Saturday, December 18, 2010


On December 9th we were travelling from Querétaro to Lazaro Cardenas and got caught in the middle of what felt like a war zone. It just so happens that on that day there was a big shootout between the army and a dangerous drug cartel called ¨La Familia Michoacana¨ and in an attempt to keep the soldiers at bay they set up road blocks by confiscating and burning buses, trucks and cars on all the highways leading to where they were.

We first found out what was going on as we were leaving the city of Morelia and got caught up in traffic. It didn´t take long to find out what was going on since there were live reports being broadcasted on the radio. We sat in that traffic for about one hour and forty minutes and then finally started moving. The roads ahead had been cleared enough to pass through but as we rode on we saw the evidence of what had happened.

All throughout the day we saw lots of federal police on the roads, lots of soldiers and everyone was on edge about what might lie ahead on the highway. At one point as we were approacing a big curve, all the cars coming in the opposite direction were motioning to us to turn around and go back because the roads were blocked and you couldn´t get through. We turned around and waited again for the roads to be cleared enough to get through.

Several got out of their vehicles to talk while they waited and we heard one woman tell about how she just happened to be there when the people´s car in front of them had been confiscated...evidently the driver put up a fight about giving up his vehicle and she saw the young man get shot and killed. She was all shaken up as it was a very frightening experience. We sat there and waited awhile until we heard that the road was passable again and then we went cautiously ahead.

All together we counted about 10 burned vehicles on the route we were travelling that day and we were very thankful to make it home safely that night after a 5 hour trip turned into a 9 hour harrowing ordeal.

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