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didn’t buy much; after twelve trips south, I have enough shirts, hammocks and Pan- ama hats to last the rest of my life. One day we ran out to the seaside village of Pro- gresso and rode along the Gulf Coast a short ways. All too soon, it was time to return to


Cancun and put Susanna on a plane back home. We left early in the morning to allow some time for a stop at Chichen Itza. I’d been there a couple of times earlier, but Susanna never had. The grounds were well groomed, and the various edifices are now roped off, so no more climbing up the pyra- mids. Vendors were all around, and it was pretty crowded—again, the Semana Santa holiday brought out a lot of Mexicans to visit the site. After a few hours there, we rode on to Cancun, This time the place Susanna reserved,


much to her surprise, turned out to be sort of a hostel. We had a tiny room with bath and a common kitchen. The hotel was clearly targeting the backpacking crowd. After a peaceful night, off to the airport before sunrise. We got there in time, said our goodbyes, and I headed back to Merida. As things worked out, it took Susanna three full days to get home due to weather delays here in Colorado. I spent one more night in Merida, took one last walk around the area, and turned to the north the next morning. I ended up getting back home in seven


riding days, tying my old record for return- ing from the Yucatan. It feels a little differ- ent after all these trips to know that there is a good hotel in the next town and how to get to it. I just rode steadily up the Gulf Coast, came inland a bit and ran toward Mexico City. I’m even getting a little used to navigating the highways in and near that huge city. It appears they are close to com- pleting a ring road around the city. I actu- ally ended up at the hotel I use for the Tultepec fireworks fiesta for my “near Mex- ico City” night. I did not see anything that gave me pause


as far as crime and violence in the country. I encountered a few roadblocks manned by troops but was waved through almost all of them. The one exception was a permanent


I ran into this group at a toll plaza as I neared Mexico City on my way North. They were from Guatenala, Michoacan and the Mexico City area. I encountered a number of Mexican riders on fairly late model BMWs. I never encountered any gringos on tour or any other airhead BMWs.


June 2016 BMW OWNERS NEWS 47


I may not be welcomed but at least I am tolerated! Outside of many large Mexican cities is the "Tolerance Zone". This one is outside of Campeche, on the Gulf Coast. The shady nightclubs, houses of ill repute and a motel or two are all grouped in one spot, away from the "respectable" part of town and where the authorities can keep an eye on things. Cancun's Tolerance Zone, at KM21 of the highway, has been shut down for a while and looks like the perfect set for a zombie movie!.


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