28th Nov 2003.

Welcome to Mexico! Palenque is home of another set of Mayan ruins, that would help break up a very long bus journey. We stayed a few kilometres down the road in a busy bustling town that had no real attraction (particularly in the rain.)

We got up early and managed to make our way around the ruins before the rain set in for the day. Palenque was a Mayan city from before 100 BC beofre being abandoned like the rest of Mayan civilisation sometime in the 10 century AD.

Inside some of the ruins, you can see how they were constructed.  This was of particular interest to Jason who likes that kind of thing..... Claire "I am a box of birds and full of energy (not) on my stupid diet" doesn't seem to like that sort of thing.

If you look closely you can see the man who mows the lawn. There are some seriously big stretches of grass here and we couldn't believe how slowly he was cutting the grass with his little flymo..... it must take him a month to loop around the park and start again.

Palenque has a fantastic museum, where we were finally able to piece together the Mayan culture.  

When you are looking at piles of ruins and stones, it is difficult to imagine that they were painted bright red and adorned with artifacts such as this.

....or walls covered in these brilliant icons that constitute the Mayan alphabet.

To help break up the afternoon before our nightbus we were going to visit some waterfalls . Instead it bucketed it down that we had to stay in a cafe, where we saw this stupid van.

Palenque's shops and houses drainage systems, were just pipes coming down off the roof making it easy to get us and our rucksacks totally drenched.

The first hour on the air-conditioned bus was very chilly.

The food has changed considerably since we came over the border.... and we like it a lot! Jason has been regularly seen over indulging in jalpenos and the like before sweating through his ears and ordering a glass of milk.

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