“Travels to a Different Time” : 7September1989: Cancun, Mexico: Climbing the Temple of Kukulcán Deep in the Jungle

Today off to the Mayan ruins at Chicen Itza the famous Mayan architectural site. Our bus was to leave at 8:15 but arrived at 8:45 and I was not pleased with the crappy seat at the back of the bus. I recall a horrific back of the bus trip in Yugoslavia in 1973. Pure hell. There were two seats near the front which were unoccupied and the tour guide refused to let me have a seat. At the last bus stop he gave the seat away to a person getting on the bus. I was really pissed off. Exiting Cancun I realized this is a big town with a population of 400,000. It started as a malaria infested swamp in 1970 with a population of 160. It is enveloped in choking diesel fumes. The environment would have better off without it. The destructive force of tourism.

The Mayan communities we passed are simple structures with thatched roofs and hammocks. The Mayans are dark skinned, short with small necks. They are barefoot. The bus stopped to pick up some beer and soft drinks and we were on our way. A lunch stop at a gringo buffet at the “Hotel Mayaland”. A decent lunch of corn, squash, pork, chicken and a flan for dessert. The ruins were incredible and perhaps only a picture can describe them. I climbed the steep Temple of Kukulcán with a spectacular view of the jungle below. How many human sacrifices were made where I was standing? It was relatively easy ascending but many gringos had a terrifying trip down as the stairs were so narrow. A few people are seriously injured every year tumbling down. The trip back saw me with a good seat. Beer and soft drinks on the way back were appreciated as the terrible humidity flattens you. You can drink like a camel but you sweat it out. Not to be vulgar but you can drink a gallon and never have to pee. It comes out as sweat. Back at 7 and it had been a long day. No tip to the guide due to his seat discrimination. I should have greased his palms to start the trip. I think they call it mordida a way of life in a corrupt country and who can best afford it? Gringos!

Published by Robert K Stephen (CSW)

Robert K Stephen writes about food ,drink, travel, film, and lifestyle issues. He also has published serialized novels "Life at Megacorp", "Virus # 26, "Reggie the Egyptian Rescue Dog" and "The Penniless Pensioner" Robert was the first associate member of the Wine Writers’ Circle of Canada. He also holds a Mindfulness Certification from the University of Leiden and the University of Toronto. Be it Spanish cured meat, dried fruit, BBQ, or recycled bamboo place mats, Robert endeavours to escape the mundane, which is why he has established this publication. His motto is, "Have Story, Will Write."

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