Another day in Paradise! (song by Phil Collins)
Sir, can you help me?
It’s cold and I’ve nowhere to sleep
Is there somewhere you can tell me?”
He walks on, doesn’t look back
He pretends he can’t hear her
Starts to whistle as he crosses the street
Seems embarrassed to be there
Oh, think twice, ’cause it’s another day for you and me in paradise
Oh, think twice, ’cause it’s another day for you
and me in paradise
The big bad Baja pickup truck coming at me at a high rate of speed in the opposite direction quickly flashes it’s lights at me. I could see hands and lots of hair waving wildly. In Baja that could easily mean one of a few things like that there’s a federali police somewhere up ahead; 2) that we’re glad you are in Baja or 3) that a cousin or friend also rides motorcycles. Never trust a turn signal across the border, unless it’s coming from a well trained trucker and in Baja that could be an oximoron. Think jumbo shrimp. The word ‘jumbo’ means huge or gigantic, while the word ‘shrimp’ means small. Now think well trained Baja truck driver and you also have the makings of an oxymoron; similar to when you combine the two words like jumbo shrimp. Jumbo means huge and shrimp means small.
Our journey down Baja riding motorcycles is a journey of discovery for some, for others like me, the surrounding Mexico backdrop, plays itself out similar to the scenery in a play. Totally fitting words as we (today) blast our way southbound on Mexico 1 towards Loreto.
Mexicans from all over the non Spaniards established town and cities flock to Loreto year round to see their lovely sidewalks. They are all uniform in size, shape and even width; the same as we have back home only we gringos, like with other common things like running water and garbage collection just take it all for granted.
In some towns like our last one Santa Rosalia, the streets sink, the sidewalks are at times huge with near intentional drop offs, oftentimes they more resemble a livestock loading ramp than a people passway.
There’s not allot to do in San Ignacio, which is where we are now but, if you visited, you could spend a little time walking around the Zocalo buying souvenirs or visiting the mission or the museum or go out to the cave paintings or; whale watching!
Every Mexican town has a Zocalo. The large courtyard in San Ignacio has around a dozen stately looking 100′ tall trees planted and nourished by the Jesuits. The mission was built in 1723, so I’m probably not far off saying these trees are close to two hundred years old.
The Kukamana indigenous peoples run a tourist store where for $100 a person you could buy a voucher for a spot on a panga to go out and have a 45′ grey whale come out and greet you in the nearby lagoon. There’s no grey whales out now to see but the season is December to April. The restaurant in town treated us well and the food was fabulous and so was the service. We stayed at the Hotel La Huerta and we ate at the Rancho Grande grill. Freshly caught giant scallops was a meal for two of us; Todd enjoyed the bbq baby backs, another went for that jumbo shrimp.
After your meal walk next door to the Edson ice cream shop for homemade ice cream or enjoy an authentic date shake or a banana split like she made for us.
Look at all the Baja racing stickers, maps and maybe support the local racers and but a t shirt. At nearly five thirty this morning I walked around the entire town. I saw decrepit old former historic buildings with dates like 1927 and 1929. The homeless sleeping dogs are on the streets. I am also thinking about the ride home.
Would we feel as comfortable walking around any US small tourist town on a first visit? Possibly not. My laundry is ready for fumigating.
We are our own man in Baja. In two days we cross back to the land of the free and the brave and all the restrictions and regulations that we can choose to take or ignore now. Most people vacation in the same places year after year, as they love the sense of security that comes with that decision.
Others, like this little group of riders that Gpskevin assembled together come here just to get out of our comfort zone. Every day we face extremely taxing new decisions like for example where is Gregg with our room keys or the best places to eat. The ride is a given but not how fast you push it.
Every day a new peril exists on and off the road. Perhaps a cow might take one of us out. What an extremely terrible way to meet the local fauna.
On a previous Baja ride I remember writing the following: Yesterday Roberto nearly met head on a trophy sized ram running at a 45 degree angle on a sloping hillside; so far away that he thought it was trying to get away.
Somehow physics and a sense of humor caused a trajectory of Baja proportions, similar to the people, whereby the two nearly intersected.
In our western culture not knowing what might happen later today should be avoided at all costs.
We must stay informed with the latest news. Everything should be neatly organized and structured. Not in our world these past five days.
Now if I could only get some reliable WiFi.
All of us are looking for something, I don’t know what it is but, I’ll know it when I find it.