I stopped in Guerro Negro for the night. There is a full blown whale skeleton at the beginning of the local naval base. As I am stopping to take the pic, the whole base goes into high alert...a little hyperbole there, but a guy with a gun finally establishs that I can only take one picture of the whale skeleton: not two, but only one, so there you go, taken at great risk to the stability of the Mexican nation, as well as my status in it. Guerro Negro is where all? of the Pacific Grey Whales calve. There is a lagoon nearby that was discovered by an American whaler in the 1700's, and this lagoon is the mother-load of for all whalers. Now of course, we just whale watch. I was thinking how it was the early risk takers, whether they be after gold, ambergris, or ivory, who were the explorers of this world. The downside to this exploration is of course that it was driven by the need for more stuff, whether it be beaver hats, or corsets. I can't be too hard on the whalers, as it was not too long ago when the last whaling station shut down on Vancouver Island.
This mission was built and working before anybody discovered Yuquot, and Chief Maquinna was peacefully unaware of the impending storm over otter pelts..There was a notation over the door indicating 1677, I believe. You have to give the builders credit, although I suspect that the builders were the local indians that the priests had convinced that there was a bigger God than their local beliefs. There are missions, and remains of missions that are out in the middle of god awful nowhere, some being so isolated that the stories go that the Spanish solidiers accompanying these zealots (too strong a word for my religious friends?) refused to go any further. It is hard to comprehend the drive, determination and single-mindedness which sent these priests out into the New World. They were after gold of a different kind I guess.
This is the mission at Mulege, which is a popular spot with Canucks, I understand. Again, the mission is impressive and well built, dating back into the 1600's
I wanted to see the ocean and the beaches nearby. I took a side road which follows the river? to the sea, about 2 km from Mulege proper.
I rode the sand out to the lighthouse, and nearly got Blondie stuck. She was down to her rear axle, and rootsing like she has never down before. Lesson #46: stay out of the sand, dammit!
The poor young fellow at the local liquor store was trying to sell his 72 Honda. He started it up for me, and jeez it was loud. He only had 5200 kilometers on it (come to think about it, maybe second time around) and he wanted 2 grand. A bargoon...
I got up early because I finally had a good nights rest. I found my ibuprofin, and that stopped the leg aches. I was greeted by these guys as the sun rose.
South of Mulege, I began to understand why the Sea of Cortez, and the beaches are so attractive to folks.
Blondie was overdue for an oil change, and so I spent some time looking for a shop that would carry oil. A fruitless and hot hour or more was cumulated when my not so fancy but damn expensive sun glasses with a name fell off of me, and onto the traffic. I rolled to a stop, and went looking for them, but I could not find these over priced prescription lenses. Considering that I had just stepped on my regular glasses yesterday, I was beginning to think I need to spend more time in Churches, or something. Mau Jim and I bid adea, not that I liked them that much, but when a crackhead busted into my car last winter and stole my GPS and glasses, these were all that I could get. I knew then that it was just a matter of time before they were gone: anyone that buys and wears $700 prescription sunglasses needs to have his head examined, or have a good set of keepers, at least.
About an hour or so later, after some very interesting riding through twisties that would not stop and curces that kept on going, I realized that something was not right with my gut, and I knew that I needed to get off the road. These roads do not have any shoulders, and turnouts are few and far between. I was beginning to get clear indicatins from below that if I didnt get off the bike and drop my pants, there was going to be extra laundry tonite. I found what I thought would do, a "vado", which is where the natuaral runoffs are bridged over so that the highway can be kept open. In this part of the world, there seemed to be a lot of vados and bridges (puentess). I dropped below road level, dropped my pants and managed to just about beat natures' return of the chicken to the world. Shit....Mad at myself, and thankful that I had lifted a roll of toilet paper from the last motel. Well, what is done is done, at least my guts felt better now.
To get out of here... Rule Number 45: always check that you have an out, ALWAYS.. Well I thought that I had an out, but the bad news is that with no glasses to speak off, I did not see that my out also had about a 3 fout drop to the dry river bed.. Shit....I had committed, and could not turn Blonie around. Damn glasses, damn shits,,,damn chickens...Damn.
I was able to lean Blonding agianst the sied of the cut. I knew that if she went over, I was hooped. I was overheated again, and I did not have the strength to pick her up loaded. I looked at my options: unload Blondie complietly: 1 hour, drop her and spin her around: 1 hour Pick her up unloaded?? and ride out: another hour.... it was 3:30 and I knew that i had at least 200Km before dark at 7:00 pm. The other option was to try and ride her out.
I decided to dig away a cut in the bank as much as I was able to with a piece of wood that I found in the wash, and hope like hell that I could rider her out without dropping her, with me on her and thinking about broken feet and stuff.
The dry wash that started it all, or rather where I tried to get to to save my underwear...
Blondie leaning aginst the cut, with my feeble attempt to increase my odds of not going titters...
I set out my helmet as an aiming mark, I knew once I started down the slope, if I looked at the wrong places, I was going to be in a world of hurt. I used my helmet as an aiming mark, and guess what: it worked!!
This is me doing my best imitation of a happy dance. I was very happy to be out of that little shit storm, and I will never eat chicken again!
After that workout, the ride into La Paz was one of quiet contemplation, and a lot of head talking about how to stay out of crap storms like that ever again. Lucky, Luck...
Speaking of luck, i spotted the BMW sign as I rolled into La Paz. I thought what the hell, I am overdue for water, and Blondie is beginning to sound terrible with that old oil.