Puebla - Valle - Monterrey - San Antonio

Trip Start Mar 29, 2009
Trip End Aug 29, 2010

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Flag of United States  , Texas
Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Saturday 3rd July. Puebla - Valle. 541 ks.
We are finding many new words in the Mexican/Spanish vocabulary and as a consequence we had garlic soup and lettuce salad for dinner last night! We did enjoy it though, on a 2nd floor balcony overlooking the central garden plaza/square, a favourite place where people meet to catch up and families get together as we have discovered all through Central America. Dusk came and soon the whole square was lit up to shine on the colourful ceramic clad buildings and sparkle on the cream and gold church domes.
Today we headed out of town at an ungodly hour. Foremost in our minds was to avoid the Mexican Federal District since we didn't understand the pollution rules and restricted driving on alternate days. And we did miss it, by a whisker! Huge fines of hundreds of dollars can be incurred, especially if you are tourists... more in the Boy's Blog.
Leaving Puebla this morning we were disappointed that Volcano Malinche, 4461m, a famous and much photographed volcano was hiding behind a sea of misty cloud. 
We saw dirty industrial  pollution lying stagnant in some of the valleys south and east of Mexico City.
Off up the PAH, in and out of villages.... often, our tyres smoking when suddenly we realise we are almost upon one of those frequent, inconspicuous speedbumps.  Soon to be winding our way through pristine and beautiful scenery as we traversed mountains gorges and valleys, passing through alpine villages nestled into the mountain sides. Superb roads, superb landscape. A superb day.

Sunday 4th July. Valle - Monterrey. 524ks.
Away before 7am this morning, hot, balmy and far too early to find anywhere open for a coffee. Best not to be the first coffee customers of the day at a petrol station either!
From the forest and into agricultural Mexico with the army out in force supervising local elections in the San luis Potosi province.  Another hot day, 31* mid morning.  Progressing into Victoria, south of Monterrey, we saw the grim damage Hurricane Alex caused on 29/6/10.
Trees uprooted, broken traffic lights, flooding, roof damage, power lines and poles down. Mainly extensive wind damage that seemed to be quite localised.
Further north, melons, tangerines and mangos (our favourite) for sale roadside.
We arrived Monterrey at 3.30pm, found a hotel in the centre of town, donned our walking shoes and set off. Not for long though, the temperature was 36*. Our hotel wasn't far from River Santa Catarina, the river that broke it's banks whilst Hurricane Alex wreaked havoc. A years worth of rainfall in three days left a tragic trail.
And on a lighter note, our last night in Mexico was spent on the top floor, the 8th floor of our hotel, overlooking this sparkling Monterrey quenching our thirst with margaritas and tequilas. Minus the worms.

Monday 5th July. Monterrey - San Antonio. 480ks.
From Monterrey to the Mexican/US border we travelled 234ks through flat unproductive scrubland. And very excited we were knowing we were going to be popping out into North America today.
Any preconceived ideas of Mexico being a dry dusty desert with macho men wearing sombreros have been laid to rest. The landscape is mostly (up the PAH) lush forest and agricultural and the blokes tend to wear huge straw cowboy hats. We loved Mexico and it's people. Not for a moment have we felt unsafe - avoiding dangerous towns and heeding advice about not to wander around after 10pm.
Through the border in 2 and a half hours. Easy. The only hassles being finding the right offices to go to.
North America. How strange, no cattle wandering the motorway. San Antonio - sad to see just about all the old buildings in the city have been pulled down and replaced by modern structures. Everything about San Antonio is huge, spacious and wide,  (roads and buildings) - I guess we're really noticing it after some of the small overpopulated villages and towns we have experienced.

Tuesday 6th July. San Antonio.
Truck to Toyota today for a big overhaul whilst I had one of my own, a temporary crown, after nursing a broken tooth from Mexico. The dentist (Mexican) only had a gold one. It sits next to my eye tooth. Not a good look.
36*. Too hot for striding the pavements sightseeing without ducking into every shop that has air conditioning. Kills two birds with one stone.

Wednesday 7th July. San Antonio.
Our very grubby truck had a superior car wash this morning in readiness for heading out of town tomorrow.
Still an enervating 36*.
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26927 on

Hi guys---------------yep love the sign at the dentist,s Susie. USA at last> Well done

Angela Davidson on

Bummer about the tooth! Probably a Black Russian could have helped considerably! Trip sounding fantastic ....enjoy!

barbara-aaron on

Hi Susie & Dave! Welcome to America!!Very exciting & wow what a fantastic adventure through South America!You poor thing-breaking a tooth!!Was it on a lolly??Hope the temp crown is ok.Can't believe the temperatures you are having!Sounds soo summery especially because its the middle of winter here :(
Have fun guys!Sending you lots of love & hugs,Barbara & Aaron xxxxxxxxxxxxxx

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