Mexico is a wonderful country and I'm glad I finally got to experience it for myself. Before I left, I was asked about how I planned to stay safe and secure in this dangerous country of Mexico. First of all, Mexico is not a dangerous country. Of course there are bad parts like the border towns, but as I was told and proved to myself, once you pass the border zone, it's a very friendly and welcoming place. Never once did I feel my security threatened. Well, it probably helped that I am brown-skinned and everyone thought that I was Mexican.

The riding in the country was phenomenal. From the awesome dirt-track down to Batopilas in Copper Canyon to the ever winding Espinoza Diablo to the numerous other unexpected twisty havens, Mexico truly is a rider's country. But I have to say the topes (speed bumps) became a little unbearable towards the end of the trip. I guess in trade-off, since the speed limits aren't really enforced allowing for more hooligan-style riding, the topes have to be lived with. Besides my gaffe along the Pacific coast, low-siding into a ditch, traffic was very well-behaved. I felt my riding may have been more of a threat to the locals than them to me.

The scenery all across the country was truly marvelous. From staring across the deep Copper Canyon, to the mystical fog-filled Espinoza Diablo, to the picture-perfect sunsets, I was amazed at the diversity of surroundings that are to be experienced in Mexico. The interesting views that are to be seen also include the gorgeous colonial cities of Guanajuato and San Miguel de Allende. And pyramids. Seeing pyramids for the first time is definitely a moment to treasure and I'm thrilled I got to experience the Pyramid of the Sun all to myself.

My mouth still keeps watering whenever I look at my pictures of the food I had. Nothing was too elaborate or expensive, but it hit just the right spot for me. From Barbacoa burritos on the road side, to grilled fish by the ocean, to the heavenly meat stew of Birria, to the carnita tacos at the local food court, my taste buds have truly been spoilt. Ever since coming back, the blandness of the food here in the States in general has been heightened. But maybe that's because all my taste buds have been burnt off already. I've found the recipe for Birria and it looks complicated, but I'm going to give it a shot to satiate my yearning taste buds.

Everyone I met on my journey was warm and hospitable. I already knew that going into it since I generally have greater faith in humanity, but to see acts of kindness and openness was very welcoming. From chatting up with other tourists on their own journeys, to helping an ex-drug dealer practice English, to hearing people's love of Mexico such as an ex-Physicist and accountant, I got an insight into other people's journey through life and what makes Mexico so special.

Regarding my ride, the only thing I would do differently would be to mount more street-oriented tires than the 50 street/50 dirt tires that I started on. I'm sure the Kenda K270's would have made the whole journey of 6,400 miles if I didn't ruin them on the first day, but even for the ride down to Batopilas, I think 90 street/10 dirt tires would've been fine. Besides that, before the trip, I was worried about not having hard luggage. I didn't have the time to mount up a new rack and hard cases and just went with my sport-touring saddle bags and they did fine, besides the damage during the low-side. I was wondering how hard cases would have faired during a low-side like that and I'm thinking they would be the better option. But if an aluminum mount for a case broke, it would be very hard to get it fixed and continue the trip. My mini air compressor proved handy during the off-road riding, but the Pemex's had free air at most stations.

Regarding cost of the trip, I exchanged $900 in Chihuahua and used it up over the next 14 days in Mexico. That's including lodging, gas, food, cuotas and bribe money. On average that comes out to about $64 per day, which is not bad. I tried to stay in the cheapest lodging possible, but also took into account location and recommendations. I could've gone cheaper for lodging in some locations, but gave priority to proximity to the town square as I didn't want to stay far away and then take a taxi into town, which would negate the cost savings. Food was very low budget for most meals, but I did splurge up to $15 or even $20 for some meals, sacre bleu! I was thrilled that the majority of my meals were under $5, especially for how tasty they all were.

The main purpose of this trip, if there needs to be one, was to introduce me to motorcycle travel in a different culture. I wanted to see how well my broken Spanish would do and I'm happy to say I actually managed pretty well. I listened to my Spanish language CDs from Michel Thomas twice before entering Mexico and then had my Lonely Planet Spanish phrase book with me everywhere I went. The language barrier was definitely not an issue.

I would like my next trip to be a ride through South America, but for that I would need much more time-off, which might be tricky right now with work and a career. One of the surprises from this Mexico trip that has convinced me that a South America trip would be totally feasible is everyone thinking that I was one of the locals, just for being brown-skinned. If I learnt fluent Spanish and some Portuguese before heading south, I'm sure I could pass off as a local in most locations, which should greatly increase my security situation, or at least help family and friends think that my security situation is not a concern. Plus, not having a number plate for most of the trip didn't disclose my origin to everyone. Next time I head south, I think I'll just remove my plate after I cross the border...

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