Random mural painted on a building in Oaxaca…
I enjoyed the culture filled town of Oaxaca for 2 days. I did the usual, walk around, see the sights, take pictures of the churches but I also had a chance to do some volunteering at an organization in town that is a sort of community center for underprivileged children. I hoped to spend the day with the kids, but they had a greater need for some administrative help – not as glamorous but just as appreciated and I still had a chance to play with the kids for a little bit.
One afternoon I walked around town and saw big orange KTM 990 parked inside a hotel. I stopped in and met Vince who is riding around the world over the course of a few years. We had a great time “talking moto.”
That night in the hostel I learned that the lockers had been broken into and money, a camera, and a laptop were stolen. Fortunately, I lock up all my valuables in my Micatech luggage but it was a reminder that you can’t let my guard down, even when you think you’re safe. Later we found out from the Police that this was the 8th theft this year from that hostel – looks like an inside job. For those of you traveling to the area, think twice before staying at the Mezkalito Hostel.
Before I left town I had to have some of the local delicacies, home made hot chocolate and Chaupolines – smoked grasshoppers in chili powder and lime. This one’s for you, Lisa!
I left Oaxaca early in the morning for a long days ride through the mountains down towards the ocean town of Puerto Escondido. The road quality was the worst it’s been so far. Lots of pot holes, gravel and sinkholes. Cruising around one corner I found part of the road missing! After getting lost and backtracking, I eventually made it to Puerto Escondido where the temps and humidity were much higher than in the mountains.
Walking around town one afternoon another big KTM 990 was rolling around. I waved my arms to signal the rider to stop and I shouted across the median that I was on a bike too. I met Justin who is riding from Colorado to TDF. He almost didn’t stop because he thought I was a local Mexican trying to sell him something. Am I that tan?!? I grabbed a taxi and he followed back to the hostel. It had been a rough day for him. Leaving Acapulco, he ever so lightly nudged a taxi’s bumper. The taxi ran him off the road and a cop soon met up with him and he paid a $150 USD fine/bribe! Understandably he was pissed off but he realized that it was lesson learned and a great story for his journey. Justin left the next day for Oaxaca and we plan to meet up again for some more riding together.
Amber came into town for a long Thanksgiving vacation and we had a great time relaxing on the beach, body surfing, boogie boarding, eating, and enjoying the sunsets from our ocean front bungalow.
Looking over the Playa Principal and Marina.
Sitting in the hand sculpture and napping in the hammock.
I always thought it was odd when people drank Corona in the middle of winter in New England. This is how a Corona is meant to be enjoyed – on the beach at sunset in Mexico.
Gymnastics on the beach.
We hired a boat to go out into the ocean to see tortugas. After 30 minutes of cruising our “captain” killed the engine, grabbed a rope, and jumped into the sea. OK… Seconds later he grabbed hold of a giant sea turtle and we pulled him back to the boat. He then yanked the gentle creature onto the boat and told us to come pet it. Never in the USA… The turtle must be thinking, “Shit! This is the third time today!”
Diving off the boat into the middle of the shark infested ocean.
Next thing I know I’m being chased by some Mexican guy!
The captain tells me to grab hold of the tortuga (I think… He spoke very little English and I had no idea what he was saying in Spanish). Nervously, I grabbed onto its shell and prepared for a ride around… Moments later it dove straight down with amazing power and I couldn’t hold on. Again, never in the USA…
Drinking and then eating coconuts on the beach.
Lounging in the ensuite “hot tub” which didn’t have hot water or working jets. It filled up about 2 inches deep in 30 minutes. I ended up doing laundry in it instead. I felt like a little kid playing with toys in the bathtub.
Amber devouring the most delicious yogurt known to mankind. I might have to start an import business to bring this to the States.
A truly artistic photo of two overweight Europeans in budgie smugglers enjoying the sunset. Their 3rd friend (who was much larger) didn’t want to leave his hammock chair. This one’s for you David…
I left Puerto Escondido with a cold and stopped into a quaint little town of Tehuantepec. There was a wonderful market that overflowed into the streets, some delicious street food, and a Christmas musical/play being performed in the square by the elementary students. The town was full of a type of tuk-tuk taxi that I’ve never seen before. I can only imagine that some local guy started pumping these out.
The next day I crossed into the state of Chiapas and headed up the mountains for San Cristobal de Las Casas.
My health was improving and the winding roads up the mountain gave beautiful views and delightfully cooler weather. These signs are everywhere in the mountains. They translate into English as “Dangerous Curve” or into Moto as “Fun Roads.”
I’ll be enjoying the culture and weather here in San Cristobal for a few days as I get some logistics squared away.