Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Celebrating the Holidays in San Ignacio

San Ignacio

A palm oasis
Quiet dammed river waters, darting coots,
Gliding over the cement causeway to the mellow plaza, ancient mission
A seemingly slower lifestyle, historical from the pictures of old times similar to present times.

Product packed mini stores, boys select gifts, "cinquenta pesos or less"
Now wrap them up, hide them - just a day more to go.

Down time.
Muscles gently unwind.
Appetites still ravenous, no worries. A break of a week - indulgence never felt better.

We rode hard and receive the reward.
Dust from the desert, spines and cactus green await our return to the road.

Christmas in San Ignacio was a special time. While unwinding, we experienced the joys of the Baja Sur, an outdoor kitchen, hikes in the desert, watching buzzards soar, and the warmth and hospitality of George and Jery at the "El Faro", Christmas dinner hosted by Juanita the local historian and the fun of sharing burria with tortillas and lobster salad and soccer in the street with a local family the morning after Christmas.

We're rested and ready to move down the road - out to the coast of the Sea of Cortez. Colonial towns and adventures await. It's good that the Baja is a long peninsula, and that we've finally reached a pace of travel we've been seeking - take it as it goes, living without a time frame.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Baja California Only Gets Better

A most tasty lunch...desert style. No dishes to wash, no extra water needed.
Slice an avocado in half - toss the pit. Mince up the avocado with a knife. Add salt, chopped jalapeno and your favorite hot sauce. Right now we're carrying "Guacamaya". Mash up. Spread on a sliced bilote (bakery bun/bread), add slices of cheese, tomato and some canned tuna. Que rico!

Excerpts from journals:
"Dogs in the Morning" Today we woke up and a dog was on the side of my tent on my side. Then I got dressed and got out of the tent and I picked him up and made him warm. Then Dad made bread and cheese and jam for breakfast. After breakfast I found seven more pups and a mom. I sat down in a chair and the mom jumped up on me. That was a fun winery.

"Hot Springs in the Afternoon": Today we got off on a dirt road that said, "Three Km Hot Springs". So we went down that road and we turned left and then right. Finally we got to a little building with lots of washing machines and people washing their shoes all with warm water. Then we waited until a family hot tub was open. When it was open we went in and filled it up and then we got in. It felt really good.

"Today": Today we woke up in the desert in Baja and there were lots and lots of cactus. Then Dad started cooking up some egg sandwiches, I had two, they were good. After breakfast we took down the tents and walked back up the dirt road and we rode 18 km and then we had a snack. An hour later we had ham and cheese sandwiches. Then we rode on a little more and we got to a place where there were lots of trees and we camped there.

Today we had pancakes and oatmeal for breakfast. It was good because we had syrup on it. After breakfast I did my math work. After I did my math work I did two excellent spelling sentences with a picture. It was fun doing my school work.
Yesterday it was raining and we saw a tall upside-down carrot tree and it looked like a big pitchfork. Today it was sunny and we went up and down and there was not much traffic. We camped behind an old school. Tomorrow it will be a sunny day and there will be more hills and it will be fun. We will get to Catavina.

Dec. 15 Today we woke up and we had rice with jelly, raisins and mango in it. It was good. After breakfast Dad and Mom packed the bags and we left and it was so windy that Mom put a bandana over her ears and I put my hoody under my helmet. When a truck passed us it blew us. we had eggs and jelly on bread and hot cheese sandwiches for breakfast. After breakfast Dad noticed he had a flat tire. Then Dad fixed it. After Dad fixed it we got on the bike and we left camp and we found the dirt trail that lead to the main road and we had a side wind.

Tarn writes:
Today I was hapy.

It is going to be nine more days until Kristmas.

Today I fownd a rock.

December 17 There are eight more days until Kristmas.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Rolling Across the Border, Mexico At Last

Markos' journal, Dec. 3
Today we started our day going to the post office and sending two notes. Then we went flat for a while and then went down hill and it was very windy. And then we turned left and went uphill and we saw Tecate from the top and we went down into Tecate.

Sampson's journal, Dec. 3
Today we woke up in Potrero with Mo and Tom. Then we had oatmeal with syrup. It was really good. Later we played ball while dad and mom packed up. When we were ready to go Mo and Tom said, "Goodbye!" and we rode up and down to Tecate. Before we went to Tecate we had to get a visa for 180 days. In Tecate we went to the bakery and got some fresh goodies. Then we went to a taco shop and I got a taco. Later we rode out of town. We found a big water park that was closed and we waited until a truck came up and said we could camp there. We had a good night.

Tarn writes, Dec. 4
We are camping at a winery and there is a zip-line next to us and it has a swing on it.

Waiting/watching the bikes at the border, Tanya writes:
"I Think I Know Why I Like Mexico"

It's being yet disappearing within a realm of hustle and noise
It's bits and pieces of words - a pleasant mixture of sound and meaning
Dry, dusty brown - healthy green, vibrant red, growing in a pot or can.

Roadworks, gravel, chunks of broken cement
Uneven sidewalks, wandering dogs, chained gnashing teeth scoundrels

Chipped paint, graffiti block-letter signed walls
Bent rebar, miscellaneous barbed wire.

Warm sunlight through haze
Uniformed vests, short sleeves on muscled chests
Identification name cards hanging on neck bands, slicked, styled hair.

Walking people - bags/purses.

Brown skin, black hair, hues of magenta, orange, red
Faces of nationalities - light to dark, striking to over-looked.

Refuse, piles of mixed debris
Plant matter, crushed plastic bottles, and muddy wrinkled up plastic bags

A greeting, time taken to spend the time, seemingly siempre agradable
Laughter, smiles or a smoke to share.