Dispatch from Chiapas Motorcycle Ride Day 13

“Freedom is something that dies unless it’s used.” —Hunter S. Thompson

We are in Palenque, Veracruz. I know that doesn’t offer up much information now but, read on. The weather gods have opened up on us and haven’t stopped all day. An exhilarating ride in the rain for some to a shitty destination or who knows what else awaits us? We don’t yet know; what we do know is that non of our wet and damp clothing from yesterday will ever get dry; as the hotel doesn’t own a dryer but, putting damp clothes back on NOW doesn’t feel as miserable as watching some of our guys resemble the slow moving walking dead. There’s a flu bug going around now and hopefully you won’t soon be catching it.

Yesterday the day started off with rain and ended that way too so; no one got to go visit the famous palenque ruins nearby.

Apparently it’s one of the largest and best-preserved structures around and noted for its hieroglyphic inscriptions. In 1952 a crypt was also discovered underneath the temple, in which were found jade-ornamented remains of what may have been a ruler-priest of the 7th century.

This morning Tyedye Keith and Scott both sunny side up disposition types looked at the sky, that was still holding back the rain then they looked at each other and then in a mind meld sort of way probably made a beeline to visit the Palenque ruins. Super Dave also looked on with envy and was also inspired to ride and confirm that the crypt does exist. Tonight we are in the city of Cordova, Veracruz.

The rest of us have already done our homework of nearly four hundred miles of open toll roads. We left promptly at 7 a.m. and didn’t even once look back. The dreaded Mexican topes are now just a bad dream in some of our motorcycle suspensions and Dale’s front rim.

The Mexican spirits said, “let there be rain and suddenly while we travel at a high rate of speed, the sky suddenly just opened up and didn’t stop. It was both the most scariest and dangerous parts of this trip so far. At one time up ahead it was near white out conditions on our road as Todd and I rode together; we soon figured out it was just two double trailer semi’s driving side by side rolling up ahead whipping up all that rain. We made quick work of passing them before finally catching up to Joey who had already passed through the truck gauntlet. Today Joey scared me. Just one little miscalculation in some other drivers behalf in all this rain and ?

We are now in the city of Cordoba, Veracruz in the Hotel Layfer, a chain similar to the Marriott with long stay rooms. The rooms are more house like than rooms. There’s complete kitchens, a living room and two well appointed bedrooms. A swimming pool nearby and even free self service laundry.

My laundry is now done and I am clean and dry. At lunch team Charlie decided to leave me as the last man standing. Todd and Joey are calling it quits and heading back home starting tomorrow. Joey is a little sick and sore and misses mama (Pam) and Todd needs a dryer office and reupholstered waterproof boots.

Our final destination as a group occurs tomorrow in Mexico. The party is nearly over for those that flew in and rented motorcycles. For those remaining there’s more to come.

Everyday new day gave me the sensation of time very well spent riding with friends. My friend Dale is probably sicker than most followed by Super Dave, Joey, possibly Mike and I just heard Yoda Roberto too. Our future scouting ride now looks to be in jeopardy.

As we travel tomorrow let’s just see what the Mexican spirits have in our path. This is far from our last ride together. Todd, Roberto and I are looking ahead at Alaska. Bob and Roberto are looking ahead at Baja. And Tyedye Keith and Scott may still be in palenque by the time you read this.

We have gone from near freezing weather to hot and muggy weather to now rain that is still in the forecast. And now I’ll just sign off for today with words from a song called “Get Along” by Kenny Chesny.

“Get along, on down the road
We’ve got a long, long way to go
Scared to live, scared to die
We ain’t perfect but we try

Get along while we can
Always give love the upper hand
Paint a wall, learn to dance
Call your mom, buy a boat
Drink a beer, sing a song
Make a friend, can’t we all get along”

His simple instructions of — “Paint a wall, learn to dance/ Call your mom, buy a boat/ Drink a beer, sing a song” — reflects that we have a long, long life to live ahead of us, our ride should be remembered by all of the good deeds that we have done for each other, and for ourselves. Karma begets karma.

  • good-will (or kindness)
  • compassion
  • generosity

Someone paid for someone’s tolls; someone gave someone their spare inner tube to save their ride; someone booked our rooms and someone made the tracks that we followed and someone led so that others could follow; someone paid for someone’s meals and four persons had a birthday they won’t soon forget with like minded friends and sometimes we are just grateful to be riding our motorcycles with like minded riding friends. And there’s so many other things that I didn’t capture that bonded us together.

“In any case, good or bad, it reminds us that life is like a gladiators’ arena for the soul and so we can feel strengthened by those who endure, and feel awe and pity for those who do not.”


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