Mexico City’s Killing Me

This entry is part 9 of 34 in the series Latin America Series

This post was inspired by the video below. It’s a song called “New York City’s Killing Me” by the great Ray LaMontagne. You don’t have to watch it, just turn it on and then continue reading. Got it? Ok…

I wasn’t even planning on spending a moment in Mexico City, but here I am, almost 10 days. I am staying with a bunch of amazing people that have helped me out in more ways than I can remember. So what’s bothering me? It not the motorcycle accident or the food poisoning that left me with a high fever that I am still recovering from. It’s the noise, the incessant noise all around. The same fruit vendor in a red pickup truck and a bull horn has been waking me up every morning, saying something along the lines of, “ZA PADA KE QUANTA Y BADA QUINCE DE FRADA!” and then repeats over and over as he sit in front of my window. That’s at least how my gringo ear hears it.

Then the fireworks late at night to honor some saint. The Saint Bernard who constantly barks. The inordinate levels of bass in passing cars. Ear plugs help, but not much. My physical health was in jeopardy with the crash, and that bad torta, but my mental health has slowly been deteriorating.

So my feet have been very itchy to move on, but I am waiting for this torta incident to pass (quite literally). I really need to get out in the country. Slow things down. Not have to lane split 10 miles to go shoot pool. I wanna pitch my tent, watch the sunset then ride off in the morning. Silence, how I miss you. I’ll be back to you soon.

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  • daniel o’b-b

    buddy boy, i feel you on this. my heart really goes out to you. i love that you’ve wanted to make this trip for years, and now that you’re doing it, you’re experiencing all of these unforeseen things. maybe not completely unforeseen, but unforeseen enough. i think about you a lot. A LOT. it works itself into conversations with people on various subjects about traveling, motorcycles, badasses, and even computer related things. i admire you for your genuine tenacity, and can’t wait for another month down the line when you’re not in mexico city, and you’re out where you really want to be. that’s where i picture you, and i have a feeling that’s more where you picture yourself, as well.

  • Ramiiam

    Ride on, friend. I admire your resourcefulness. You’re experiencing the challenge you came for: Lost a girlfriend, crashed your bike, ingested hostile microbes, experienced the mind-rape that is Mexico City. The culture shock and the sense of being an exile will get worse, and there will be moments when you think about quitting. But just keep pushing on, and you’ll overcome it. That is what I learned when I spent a year traveling solo in Africa at your age.

  • Yamamotoyama

    Seriously, dude have you considered that you might be a bad rider and not know what you’re doing?

    I’ve watched some of your earlier ones and i predicted this. Go home.

    Unless it’s a big joke on us. I can see that with the confusion on the rice aisle and the nonsense with lighting your stove on fire.

    Either way, give it up, it’s kind of sad.

  • Brian Setzer

    We met briefly at the hostel in Oaxaca before I had to head off (the guy with the V-Strom back home). Wanted to let you know about a couple of New Zealander’s in San Cristobal. They will be there for a couple of weeks. I met them in Yellowstone and they have a KLR and a 250 Kawasaki. Their website is and their phone number is on the front page if you are looking for someone in that area when you pass by. Enjoy the trip1

  • shoobypootershoot

    First of all, don’t ever listen to ignoramuses like Yamamammawhatever. Always haters no matter who you are, where you are, how successful you may or may not be, or what you do. Their opinion is irrelevant.

    Now, like the other comments on here, you have my sympathies. In my life, there have been a couple of times I have gotten the urge and have set off on some big trips. Truth told, we never understand the magnitude of our ambitions until we are at the point of total physical and emotional stress, compounded by being isolated and ‘lonely’ in a far away land, without the particular comfort you think you need so badly.

    When I was on one of my multi-year backpacking trips, I found myself in Varanasi, India, with a horrible case of food poisoning. My sleeping quarters were in the open air on the rooftop of a guesthouse, just above one of the “burning ghats”. The burning ghats are where bodies are cremated and released into the Ganges river, 24 hours a day, everyday. I hadn’t realized this when I took the space. Anyway, lets say there is nothing like smelling burning flesh and plastic constantly, while you are quite literally vomiting and shitting simultaneously, perpetually, and for days. So, it is imperative you remember you are not alone, we understand your struggle, and you will absolutely get over it. Just do not give up, whatever you do. Grow from these adversities. Challenges are so much more bearable when you are able to see yourself becoming a better person from them. Release yourself into the river. You are fighting the current and holding on to what you must release yourself from. This is the purpose of your trip. Detach yourself so that you may find yourself. Not to sound new-agey, but that is absolutely true. Travel is supposed to suck sometimes. It is supposed to be hard and emotional. That’s how you know you are doing it right. Let go. Look forward. You are your own best friend. Get into your thing. The road is calling. Peace.

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