Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Please Watch for Animals and Street Kids, Next 10,000 miles
Sorry to those of you have been following us for not writing sooner. I guess we have just been so busy and full of excitement that our blog, or at least my portion, has not been as up to date. The last week or two has been full of adventure, some good some bad. The bad is always more interesting than the good. Since I last blogged we crossed the Sea of Cortez and rode up to Durango along what is quite possibly the scariest road I have every riden. The "Spine of the Devil" may need a better name simple because that does not express the sheer terror dad and I felt while we rode the 100 plus miles of curves intermingled with semi-trucks, cows, rabid dogs, and the occational person walking in the road. But we made it to the very unlikely destination point of El Salto, a mixture of dusty saw mill town and Deedwood, South Dakota. A day later we rode into Durango, sounds like a nice place, but really not much more than a big church in the middle of town. Although Durango was the point in the trip where we decided that we could no longer spend $40 a night on hotels, with the fear of going broke, and began staying in the cheapest places possible. The difference between a $25 hotel and a $30 hotel is very obvious to us now. We had a few day before we had to be in Guadalajara to meet with the Mexican Forestry Commision (Yesterday and Today) so we decided to go to Zacatacas and then down to Chapala. We kind of got ourselves freaked out about Guadalajara. I mean what is there to fear about riding a motorcycle through latin american town of 9 million people. Well everything was going fine until the first stoplight in Guadalajara. The street kids surrounded us and were asking where we were headed. Between the street kids, the guy in the truck next to me and my dad yelling out the name of the town we were headed to I totally freaked out took off weaving in between traffic to get to the front, the left turn light turned green and I went. Unfortunately dad was not directly behind me, he had been "bumped" by a truck and was apparently pinned between his bike and another truck. The same street kids that freaked me out help dad get back up right and he made it through the light. I was freaking out thinking god only knows what happenen to him. I kept calling on my radio "Dad, turn left" with no response. I was thankful to see him make the turn, but his windshield was broken and both of our nerves were completely shot for the day. We finally got through Guadalajara and on the Chapala where we stayed for three nights. Sunday we took a day trip to the Colima Volcano, a little to long for a day trip. For some reason we've been freaking ourselves out, getting stressed out about stuff that really doesn't matter or can be fixed with money. It never ceases to amaze me that when we feel we have a insurmountable problem the solution suddenly appears. All I can say is that the Universe Provides. So Monday we drove back into Guadalajara and found our cheapest hotel yet, a point I am very proud of. We are actually not in Guadalajara but the northern suburb or Zapopan. Point of intest though is that Zapopan is just as large as Guadalajara in size, but whereas our Lonely Planet book has 20 pages dedicated to Guadalajara it has one half a page dedicated to Zapopan. Yesterday and today we visited with the National Commission of Forestry, talking about and visiting two communities that are paid to conserve their forest for the protection of the watershed. This is hopefully our first of four visits to Payments for Environmental Services programs along the the route. The visit was a success, we both spoke way to much spanish in one day. Our brains are fried, but we difinetely saw some areas of Mexico that very few visitors will ever see. Just a note to those who do not know Mexico very well, like me before this trip. There are like 30 Mexicos inside Mexico, and everyone is distinct in culture, climate and land. I would say that the represntation of Mexico on the Simpsons is most like Nogales. Manana hopefully we get a new wind shield for dad and then on to Mexico City.