Saturday, January 15, 2011

Leaving Ajijic, Heading Homeward

It is a bitter sweet time . . . time for us to depart Ajijic, Mexico and head back to our Oregon home. The two months we'd planned have lapsed and although Roland is ready to stay, I have some wonderful commitments to return and continue. So we've spent the last few days, re-organizing the cupboards (padding glass and then, placing dividers or in boxes other loose items) and taking down the patio canopy. And finally all our connecting lines, electric, water and waste.

We took our last evening walk along the long, tree-lined Careterra with the quiet arterial of nice homes. Some we'd watched progress of remodels or made friends of different small businesses along the route. One of our favorite is a little cafe with yummy "coffee ice cream" for Roland and they've even personalized my double "Chai tea" drink with cinammon-y foam.

Roland has especially become attached to our horses, the mom and baby, we early on befriended. Each night he'd bring them carrots and tonight as a special g'bye, he brought their favorite, an apple. When I caught up to him, the horse had already eaten the apple and Roland had tears rolling down his cheek. He told me how he'd told her it was their "last treat, that we were leaving" and after the apple, she'd given his nose a g'bye nuzzle, turned, and walk away. I love his gentle "animal heart"!

Early the next mornin' we are up and breakfasted. In order to drive out of our snug lil' RV pad, we have had to request neighbors in the street don't park adjacent to the gate and have our two casita friends to move their cars out at 6:45am. Our dear neighbor, Michael, followed us up to the place where we were to hitch the RV to the car and got this fun shot before we pulled out.

We were told about this short cut up an newly developed by-pass that would avoid the city of Jocotepec. It takes you up above the road leading around Lake Chapala and offered us this lovely view of the sunrise coming up over the water! We'd driven this route before . . . only to find the road is complete, until you get to the bridge where you'd drive over and then merge onto the highway below. The road just stops, bluntly, just where a bridge would start ~ no signs! Roland checked out the construction road off to the right, steep, rocky and bumpy ~ and thinks the RV will travel down it fine. Me? I'm walkin'!!! Cody and I waited at the bottom of the vertical incline. Watching was not as bad as the ride I'm sure . . . but he did make it!

Once on Mexico's Highway 15D (love "D", it's the toll road, but beautifully maintained for the most part and safe) the trip's a breeze. We meander back up thru Guadalajara (but the west end, less pollution and traffic) and over the big mountains north. I'd forgotten how lovely the checker board agriculture fields just outside of Tepic were, one field sugar cane, the other another different green. Then the fields start alternating with corn as we near Mazatlan, and we begin looking out for our evening's planned lodging.

After having such a harrowing experience in Mazatlan coming down, we'd wanted to have our "ducks more in a row" if that is possible in Mexico travel. So we'd emailed and gotten both a confirmation and a map from an RV park, "Tres Amigos", just south of the city of Mazatlan on the beach. We took the turn off just after Villa Union, heading toward the airport. After a couple other turns noted on the map, we make our last turn onto an eight and a half mile stretch (not noted on the map was the fact that it was . . . ) of wash-board dirt and rock road. It was a miserable road, but we stiffed it out gritting our teeth for 45 minutes. When we finally reach "Tres Amigos" someone stops us quick, telling us the car we are towing's front wheels aren't turning in the deep sand!! So we have to disconnect the car which gives Roland a chance to see that the special brake system on the towed vehicle has pulled thru the front bumper and our license plate. So now, when we find a mechanic to fix that, he can't arrive til Monday. Ok, at least we may stop vibrating from the road by that time!

We get hooked up, change to beach clothes and head to the salt water to rejuvenate! We locate a local eatery on the beach and settle in for a light meal. Calmed from the "thrill" of the drive, we saunter back from dinner and had timed it just right to catch is beautiful sunset.

We nest in to read for awhile before bed, pleased at the quiet and distant breaking of the waves. Suddenly, we hear "uno, dos, tres" over a loud sound system. The new flash is - - that there's a dancing/live music facility just 50 yards down from us - - and it is Saturday night! Oh well, we've mastered going to sleep with roosters, firecrackers and Om-pah bands nearby . . . what's a little dance music?

G'nite for now . . . our travels continue . . .

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