Thursday, 21 March 2013

Merida Day 15 - Mum and Dad settling in

Mum and Dad were pretty tired so basically spent the day around the house, reading in the patio area, swimming, lounging in the hammock. Mum's quote "It's a rough life, but someones got to do it". George and I walked up to Walmart, taking a different route and came back better stocked for 4 people and some white wine for Mum. We then joined them in the basic relaxing.
Our cleaning lady came today. She swept everywhere, rooms, patios etc. She then washed everywhere rooms, patios etc. She even washed the area where a car would be parked. Cleaned the kitchen etc.

As it was a pretty uneventful day  I thought I'd give you a bit of info about buses. Mum and Dad had the high end experience.  They missed the bus from the airport to Merida but bought a ticket at the airport for the one from downtown Cancun. They came from Cancun on ADO Platinum class. It cost them roughly $50 each for a 4 hour trip to Merida. They waited in a first class waiting area, with coffee and water provided. On the bus they were given water, headset and the remote for the TV on the seat in front of them. The seats were already reclined with a pillow and blanket and foot rest. The curtains were  drawn and they could sleep all the way.

Buses around Merida are run by various companies. It appears that they serve different areas. Ours is Citybus and is pale blue. We were nervous about using them because they whip past so fast and it is hard to determine where they go. The guide book indicates that you can buy a route map downtown but we have been unable to find one and everyone we have spoken to has told us that they are very hard to read and only show the route in one direction (because of all the one way streets they cannot just return the same way).

Their routes are written on the windshield. Some handwritten some quite neatly, others not. We assume that the bus starts at the first place listed and ends at the last one.  However some have handwritten additions that we are not sure where in the route they fit. Some appear to have route numbers, others, on the same route, don't. We have come to recognise our bus route but some I still check by asking the bus driver if they go along cuarante nueve. They supposedly pick up only at corners though we have been aboard when they screech to a halt mid block for someone on the run.

The condition of their bumpers says something about the driving style. Bus drivers seem to treat their city like a race track. We are always really impressed by how well they know the space they can get through and at what speed we get to our destination. Now that we have used them regularly we are quite comfortable on our own route
There are some really rough looking buses, we are not sure if they serve areas that we have not gone to or are to deliver workers out to the industrial areas.
Of course there are also the collectivos, white vans that serve the same routes as the buses (even faster) and also routes that are not busy enough to require a bus.
In any 15 minute period there are at least 2 buses coming down the street in front of Casa Bonita and 4 collectivos.

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