I ended up getting to the mountain about 8 am. The cab driver there totally ripped me off, but there wasn't much I could do about it, as we had agreed upon the price before he took me. Unfortunately, however, having no idea how far or near it actually was, I had no way to tell if he was overcharging me. I suspected he was, once I got there, but paid him our agreed upon price. On the way back home I didn't get a price beforehand and just let the meter run, to test my theory, and the ride back was less than half the price of the ride there. So I was right. I'm learning a thing or two here about how things work.
But the mountain was amazing. I lucked out by having an incredibly hazy, breezy, overcast morning, which didn't do much for the views of the city, but did a lot for not having a scorching Mexican sun beating down on me the whole time.
I got about halfway up in just over an hour, actually, and stopped to rest on a huge concrete structure left over from when they tried to build a lift up the side of the mountain about 20 years ago. Apparently it was engineered very poorly, didn't work so well, and a few people even died on it somehow, so it was abandoned. That's where most people stop, and there were even a couple of vendors up there selling food. How in God's name they get their shit up there, I have no clue. There's really no way up except to climb, so I'm guessing it must be incredibly lucrative for them to go through that. So I rested for about 30 minutes, ate some fruit, drank a bunch of water, and took some pictures of some pollution. I considered going back at that point, but I really wanted to push myself. My legs were burning and felt like jelly, and now, about 2 hours after the fact, the muscles in my butt are fucking killing me, as are my thighs. And my legs still feel like rubber bands.
But I pressed on. I passed a huge, tin crucifix that had been constructed by somebody or other, and it was absolutely one of the most garish things I've ever seen. I should have snapped a picture of it, but I didn't. I kept climbing, and the terrain deceptively starts to even out a bit. I stopped by the side to pee in the trees. And then I turned a corner, and behold, I hadn't seen anything yet. There's a huge radio tower on the top of the mountain that's pretty much the pinnacle, and that's where I wanted to go, but after I turned that corner, the path suddenly inclined about another 10 or 15 degrees, and I threw in the towel. The mountain kicked my ass. I theoretically could have kept going, for a brief bit, but the thought of having to walk all the way back down is what eventually stopped me. Had there been a helicopter waiting to whisk me back to my dorm room at the top, I totally would have kept on. But there wasn't, and it's good that I saved some energy, because the steep incline, and the slippery rocks, were hell on the descent. I actually busted my ass a couple of times, and turned my ankle slightly once, but no real damage was done, aside from a bruised ego.
Anyway, I arrived back safely, took a very long, very hot shower (I swear, I've never sweat so much in my entire life; I was absolutely drenched, and it wasn't even hot or sunny), made some breakfast (my second one of the day), and tried to rest a bit. When I told my professor where I got, he said that was farther than anybody's gotten in the last 3 years. So I was satisfied with that.
I have a feeling I'm going to sleep very well tonight.