Thursday, January 22, 2015

Finding our Feet (and Many New Friends) on the Mainland

The heat hit us as soon as we disembarked from the ferry in Mazatlan. Heat, and a new thing: humidity.

Our goal was to reach Durango by the end of the day and to spend most of our time on the free road, which promised to be more fun. And it was :D Incredible curves climbed up and up, winding through distractingly gorgeous scenery for miles and miles. It was VERY slow going though, with many curves necessitating 2nd gear and some even requiring first. The sun was beginning to dip, and the temperature was decreasing as steadily as we climbed. Eventually, we decided we’d had our fun for the day, so we got onto the rather expensive toll road in order to make it to Durango by nightfall.

After fueling up, we were about to get on the road again when an rider on a packed-up Kawasaki Versys pulled into the Pemex.

Alex from Mexico City, with his Versys that he is riding back from Utah

We began to chat and decided to ride together to Durango where Alex had connections, and so we rode. By the time we made it to Durango, we were freezing and rather tired. Alex’s friend picked us up in the main square in front of the beautiful cathedral, and we followed him through the city thinking we would be camping in his backyard, or something.

Making new friends in Durango

 Instead, he led us to a simple but very comfortable hotel (i.e. one that offered safe parking for the bikes), where he had made arrangements for us.

The next morning, we met up with Raul, a doctor, and his motorbike Templarios group member, Gerardo, for breakfast and had a fascinating conversation with them about their worldwide motorcycle group.

Breakfast and route advice with Los Templarios

Alex asked the astute question: why the skulls and bones? I think this is a question a lot of people don’t bother to ask and simply assume that the the skull/cross bones are meant to communicate violence and instill fear. Quite the opposite, we were told that this is meant to signify that underneath whatever clothes we wear, whatever skin color we have, our basic physical essence is the same: skull and bones.

Mmmmm... Birria for breakfast. For Roel. (Goat's meet soup... nomnomnom)

Personally, I'm all set with huevos rancheros

From Durango, Alex offered that we could join him and his family in Aguascalientes. Craving spending some time with a family and wanting to work on my Spanish, we were extremely keen.

Alex touring us around Zacatecas

Some interesting highway-side art in Zacatecas - sadly, the photo does not convey how intricate or massive this installation is :/

And so we headed off, making a quick tour of Zacatecas, before arriving in Aguascalientes to the warm welcome of Alex’s Aunt, Uncles and cousins.

We spent a few days getting to know this diverse and interesting family (with 11 siblings in total, what else would you find) and it was wonderful. I learned a bit about Mexican cooking, Roel had his first mole ever and we were serenaded by Alex’s very talented uncle.

I can get used to these breakfasts!

Pollo con mole!!!

For the first time in ages, we went out to a bar like ‘normal’ 30-somethings, with Alex’s cousins. They toured us about the beautiful city center of Aguascalientes, which also happens to be the geographic center of Mexico and boasts one of the most beautiful cathedrals in the entire country.
It was a fabulous evening and a great way to end our time in Aguascalientes.

Roel, making new friends in front of Templo de San Antonio

The interior of one of the most beautiful temples in all of Mexico: Templo de San Antonio

Aguas Calientes Centro

No comments:

Post a Comment