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Old 04-28-2007, 03:14 PM   #61
Johnny Dakar OP
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Location: Just 3 Short Miles North of Baja
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Day 3 - San Quintín
to Bahía de los Angeles - 207 Miles - Tuesday, March 20th




DAWN AT...DON EDDIE'S


I awoke to the sound of Clay’s voice. “Forty e-mails.”

Apparently he had Blackberry reception.

“Forty fucking e-mails.”

It belied equal parts anger and amazement.

I needed coffee. Then my morning constitutional.

I pulled on a pair of shorts and a t-shirt and staggered outside.

Good morning, baby:



She’s so pretty with all her gear off--like she's been waiting all night for me.

In the lobby…Mmmmm…big urn …filled with…coffee-flavored warm water. I would learn that in Baja, unless you made it yourself, this was as strong as coffee ever got.

And I’d left my stove, my coffee press, and 1.5 pounds of freshly ground French Roast at home to save space because, surely…certainly they’d have, at the very least, the wherewithal to brew some Johnny D for danger euro coffee somewhere down there.

Because after all, Soy un gringo, sabes?

I mean, they had a Wal-Mart in Ensenada, for Christ’s Sake.

But no. For now, there would be only sparingly used Folger’s. So I’d just have to make do with quantity in quality’s stead. But I’m an addict—eventually, I will find a way.

Anyway, got my coffee, swilled a cup while I wandered around the dirt parking lot in the still, quiet, warm morning air.

Looks like I'm not the only one with a sexy looking ride between me legs.

German girls are hot...



Don Eddie’s, man. Place has character.



Speaking of character, I ran into our generous host…



…and I took a picture of him in mid-blink. Damned viewfinders…why was I too cheap to buy a camera with a bigger one?

Anyway, a second cup of coffee, back to the room, grabbed my copy of Long Way Round for a bit of, ahem…reading, and into the bathroom. Clay was still working on his Crackberry.

A MIGHTY WIND

So I’m sitting there, reading…when I hear the wind suddenly pick up outside—aggressively. “What the hell was that?” Clay said. I could hear him get up. Then, what felt like a shockwave slammed into the hotel with such force that I heard the eaves and the roof strain and creak--only the force of the wind was sustained. It wasn't just a gust...it was a massive squall. It sounded like the nails that held the roof on were pulling out of their beams. Uh oh, I thought, not a great way to go, sitting on the crapper. “John, you need to come out here and see this,” he called from the front door. I really wanted to, but conveniently, at that very moment, I was right in the middle of a rather large…paragraph…and I needed to finish it. The instant I could, I jumped up and opened the sliding glass door at the rear of the bathroom, only to be blasted by this brutal wall of air and dust.



It was like this gale off the open Pacific was disintegrating the far side of the bay and blowing it onto our side. The bay was filled with whitecaps and a streaming cloud of dirt. I slammed the door shut., but only after it had ripped some of the vertical blinds clean out of their sliders.



No longer had I started thinking how the hell we were going to survive this thing when it stopped as quickly as it started. It was like the passing of some great, enraged beast. That was strange—from silent and stock still to raging, 70-knot winds, then back to silence. Fortunately, the bikes were in the hotel’s wind shadow, so no damage came to them.

That we’d have to do ourselves over the course of the trip.

Well then…now that I don't need any more coffee--for any reason--a shower and the hunt for breakfast begins. The parking lot was littered with a few dead palm fronds and one large sheetmetal structure from the roof—which I politely returned to the front desk. I poured myself another cup of joe--out of habit--and we went upstairs to survey the damage from Eddie’s deck:



Hm. Clear as a bell. Whaddya know?

Oh, and yes, incidentally, those are volcanoes. Welcome to Baja California.

No breakfast up here. We went next door to The Old Mill. There, the missionaries were all frolicking about (they were, for the most part, teenagers), walking talking, preparing for the day. There was no obvious place to eat, so we stopped into the office (where my sticker was still proudly announcing its presence among the other, lesser stickers), where we met Sue--the manager.

"What the heck was that?" I asked, referring to the wind. "That happen very often?"

"First time I've seen anything like it in my 12 years here. What can I do for you guys?"

"We're looking for a place to get some breakfast."

She sent us next door to The Old Mill Restaurant, inside the actual, orginal Mill. What they "milled" there, I never asked, but I surmised it was powered by tidal flow in and out of the bay. It was a mini-museum of sorts, and I could have learned more, but you see--I was hungry.

And I know, as an Adventure Rider, I'm obligated to photograph all food consumed in every ride report, but I forgot my camera...I promise, there will be many more pictures of food. I'm sorry. Now leave it.

BREAKFAST WITH MIKE AND ELIZABETH FROM SANTA BARBARA

It was a large, empty, surprisingly nice place with tables and tablecloths, and as was often the case on this trip--and I've no idea why--we were the only ones there. Except for Mike and Elizabeth. We sat at the table next to theirs, overlooking the bay. Truly a delightful couple, down from Santa Barbara to camp and ride their dirt bikes.

I didn't transcribe the entire conversation, but the gist of it was, Mike was one of us--an excited big kid with a lot of toys...including bikes, cars, exceptional stereo and home theater equipment, but more than anything, he was interested in cutting horses. Apparently it was a hugely expensive hobby about which they were both terribly passionate. Yes, Mike had money, the lucky devil, and a stunningly gorgeous intelligent wife as well. Elizabeth, like me, was learning how to ride in dirt the best way: the hard way. I found in her a bit of a kindred spirit (or maybe I just developed a slight crush). We spoke for about an hour, finished breakfast, and Mike offered to give Clay some duct tape--he used it for cushioning his footpegs...apparently the vibration on the road was nearly unbearable for him. I caught a pic of them as we were all leaving:



Truly a pleasure meeting the two of you! Buen Viaje!

