July 02, 2009 GMT
The Gulf of Mexico

It felt good to be riding unaccompanied, even though we missed the company of the Frenchies, we could speed up where we wanted, slow down where we wanted, and stop where we wanted. The weather was as gorgeous as the scenery as we rode north up the Yucatan Peninsula and towards the Gulf of Mexico. We had never seen this side of the country and when we finally came to the beach road, the turquoise blue waters of the Gulf welcomed us in an unforgettable way.
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Following the coastal road, we soon came across a small restaurant right on the beach, so we pulled over, parked up and went and sat on a table on the sand, hastily removed our boots, rolled up our jeans, and went paddling in the warm Gulf waters. We shared a lemonade and enjoyed the calming sounds of the water lapping the white-sand shore before booting up and riding along the coast. We detoured into the town of Sebaplaya, just because it was there, and also it meant we could ride the costal road a little further. The latter was far more important than the former.
It was here that we came across the bullring. We weren’t sure at first exactly what this huge wicker basket looking building was. It looked like it had just been put up, was made of wood and covered in palms, it reminded me of “the Thunderdome” in the Mad Max movie. We found a spot by the side of the road to park the bike and went over to the ring to get a closer look. We had arrived just in time to the matadors get ready to enter the ring, and the bulls getting moved into position outside. We were in prime position right at the gate to see the grand entrance of the matadors, and the release of the first bull.
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We asked around and were told that the bullfights would go on for three days, so we jumped back on Garth and headed north once more for the last 60 miles to Campeche. We found a nice cheap hostel in the centre of the city and unpacked the essentials. We parked the bike out side and pulled out the bike cover, it felt safe as houses so we didn’t worry much about anything happening to Garth overnight.
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The Castillon at Campeche

We met some fellow travellers in the hostel who said they had seen us on the road and had basically been following the same route as us for the past few days, passing us, or being passed by us, on several occasions. We all wet out for some street tacos together, and wandered round the city, we talked about the bullring and the guys said to they ‘d like to come too. So, the next day, we headed back to Seybaplaya , bought hot dogs, beer, tickets and chips,and took our seats for the bullfight.
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We had been too late to see any bullfights, the Mexican season ending in March, with the Matadors basing themselves in Spain for the Spanish season. I had wanted to go to a bullfight well before I had ever thought of going to Mexico, and was full of nervous excitement of what was to come.
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Run Forrest, RUN!

I was intrigued, and to the distain of my fellow travellers, quite enjoyed the spectacle, Jacquie stayed for the first fight, then left, then the Aussies from the hotel left, leaving me feeling quite guilty and alone in our terrace seats. I watched one more fight, during which one of the matadors had to run for his life from a bull that had him in his sights, and then went and rejoined Jacquie and the guys to return to the hotel, and a slightly more “civilised” night in town.
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Posted by Dan Shell at July 02, 2009 08:35 PM GMT
 


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