8/02/05 Mexican Motorcycle Diary pt.12
(continued from part 8/02/05 Mexican Motorcycle Diary pt.11)
After pleading with the woman at a nearby lavanderiato please take just one more load of clothes for the day. I told her I'd already been to three other shops and they told me it was too late. She thought for a moment and then agreed to take my clothes. I thanked her profusely because I really wanted to start the Baja with sweat stench-free clothing. She weighed my load and scrawled out a quick receipt for me. When I looked down at the price I thought there might be a mistake and said, "Why is the price double for under 3 kilos?" She quipped, "Rush charge." and smirked as she whisked away my clothes before I could change my mind. ;-)
The days here in Vallarta have melted one into the other in a humid haze. The nights have been so hot that I just stand under the cold shower 2 or 3 times a night, actuallly nude ;-), and just lay in the bed under the ceiling fan until I can get to sleep. Normally I would be self conscious enough to at least close the curtains while laying nude, but it has been so hot that I didn't give a donkey's bum if anyone saw me or not. I was only planning on staying here for 3 nights and thought that would be too long. But now I'm getting ready to settle in for my 5th night. It's a strange place Vallarta. You can love it or hate it, but it's certainly like no other place on Earth. Yes, it's touristy, and hot, etc. but there's something romantic and sultry about the place. Something hidden in the sweating palm leaves. And, it always feels like you're home after just a few days. It can get a little confusing if you forget you don't actually live here and have to keep moving on. Besides, I think poor Ruby is beginning to feel neglected so I gave her frame an nice bolt and screw tightening and dropped all my sweat-soaked clothes off to the lavanderia for one last cleaning before I hit the Baja. I hope to drag myself out of bed before dawn and see if I can make Mazatlan in time for the afternoon ferry to La Paz. I thought about just going up to Guyama to catch the ferry over to Rosalitas instead about midway up the Baja since many have told me the North and East of the Baja are the most scenic. Just as many have said that same about the South, so I think I'll just try and see the whole peninsula tip to tip and decide for myself. I visited with an old friend I've made here in Valllarta named Ernie Munoz who told me the Baja is pure magic. Says in the North on the Sea of Cortez at night you can hear these strange sounds from the heavens... almost as if you can actually hear the planets themselves. He's got a beautiful gallery and I absolutely love his work. We chatted for a bit this morning catching up and I discovered his brother who'd always taken care of all the business stuff had died last November. He was still pretty saddened by the loss and seemed lost to manage the gallery, etc. on his own. I shared stories of my own recent loss of my father and tried to console him. He seemed aimless now and wanted to just sell everything and move away to maybe Toledo, Spain.. Guanajuato... or maybe Vancouver, Canada.
After a long and heart-felt conversation, I bid my old friend good-bye and told him that I hoped to see him again one day whether it was in Spain, or Canada, or right here in Mexico. He seemed touched and yelled out "Thank You!" to me as I walked down the sidewalk. I turned and asked, "Thank you? Whatever for?", he seemed to tear up a bit and said, "For taking the time to talk with an old man." I looked at him square in the eyes and said, "The pleasure was all MINE mi amigo!"
I don't know how much access I'll find in the Baja, but I will update again when possible.
(to be continued in part 8/09/05 Mexican Motorcycle Diary)