Everything is allowed to drive here

Would you like to taste a piece of Mexican culture? Hop onto a local bus! This will say it all. The buses have fixed routes but are privately owned. This means that the owner may do with his bus whatever he likes. Lights, bells, favourite music pumping out the speakers. Some buses are in good shape whilst others are missing its bumper or a headlight. I like all of them because: they are allowed! At these places, it becomes clear that everything that I have been through during my life in the Netherlands is so different from what I am experiencing here.

Of course you might say: that’s really dangerous, right? Yes it is, but that’s also the beauty of it. In Utrecht (a city in the Netherlands) the doors of the bus won’t close because people are standing too close to the exit, in Mexico some buses don’t even have doors so people can hop on and hop off easily when the bus slows down.

When driving in Mexico you can encounter all kinds of cars. The newest ones, that the average Dutch person can’t even afford, but also cars which wouldn’t be approved to drive on Dutch roads. There are also cyclists, but they are a minority. Gigantic trucks and of course the famous Volkswagen Beetle, by Mexicans called a vocho, are part of the scene. These vochos are not only used as private transportation, but also as taxis (in Mexico City or Taxco, for instance).

El Vocho Mexicano
El Vocho Mexicano

Nearly all of Mexico’s traffic is dangerous and makes driving a real challenge. Every time I have to drive, I take a deep breath and pray to God that I will arrive alive. I hope this phase will pass by quickly. I still feel more comfortable at the passenger seat, from where I can easily analyse traffic. Driving in Mexico means to speed up your responsiveness: every moment, something unexpected might happen and this can end badly.

Use your sentido común – your common sense and make sure that you’re very alert at any time, and you should be fine driving in Mexico. If you’re in the luxury position of taking place in the passenger seat, look around and enjoy Mexico’s beautiful scenery and its modes of transportation that fill the roads.

What is the most special (or spectacular) vehicle that you have ever seen in Mexico?

© 2015 by Debbie Vorachen – Ahorita YA. All rights reserved.
Photos © 2015 by Debbie Vorachen – Ahorita YA. All rights reserved.

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