We took a look at the map, and made our biggest decision of the day: either San Ignacio or Bahía de los Angeles, depending on how far we got.

I could get used to doing this every morning. Oh wait--I am.

Johnny Dakar screwed with this post 05-28-2007 at 03:02 PM
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Old 04-29-2007, 10:25 AM   #62
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BAJA, WITH HER ARMS ALL AROUND ME


We headed south on Mexico 1



--and up into the Mesa el Rosario, then down into the town of Rosario for gas and water. Busy Pemex there. chatted with a firefighter from L.A. on his way home--we told him we were headed for Cabo. He asked for a map, and showed us directions to a house he owned down there. Told us we could stay there, no problem.

WHY is everyone in this place so GENEROUS?

Who the hell cares?

So we stop off and top off, then back on the road.


Clay dangles his legs when he rides on asphalt, because his LC4 shakes like a diesel-powered vibrator. He made nearly every road mile on this trip dangling his feet, his left hand, and using his right palm to control the throttle. He'd tried padding his pegs in wads of t-shirt secured with duct tape, but his hands and feet would still fall asleep long after he got off his buzzy bike. I felt a bit guilty about it, because we were still better off doing this than me riding the whole trip in the dirt. Neither one of us foresaw it being as much of a problem as it was, so we made do and got on with it.

There was nothing else to do about it, so I just rode my bike.

You know those days when you go for a long ride, end everything just falls into place perfectly?

Perfect weather...


Clear, clean two-lane, not too oily, not too old, with nobody on it...



Twisties and sweepers with elevation changes...



Good friends, good family...



...your iPod set to shuffle, can't seem to find a bad song all day...



And over every hill...



Around every bend...



You were stunned...



by breathtaking view...



...after breathtaking view...



...after breathtaking view...



...after breathtaking view.



You know--



--one of those perfect riding days?



It was like that.



Only better:



It was like that...in Baja.

Somewhere, halfway between San Quintín and the turnoff to L.A. Bay, I inhaled...left everything behind me...stopped worrying about everything to come...took a good look around me...enjoyed the music playing in my helmet...and exhaled.

Johnny Dakar screwed with this post 04-29-2007 at 10:37 AM
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Old 04-29-2007, 10:53 AM   #63
thadcon
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Nice job Johnny. I'll be heading down in a few weeks and these ride reports are really helpfull for little bits of info. Keep up the good work.
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Old 04-29-2007, 10:56 AM   #64
Little Faus
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Eek Yikes!!!!!!

Costco! Are you sure you're in Mexico? Salt Lake City looks more Latin than that (except for the beach). Good report, though.
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Old 04-30-2007, 12:44 PM   #65
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Jonesin'

C'mon Johnny, I back here in Ireland missing Baja like crazy. I need my fix man
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Old 04-30-2007, 01:05 PM   #66
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yer Maun
C'mon Johnny, I back here in Ireland missing Baja like crazy. I need my fix man
Sorry Maun--five hours work, eaten by my computer yesterday. Much more to come.
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Old 04-30-2007, 02:20 PM   #67
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woohoo! just caught up with this today, i'll be waiting on some more reports! great photos!
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Old 05-01-2007, 04:21 AM   #68
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Nice!
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Old 05-01-2007, 10:42 AM   #69
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny Dakar
...five hours work, eaten by my computer yesterday...
Sucks. We've all been there. We all know better...
The chronology of Johnny's Sunday...

:grinner


















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Old 05-05-2007, 09:35 PM   #70
Nixels
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Wink Exhale & enjoy - kinda like directions from God

"Somewhere, halfway between San Quintín and the turnoff to L.A. Bay, I inhaled...left everything behind me...stopped worrying about everything to come...took a good look around me...enjoyed the music playing in my helmet...and exhaled."

JD, this is a stellar piece of writing/reporting and visual documentation. It's obvious that your editing skills for the video box trained you well as a writer.

Keep it comin' because you give the feelings immediacy, but I don't have to visit Crankytown to read about it.

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Old 05-09-2007, 07:32 PM   #71
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Excuse me, MR. Dakar, can I have some more please?
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Old 05-09-2007, 09:01 PM   #72
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Thumb Excellent

Just what I needed...another thread to keep up with Very nicely done & great pics. Thanks for taking the time.
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Old 05-12-2007, 03:58 PM   #73
Nixels
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Talking Playing catch-up

Quote:
Originally Posted by heynowref
Excuse me, MR. Dakar, can I have some more please?
Hey leave Mr. D alone, he's waiting for the n00b's to catch up. See the post above
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Old 05-12-2007, 05:43 PM   #74
Johnny Dakar OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandiegoland
Sucks. We've all been there. We all know better...
The chronology of Johnny's Sunday...

:grinner


















lol....
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-Simon Thomas
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Old 05-22-2007, 01:36 AM   #75
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You are related to Antware aren't you?

Finish what you started.

Leave us hanging like this!

That's the problem with addictive personalities with ADD. Obsessively compulsive and highly productive and creative but only for as long as the mood takes them then, "Weyhey! Will ya look at that over there! Here, let me have a go..." and what ever they were "commited" to doing comes to a grinding halt.

Pricks!

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