago.
We go to a high place and I can see everything. The long bridge was waterway.
Eduardo and Ana want me to show the famous monolith. I put my bike on his car. He stops to eat something on our way. In the above picture, it is Gorditas
It is Esquite. In the north, they put cream or butter on it. But in the south, they put mayonnaise. To put Mayonnaise on it is totally better to me
It is the third tallest monolith in the world. The first tallest is Ayers Rock in Australia and the second one is Fandeasukar in Brazil. It is not crowd around Peña de Bernal and I love a quiet place.
In the above the picture it is Ana and Eduardo. Ana is so friendly and she likes to explain their culture and history. I enjoy talking with them.
We climb until beginning of monolith.
Peña de Bernal is over 50 km (31 mi) from Queretaro and Peña de Bernal is over 50 km (31 mi) to the next city. Thanks to Ana and Eduardo, they give me a ride to the next city. I love to be with them. They love outdoor and I hope we can meet again on the road.
I meet a new host in San Juan del Rio. But I just stay one day and there is not many time. My host mom cooks for me and we love to talk each other. I take the rest in San Juan del Rio for one night.
10th Jan 2012
It is totally hard start. There is no shoulder and too much truck on uphill from start. I am so tired. The most hard time is that some road looks downhill but it is not!!!
When I am resting, a familiar sight come into view. It looks like Jeju Island where I love in Korea
There are uphill from 7am to 2pm. I am so tired but I keep going and when I ride over 60 km(37 mi), finally I go to downhill. I am totally excited. The max speed is 70 km (43 mi) on downhill. The most exciting time is that downhill on my way. When I am so happy, I find the beautiful road with flower. I feel like I am on the heaven.
I ride a bike on downhill over 20 km (12 mi). After that, there is up and down. But when I am on mount, it is dangerous to go on downhill because of a curve.
I make a plan to stay one night in Tepiji. But when I arrive at there, I find it is not good to stay. My host in Mexico city sent me a message that they want to pick me up because of too much traffic in Mexico city. But I sent them a message that I can go by myself. When I find that Tepiji is not good to stay one night, I decide to ride a bike more and call them to ask to pick me up. When I ride over 120 km (75 mi) at 5pm, I stop at gas station. I borrow somebody cell phone to call host, but it doesn’t work. The people who lent his cell phone gives me a ride to Mexico city. It is complicating to find my host home. Anyway, when I arrive at host home, I feel so happy.
Mexico city mean many things to me. I couldn’t imagine that I could reach to Mexico city. Many people have told me Mexico is too dangerous. But I am middle of the Mexico.
I have to go more and it would be same. But I will find that I make it like today. It looks far away. But if I keep going, then it would be not far.
It is just middle of Mexico. But someday it would be south America, Africa, Europe, Asia, Oceania and home. Now, it’s time to enjoy.
English is not my first language. I want to learn English more. If you find any mistakes (such as words being used out of context, grammar, syntax, etc), please let me know. Thanks