Thursday, October 26, 2006

Los Barriles, on the east cape.

We left Playa Tecolote yesterday around 10.  I could have used another two or three days there, but we will come back.  I never did get to sample the restaurant -- they were closed by the time I walked over.

The drive down from La Paz was beautiful.  The road was mostly in good condition, with a few washouts and some mud in the vados from the September hurricane.  Some of our caravan found it a bit challenging, but we thought the road was not unlike many of the back roads of California, Nevada, or the Pacific Northwest.  In other words, curvy, hilly, and narrow, with minimal shoulders.

We have been told that most of Baja is essentially the same, as far as the road is concerned.  So if this is the worst Mexico has to offer, we have concluded the horror stories are greatly exaggerated.  Actually, we sort of expected so -- we have the sense that the folks decrying the condition of Mexican roads on the various bulletin boards and other forums seldom venture far from the Interstate in the US.  Anything less than two lanes in each direction, with a broad shoulder for breakdowns or just goofs, constitutes hazardous driving.  By contrast, we try to stick to two-lane blacktop, even when the Interstate is parallel and a hundred yards away.

We are now in the small town of Los Barriles, on the east coast, at the East Cape RV Park (map).  The entire town is full of American ex-pats, including the park owner.  Prices at the local businesses are clearly marked in US dollars, and everybody speaks English.  I'm afraid we left the "real" Mexico (whatever that is) behind when we boarded the ferry.

Louise was finally feeling a little better last night, and we walked over to the closest local eatery for dinner.  The food was quite good, if highly Americanized, though we have definitely moved into the realm of tourist pricing -- dinner was $30, whereas a similar meal on the mainland would have run us half that.

The RV park is also pleasant, although struggling back to its feet from the hurricane.  There is a nice pool and hot tub, and the grounds are nicely landscaped.  There is also a coin laundry (US quarters), and Louise is taking advantage this morning,  We have yet to visit the beach, which is two blocks away; perhaps this afternoon.

We are here for two more nights, before heading further south to los cabos.  Today we will relax a bit and perhaps walk around the town, and we hope to take a pleasure cruise on the gulf tomorrow, if the fishing charter guy doesn't book the boat for another day of billfishing.

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