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The Glorieta From Hell

Larry Landwehr

This morning Mary and I were driving around doing errands. As we negotiated our way through the "Glorieta From Hell" it suddenly occurred to me that a picture of the GFH would be worth a thousand words, so after completing our chores, I walked around the GFH diagramming it (see below).

The Glorietta from Hell Keep in mind that this is a simplified bird's eye view and things are much more confusing at street level.

The one-way streets are all multi-lane and Mexicans pay no attention to lanes whatsoever. Once the light turns green, anything and everything is legal as the packed crowd tries to navigate individual paths through the mob. Cutting other cars off is a matter-of-course activity. Making left hand turns from a right hand lane (and vice versa) is done with gusto and panache.

Once you know the GFH, it is surprisingly easy to get through it if you stay calm. But heaven help any out-of-towner and those around him. Things snarl up in a microsecond.

You don't drive through the glorieta - you feel your way.

Our route through the GFH demonstrates how complex the GFH is. We approach the GFH on Mariana Otero (lower left corner). Once the light changes we get on the circular part (all glorietas seem to travel counter-clockwise). Then we make a left hand turn onto Lopez Mateos. At the second exit we get onto Mariana Otero again. Once we get outside the circle, Mariana Otero splits in two - into a primary road and a lateral, or local access road. Dodging the potholes at that point (which the city seems unable to fix) by weaving from one lane to another, we shift onto the lateral and finally reach Lloyds.

Oh, one final note. There are, of course no street signs. What? You think the city is going to make it easy for you?

Published or Updated on: January 1, 2001 by Larry Landwehr © 2008
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