/ #mexico #San Cristobal de las Casas 

Scooter Ride to Las Grutas


Hey!  Let’s take the scooters out and see the caves, Las Grutas!

So Shelley, the owner of Croozy Scooters, got us – consisting of Bryn, Mandy, Shelley’s son Justin, his sweetie Sam, and Shelley – all fitted out with scooters and helmets, and away we went through the streets of San Cristobal and out to the highway out of town.  Beautiful ride, once we left the city traffic, and we cruised on down the road, with Mandy in the lead since she knew where we were going.  At one point Mandy and Bryn looked back and decided to pull over and wait to see if the rest would catch up from whatever delayed them.  Soon, here they came.

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Shelley and Ozzie all snug like a hot dog! Shelley, Justin, and Sam catching up.

We went quite some way out of town and took the exit for Las Grutas and paid our 5 pesos each to get into the park.  The ride through the woods on a gravel road, alone, was worth the trip.  We parked and locked up our bikes and explored the little park.  They have some tall slides made of concrete with lots of kids sliding down on little butt-sized pieces of cardboard and then running back up to the top.  Many people opt for a horseback ride into the wooded areas.  Very inexpensive here.  Others hike.  There are many taco shops, quesadilla shops, other food shops all in a row under the big shelter, so we had lunch after the cave walk.

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We bought our tickets to see the cave for 10 pesos each (75 cents) and trooped inside.  I expected some cute little cave like a gang of Texas outlaws might hole up in, hiding from the sheriff.  This was actually a large cave with active water deposits being made and stalactites and stalagmites and pools, some lit up with electric lights.  It had a wide path with heavy bright railings.  Very nice.

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The caves go quite a way further, but it goes beneath a military base, so there is a blockage.  Probably good since they also have artillery practice all the time, entertaining us with many explosions.  Mexicans sure do love their explosions (referring to all the heavy firework aerial bombs we’re entertained with nightly and in the mornings at 6:00 and all hours in between)!

We emerged from the caves and had a nice quesadilla lunch and we were on our way.  The trip back was going so well, and we had almost made it back to town when disaster hit.  Sam was third in line, I was behind her, and Shelley was bringing up the rear.  Sam got a little far off onto the shoulder and hit some deep gravel, going all out on the scooter downhill, probably 40-45 mph, she fishtailed, got “the wobble”, and flashed out toward the far oncoming lane, but she spun around and crashed in our lane.  Thankfully all the vehicles behind us had just passed us up so no squishing happened.  She lost a lot of skin on both palms and had some road rash on her forearm, side, and some on her leg and foot.  Shelley and I were almost panicking, and she was the one holding it together as she had me pour water on the palms to get the dirt off.  Then Shelley tore up a towel and wrapped her up.  About this time Mandy and Justin decided something was wrong and came back.  We managed to get Sam back into town and return to pick up her scooter.  She’s one tough chick!  And she stood up and survived the torture the doctor put her through at the hospital!  Can you say alcohol poured on raw live meat!?!   But all is well, and she’s nearly healed now, and she has a great story to tell.

Moral of the story:  Don’t get into gravel and wear helmet AND GLOVES when riding motorcycles, scooter, and bicycles!  If she’d had a jacket on, most of the road rash could also have been avoided.  But we all just opted on the helmets that day.  Dress for the wreck and then don’t have one!

All’s well that ends well!  Cheers!   She’s one tough chick.

Here is the whole set of photos:

[slickr-flickr tag=“grutas”]



Court reporter turned internet bum