My new Swiss travel friend Ralph and I decided to rent bikes and tour some neighborhoods outside of the historical district of Campeche. The city has a population of around 240,000 people, and we wanted to see what the rest of it looked like. We biked over to the hills above the city around the poorer neighborhoods.
We ran into these old men sitting outside their homes chatting. Ralph speaks Spanish, so he asked the men if there was anything to see in the area. They pointed us to an old fort at the top of the hill where the city defended itself from English and Dutch pirates back in the 1600’s.
We were getting hungry, so we stopped at a little store for a snack. The store was in the home of a man next door, these are common sights in little neighborhoods like this one. They usually only sell junk food, like spicy peanuts, chips, cookies, and soda. You can find one every few blocks in the front of someone’s home.
I saw a big turkey roaming around the man’s backyard, so I asked if I could go take a look. Like all Mexicans I’ve encountered so far, he had no problems with letting me wander around his home. His wife was back there sweeping random trash up off the dirt floor. I snapped this photo of their turkey, along with the laundry hanging out to dry. It gives you an idea of what a typical house looks like.
The hills we were biking around were very steep, almost like San Francisco, California. Which is kind of funny, because the city is also called “San Francisco de Campeche”. I snapped a photo of this hill we were about to walk up, because it was too steep to ride our bikes up (it’s hard to make out how steep it really is in this photo).
Behind me, locals were starting a big soccer game on a dirt field. We watched them play for a bit then moved on up the steep hill to a giant 50 foot tall communist-type statue of a man named Juarez. From up here you could see the whole city below and the Gulf of Mexico.