In Between- (a post from Mike!)

In between Spanish and English, pesos and dollars, ocean and mountains, dry hot weather and cold humid temps. Trailer and “home” which is now the van, and so many others.

Herein lies the difficulty in living in the “free zone”. I work in English, stumble in Spanish, Get confused by word tenses and where the verb is supposed to be. Just when I am working it through someone speaks to me in English and I am back where I started.

The Mexican folks are friendly in every exchange. But in general the Americans take better care of things. Mexico is “tranquilo”. It’s taking awhile for me to slow my pace. The deeper we go into the country or away from the border towns the easier and more natural tranquilo gets. Trying to get used to the different traditions is fun too.

We had another vehicle issue caused by the roads. Another in-between type issue. Safford and the 50 plus miles off-road driving combined with the potholes in Mexico caused us to stop to tighten up some wiring. We were working on the side of a one way street in Caborca. Five POLICE vehicles stop by to help. They call an officer who speaks English to assist. We ended up having a politicians escort to a hotel to make sure we made it. Have not been that protected in a long time. We went out for dinner. They charge us $8 bucks and round the bill down. Again, just very different.

Once again loving it. We will figure out the vehicle. I have no doubt about that. The troubles are ending up as lessons learned and blessings in disguise.

So as not to travel at night we stopped in a sleepy little village (Bacoachi) and inquired about a place to camp from an elderly man standing outside his shop. He brought his buddies out and they brainstormed a place for us to camp. They eventually settled on the town center known as the zocalo (around the church square). They warn us that it is Saturday- it could be noisy and the next day will bring lots of church activities. I announced my arrival to the chosen parking space by backing into the sidewalk with the bike rack/hitch. A loud “kerchunk” and a piece of the walkway crumbled off. Everyone looked- and then looked away. No one cared. The police cruised by and we asked them if we can park there for the noche- sure, they say! It has been confirmed with them so we are fine.

Everything seemed fine until we heard a Norteno band practicing in the open gymnasium. Yes, basketball is big in this town and they have one of the only covered gymnasiums on the circuit. This place has no restaurants, one gas station and one church, one little grocery store. But thy have a huge gymnasium. Well, turns out there will be a benefit dance for a sick little guy (Hodgkins Lymphoma according to the poster). The dance started at 9pm.  We went in to see the action. There was a live band with matching white hats, plaid shirts and a bank of loud speakers. They were playing drums, electric guitar, bass, accordion and an enthusiastic 12 year old on the bongo drums! We could not understand the words, and most of the tunes seemed the same to us, but the crowd loved it.

You would never know that so many people lived around there. People came in and danced up a storm. Girls looked at the boys and the boys checked back. All the men danced while carrying a beer in the left hand. All the women were dressed and made up completely. It was like being at a high school dance in the states, except for the beer. And, no matter how old these traditions were that we were watching the smart phones had to come out. Everyone seemed to have one!

We returned to the van at about 10:30PM to sleep. It is a good thing we were tired, because that town stayed awake until about 3:30AM and we were right in the middle of it. No one bothered us, and we did not seem to bother them- as they partied all around us! The dogs kept watch until they could not stay awake any longer, then we all slept through till about 7:30AM. We awoke, packed up and hit the road for another set of adventures.

plaza parking bacoachi

bacoachi sidewalk chunk

Bongo player!
Bongo player!

7 thoughts on “In Between- (a post from Mike!)

  1. It was a funny situation. We were trying to be so stealthy- when actually we were in the center of it all! I am sure folks noticed us, but no one bothered us. Even the local dogs seemed to walk way around the van!

  2. Keely- Thanks for commenting. It keeps me on task! And I am not kidding when I say that we are researching the possibilities of shipping the van to Australia!

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