I’ve been extremely lucky over the past two weeks, since I got myself entangled into a big network of cyclists. From Hermosillo until Culiácan, over 700 kilomters, I did not have to worry about a place to stay. I could stay in either a house or hotel from friends/acquaintances of cyclists. Almost every day, someone showed me the highlights of the city/villages that I encountered. I felt a king on state visit.
For example: I arrived in Guaymas after approximately 90 kilometres, where Edgar was expecting me and picked me up. We ate some seafood together, he showed me highlights of the city and then brought me to a hotel from an acquaintance. In the meantime, he already notified the person in the next town, Obregón.
The highways are unfortunately much worse than I’m used to. There is a lot of construction work. Consequently, there were many sections with just one lane, without separation of the lane with the other traffic. Pretty dangerous for cyclists. I could avoid a frontal collision on the last moment, because a stupid driver thought he was able to pass another car. After 120 km, I arrived in Obrégon, a bit too far in this heat actually, I was a bit dehydrated. Once again, I was being received by Oscar, another cyclist, in his restaurant. He then took me to a bike shop of friends where they quickly checked my bike. Afterwards, I once again was sent to an hotel.
Eduardo received me in the third village, once again in a bike shop. Two friends of him, Abraham and Roica, took me to the historic place of Álamos, while Eduardo insited to fix my flat tires. I’d never heart of the place, but it has an important historic background. It once was the state’s capital, and was founded after the discovery of the copper mines in the region.
Sight vanaf Álamos
After we returned, I was being transported to an hotel once again (!), and I could sleep in a fancy room that they kept vacant for cyclists like me. I was really amazed by everything that occurred to me over the past couple of days. Eduardo invited me to the birthday party of his brother. My plan was to say hi to their family, have one drink together and go to bed afterwards… but it just does not work that way. It turned into a long night.
Abraham and Rocio
I noticed that very few people use their smartphones during the party. Everybody is talking to each other and/or dancing. I friendly thanked for the dancing part. I noticed that there is a certain lawlessness in Mexico. Under the watchful eye of the police, it is apparently normal to drink and drive, to have people in the back of a pick-up truck on an interstate and to use a car that barely works.
In the next village, Diego and Olymar were happily waiting for me. Olymar immediately told me that he has a ticket for me at the spa of his sister in Culiacán. It looks like my network doesn’t end. I went with Diego and two other friends to the top of a mountain that was nearby. I asked Diego if the fact that he has one I was not a restriction for getting a drivers license. He laughed at me and said that that’s no problem in Mexico. You just have to buy your driver’s license. Not medical check, no practical exam. That might explain the recklessness of some drivers on the road.
In the four long and hot days that followed, I made my way to Culiacán. Every day along the way, new bike friends were waiting for me. Here a short overview of what I experienced, it’s just too much to write down:
Multiple mornings in a row, I was accompanied by cyclists
Election debate with Carlos, I might become mayor next month
Together with the catrinas, the local femine bike group
In Culiacán, I took a rest day, because an attenuated hurricane that made it rain all day long. I went to that spa to recharge my battery, and checked out the botanical garden and cathedral in the city center. In the meantime, the world championchip of football has started. Since the Netherlands is not participating, I’m happily cheering for Mexico. They surprised everyone by winning the opening game against the current world champion, Germany. ¡Vamos con todo!
In the restaurant of Emanuel, who let me taste the best food in town
Right after the opening goal of Mexico, which turned out to be the winning one