Joined: Dec 2009
Location: Fort Fraser BC
Day 41 Jan 8 338 kms near El Ranchito to Zihuatanejo
Took an early walk on the beach before the sun was up
I went for breakfast, and while trying to pay her, it was very clear that I needed WAAYYY more Spanish. I am able to communicate simple things, and as long as the person I am talking to is a patient with me, we do just fine. Some people, on the other hand, feel that if I am having problems understanding what they are saying, they should just say the same thing, over and over, faster and faster until I get it. Not in a mean or frustrated way, they just really think it helps. So I was trying to explain to the waitress that I hadn’t paid for last nights supper yet, and that I had a tab going, and that I would like to pay for it. I am not really understanding past tense yet, so I was having problems getting my point across. Finally I said “I came here Saturday, ate a cheeseburger, and haven’t paid for it.” ( different staff) So I finally got that I have to do to reception to get the bill. OK, no problem, I go with her, but they can’t find the bill. Turns out it has been stamped “Pagado” (paid). So now I Am trying to explain to 2 people that I hadn’t paid.
“No Pago” , “si, que pago” “No. no pago” So they phone the afternoon shift, and I got to pay my bill.
So away I heading South. I ride for a while, go past a gas station, look at my odometer, and figure I am good for about another 150 kms, so I don’t stop. . Note to self: put some gas in those fuel cans you are carrying.
Turns out it can be quite a ways between gas stations. I was getting to the point where I was starting to worry that I was getting low, so I stopped at a little tiende, bought a pop, and asked “quontos klometers a un pemaex” ( how far to a gas station). She tells be media hora ( half an hour). I can PROBABLY make it a half an hour, but…….,” is there any gas in town?” “ Yes, go back and ask at last next store”
Turns out that finding out “Yes there is gas” is easier for me to understand that the actual directions TO the gas. Finally, an older man takes pity on me and is heading that way, so he says he will show me the way.
I find the gas, she asks me how much I need, I tell her 5 liters ( the size of my gas can), so she brings out this small, about 3 liter can with a big 5 on the side, and goes to put it in my bike. I say no no, and give her my Gerry can to put the gas into.
So it fills my can up about half way, and she says “cinco liters” I say no, I want cinco liters, and she points to the 5 on her can and says cinco liters. I told her I want more, to fill my can, and she says cinco liters, cinquenta cinco pesos, so I pay her,and try to explain that I don’t care how much it costs, I want a full can. She wasn’t understanding me any more. I have to learn, in Spanish “ Look lady, I don’t care if you are trying to screw me, I really would like to have a full gas can.”
I gave the little girl some of my Canada flag gifts before I left.
So I head out, without putting the gas in my bike ( I am now questioning the quality of the gas), and the gas light comes on, so I figure I will go until I need to use the gas can, or hit that gas station. I ride about half an hour, and see the gas station. There is a fellow in a Toyota truck with his hood up, and no one else around. I pull in, ask him “closed?” he said “yup”, and that’s when I met Rob from Texas.
Rob is a happy guy, covered in tattoos, from Corpus Christi who was a Harley Mechanic and built custom bikes on the side. Turns out he really likes Buells, and was really happy to see me riding one on my trip. He had quit his job, sold almost everything, and was heading to a surfing town in Costa Rica with his significant other…… forever. Awesome. We visited for quite a while, talking bikes and the “leave it all behind” philosophy. He is also an adv inmate, but I didn’t catch his handle.
Seeing as the gas station was closed, and I was dangerously low on fuel, I figured I had better chance using the spare fuel I had bought. I smelled it. It smelled like gas, I dumped a bit out to look at it. It looked like gas but was a bit cloudy, and was just about to dump it into my tank, when a guy walks across the road and tells us that there is another gas station at the other end of town. Sweet.
I get gas and it takes 15 liters ( I hold 16) Next gas stop, I am dumping my iffy gas and filling my spare gas can.
I ride for a bit, stop for a water break, and this guy from across the street asks me where am I from in English.
So I visit with Jimmy and Ceasar and their brothers for a while. Nice guys. Ceasar is from California, but is home for a few months. Jimmy wanted to smoke a doobie with me. I decline, but tell him it doesn’t bother me if he smokes. Jimmy tells him that it bothers HIM, so don’t smoke it. They have a tank with a baby turtle they caught, and they are going to keep it a few days then release it. I gave the kids some of my Canada gifts, and gave the adults a deck of cards and some pens. Visited for a while, and hit the road. I am pretty sure I would have been welcome to stay all night, but I wanted to get rolling.
Rolled into Zihuatanejo and got a room for the night. I went for a bite to eat, came back and met Chester, a retired Polish fellow who has lived in Surrey BC for the last 35 years, and has travelled every year for most of his life. He had the apartment upstairs rented for 2 months ( nice freaking apartment)
Visited with Chester for bit, then Skyped with the family for quite a while.