Even though Justin lost the entire print out for Baja California that we copied from Bicycling Mexico and woke me up the first night screaming (in Spanish and in English) at a person messing with our bikes while we were sleeping (it turned out to be the tarp blowing in the wind); he still has a lot of funny things to say.
630 miles down, we are pushing along pretty good. Climbing mountains under the blazing sun isn’t exactly the most fun thing ever, but everything else more than makes up for it. I am not all that excited about the Baja; I wish I had prepared more for it mentally. All I can think about is riding through Chiapas and Guatemala, but I guess we’ll be there soon enough. The most fun parts have been chillin out during lunch with the locals and our sketchy camping situations. It’s always an adventure looking for a flat place to camp off of the side of the road that is hidden out of sight. Then we get out our headlamps, set up camp and cook our gourmet meals.
No matter what we are doing it is better than sitting in some cubicle or in a stuffy classroom. How many more years can I get away with not working in the summer? Maybe I have to get my PHD so that I can be a college professor and do this every summer….
We ended day 6 with style, we camped right on the beach, not a person, house, or coca-cola sign in sight. It was beautiful; I have never slept on the beach before. Going for a walk along the beach first thing in the morning made me appreciate it more than I ever have in the past. Now I know why some people are so gung-ho about it. That’s what I love about bicycle touring; we are happy if we find some where to sleep where no one will mess with us, but sometimes you find yourself on a completely uninhabited beach. Even if you could plan something like that it wouldn’t be as fun. I did crash on the dirt/sand road we took back there (my shoes didn’t unclip out of my SPD pedals when I started to slide out) but I got over that quickly.
For the next couple of days we crossed the ultra hot disierto central, we had to each carry a gallon of water and we couldn’t ride between about 11am and 5pm cause the sun was so hot. We would scramble in these small towns to find shaded where we would sit and read or write. The environment is astounding, from huge rock formations to dizzying switch backs down huge mountains (top speed– 46 mph!). My appreciation of the desert continues. We did find a pool about a mile down a dirt road off the highway that was definitely worth the 15 pesos each.
We keep hearing rumors about two Swiss on bikes heading the same direction as us; two swiss backpackers tried to speak swiss-German to us cause they thought we were them. No luck finding them yet. Our friends from ‘World Bike Tour’ left San Diego on Saturday, so we are still days ahead of them. The other day we were sitting in front of a small tienda (like we do often) when a woman asked us in English where we were going. After a couple questions she asked, “Are you all with the special olympics?” We are still laughing about that one. Justin and I have found a way to pass the time that seems to never get old; passing stories about our mischief as young kids (and not so young kids). We might actually never run out of stories.
Overall, the biking is going well. We are hammering out about 75 miles a day and slowing disposing of the 25+ pounds of food that Justin brought with him. For lunch day we finally got some excellent bean tacos, I fired down 6 for a $1.50. Yum. We are still getting along wonderfully and excited about how the trip is materializing. There is so much more I want to write about, but it’s no fun typing it into a computer. I’ll save some stories for in person.