Saturday, November 13, 2010

my kind of town

I am in Mexico.  No doubt about it.

Geckos chirping to attract mates.  Clear skies.  Pleasant temperatures.

But everything else today was new to me.

We were up early to catch the ferry to the mainland to pick up our rental car.  And pick it up we probably could.  It was small enough.  The tires seem to have been borrowed from a grocery trolley.

But it is just the right size for squeezing through urban traffic in Merida -- and into tight parking spaces.

The urban experience, however, was four hours in our future.  Between Cancun and Merida was a long stretch of road through the Yucatan scrub jungle.  I think I now know how a mole feels tunneling through a lawn.

Islagringo and I laughingly tried my new GPS.  Laughingly, because we could have used a ruler and a sheet of paper to draw our route.  The road is that flat and straight.

Anyone who has made the trip knows there is not much to report outside of the car.  Inside, we had a great conversation about the type of things two guys discuss on a road trip.

We are staying at La Reforma Hotel.  The hotel reminds me a lot of Venice.  Aging, but with grace.  If it came to life, it would probably be a dowager duchess.

The rooms are hardly luxurious.  But four rooms open onto a lovely terrace living space.  You can see it at the top of this post.

After checking in, we headed over to the English Library for the bloggers' conference meet and greet.  And we did exactly that. 

I met new people who write blogs I have not yet read.  I met a couple of people who have commented on my blog over the years.  And, of course, I met some people, like Jonna and Mimi, who are directly responsible for my adventure in Mexico.

For me, the most interesting aspect of these gatherings, is that we may not have met before in person, but we know each other well enough we can launch into conversations as if we had been friends for years.  Which, of course, we have.

After the meet and greet, Jonna and Mimi invited me to attend an art gallery exhibition.  Even though we have some differing views on art, it was great simply to have that type of conversation.  That, in itself, was a new Mexican experience.

I am now back in the hotel.  The hotel lobby, actually.  There is no internet in the rooms.

As soon as I finish this post, I will complete my speaker notes for tomorrow.  And head to bed.

It is going to be a full day of blogomania.


Karen said...

Can not wait to hear all your observations of this area of Mexico, we have had property there for 2 years and love it so much! Soon to be down there more than just a few weeks at a time. Having made the drive through the jungle many times I laughed at your comments. Yes, there is not much to see. How fun to meet fellow bloggers, I love the blogs about this area and read them every day. Enjoy your time in the Yucatan.

Calypso said...

You are giving a talk? - now that I see they would let just anyone get up and pontificate - I wish I had gone.

But seriously - have fun amigo.

Would like to hear about your new GPS gizmo - probably have a good report after the sojourn and the move about down there.

Anonymous said...

your comment about the hotel reminding you of venice brought back memories. when i was in guadalajara a few years ago, i felt like i was in italy, to the point where one morning i almost started speaking italian to some of the people that work there.

can't wait to see your pictures of this trip! did you say hi to wayne for me?

enjoy the rest of the weekend.


Anonymous said...

Old Duck, I have made that flat, straight trip to Merida, one my favorite cities. But I made part of it in a bus that played chicken with oil tankers in the other lane. Very narrow road if I recall correctly.

Check out the murals in the governor's building. They are magnificent pieces.

Also, if you have time, see if the Grand Hotel is still operating. It is an Edwardian period piece with a wonderful atrium and renaissance staircase.

And what are you giving a talk about? The thin line between dream-state and operating on full bonkers?


Steve Cotton said...

Karen -- Islagringo has quite a trip lined up for me. The problem will be finding time to write about it -- and to do it justice.

Calypso -- Wish you were here. Your experience with intellectual property would help. I am on deck in about an hour. So far, the GPS is really handy in town. But it does not have a lot of secondary roads in rural areas.

Teresa -- I am glad to hear I am not the only person to suffer spatial dislocation. But I understand the urge to slip into Italian. Have done it myself.

ANM -- The toll road lacks the adventure of the free road to Meroda. But even it has greatly improved. Of course, I realize you were here with Cortés. Things have changed.