Poking around the Puuc Part 2 - We'll Follow the Sun - CycleBlaze

December 7, 2018

Poking around the Puuc Part 2

We are well and truly ruined for other ruins we think!

Well now, this was a truly spectacular day in every way possible!  After being sick we appreciate so much more our feeling well and being able to cycle in a way we are used to - hallelujah!

The day began with breakfast, which is always scrumptious at the Pickled Onion.  Honestly, if you are coming this way, you absolutely MUST stay here! The hospitality is great, the food is great and the accomodations are fantastic.  All of this topped off by a wonderful hostess, Valerie Pickle, who is just full of information about the region as well as funny stories about her life here.  She is a gem and so is this very special place.  We are so very thankful that we made it a priority to come here.  Warning.  If you do want to stay, book your reservations well in advance - its a hot commodity!  

Back to breakfast.  We got to sit down once again with our new friends, Iris and Bernhard.  We had planned to eat early at 7:30 so as to get away to Uxmal before all the tourist busses showed up.  However, sitting and chatting with these two, we totally lost track of time and before we knew it 8:30 had rolled around.  We said our goodbyes and grabbed our bikes to head off for the slightly longer ride along the Ruta Puuc to Uxmal, a much larger and important ruin than Kabah that we saw yesterday.  It was like a little teaser for us.  The ride was lovely and we enjoyed the rolling hills, flowers blooming along the roadside and shade from the many trees along the road - perfect cycling conditions!  

On our way!
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This is pretty much what you get on the Ruta Puuc! Pretty nice!
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We were soon at the ruins and parked our bikes.  After a little bit of trouble getting the tickets (their wifi wasnt' working to use our credit card and we didn't have enough cash because their bank machine was also off-line! All was soon sorted as everything was up and running- hurray!), we first visited the very interesting educational center where we learned that water collection and preservation was an important part of all Mayan structures.  It seems odd, given that this is a jungle, but fresh water was a big issue and their methods for collecting and keeping it were pretty advanced.  We could learn a thing or two from the Mayans I am thinking!

After this brief visit, it was time to head into the actual site at Uxmal and it did not disappoint!  Bernhard and Iris had been there the day before and commented that they enjoyed this visit much more than the larger but more commercialized Chichen Itza.  We are spending Christmas there, so will be able to make our own judgements, but I have to say, it would be hard to beat the magical quality of Uxmal.  We spent several hours wandering all over, looking in small and larges spaces and finding different ways to view the magnificent pyramid.  The day remained slightly cloudy with a light breeze, so never got too hot, thank goodness! Here are a few pics of the hundreds that we took today.  There are no words to describe what an absolutely fantastic experience it was for us!

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Sorry, Katie, they don't actually allow for clinbing up this one!
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Again with the lizards!
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Waiting for the game to start
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The Mayan ball game, that is!
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Restorations in progress
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This is the governor's palace which overlooks the great pyramid. The details in the carvings are exquisite!
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Now these you can climb - and we did!
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Tiffany EllisonMust feel weird like ur gonna fall down or something . Like vertigo. Dunno if I would hazard it. But if you're there u guess u gotta!
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1 month ago
This could be a turkey vulture - Annie?
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Annie HeppI hope so!
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3 months ago
Sue PriceTo Annie HeppThere was a turkey vulture perched up on top of the pyramid for most of the day, so I bet they were an important part of the culture.
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3 months ago

A view from the top!
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Jim making his way down - they are VERY steep steps!
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Michael ReynoldsIt's like climbing down the third level at Safeco Field, only with no handrails!
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3 months ago
Sue PriceTo Michael ReynoldsMaybe Jim's getting ready to hit Michigan's stadium next year!
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3 months ago
Tiffany EllisonYa this is what I'm talking about , scary! I have trouble with the stairs at the skytrain lol.
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1 month ago



After we finished at the ruin, we enjoyed the boxed lunch that had been provided for us by the Pickled Onion (yep, another plug for them!).  Satisfied, we crossed the street to go through the History of Chocolate museum. This very small but very interesting museum is spread out over a beautiful property.  Each little building gives you a different aspect of how important chocolate was to the Mayans an how it got to be what we know today.  Along the way, we also got to enjoy and participate in a Mayan ceremony, we are assuming it has to do with chocolate, but it was interesting to see!  After the ceremony we were able to see a demonstration of how chocolate was fermented, dried and crushed to become something we are more familiar with.  We each got to try a cup of  hot chocolate the way the Mayans would have enjoyed it and then could spice with up with chili or sugar.  We enjoyed our drinks but since it was pretty warm out already, declined to finish them.  

At the end of the tour came the samples of Mayan chocolate that were for sale, so of course, a couple of bars made their way into our bag to take back and eat later - hopefully they don't melt before we can enjoy them!

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Now that's one spikey looking tree!
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Bill ShaneyfeltMaybe kapok?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceiba_pentandra
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3 months ago
Sue PriceTo Bill ShaneyfeltI'm thinking you're correct! Shhhh! Don't tell Chris!
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3 months ago
I love these little guys!
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Bill ShaneyfeltThey look a lot like our box elder bugs but lots less red.
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3 months ago
Sue PriceTo Bill ShaneyfeltAh! I asked my biologist daughter for her input and it appears to be a red-shouldered bug, which is often confused with the box elder, so you were on the right track, Bill! Do you have any idea about that crazy spikey tree?
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3 months ago
Bill ShaneyfeltTo Sue PriceSounds like a winner!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jadera_haematoloma
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3 months ago
Tiffany EllisonIs that a cockroach?!
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1 month ago


The ride back to the Pickled Onion was much the same as the ride out - rolling hills, lots of shade from the overhanging trees so that even though it was near 3:00 we were not ever too hot.  It was the best we have felt since we arrived here in Mexico and we are thankful that we had this wonderful day that we can now add to!

Back at the ranch we sat by the pool with a couple of well-earned beers before showering and having an afternoon siesta.  This is a part of Mexican life that we have taken to quite quickly!  Our last dinner at the Pickled Onion was enjoyed by us both before we wished our hostess, Valerie a goodnight.  Some time to catch up on the blog and other news and we were back in our room for a couple of hands of gin before turning in.

Tomorrow we catch the bus (hopefully) down to Campeche to begin our adventures down there.  Stay tuned!

Today's ride: 38 km (24 miles)
Total: 148 km (92 miles)

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