Wednesday, 17 September 2008

New friends. a better understanding of mexico and a radio interview

Solo once more. Petes gone north and im heading south still. nothing could stop me now. We rode well together. Never hard compromising, always swapping the lead easily, spending the evenings in honest chats and loads of laughter. Battling our way through the language barrier (pete doing much better than i). So after hugs and well wishes we split directions out of the town of Tepic. I head for Guadalajara and another Aon office. The sky is white with cloud and im hoping pete takes the raining season back north with him. my hopes seem true to Guadalajara. Half a days ride under a dry sky. The rain is predictable. the mornings are generaly dry but overcast. the late afternoon tends to get wet into the evening. Guadalajara welcomes me with the fast paced manic overwhelming driving i have come to love. I decide, head for the heart and see what happens. 5 hours later im lost in an overcrowded stand still traffic jam, city wide. I have spent the last few hours locating avenida mariano otero, the road the office is off, but there is no col.rinconada del bosque road leading off it anywhere. i ask numerous people " donde este dirreccion" while showing the address on paper, some understand and send me east , some understand and send me west. I know im braking the road laws coz of hoots and shouts from pedestrians, car drivers and the police . The sun is falling, the haze is getting yellow and full of atmospheric glare and i have a long way top go after Guadalajara, so after more broken laws i fly off, out of the city in an unknown direction. That was to much, i was going nowhere. No Aon today. the street system was impossible. the traffic was beyond the amount that makes things hard and im now an outlaw. Luckily im heading in the right direction. Colima is the town i want to get to before night falls and the donkeys come out and sleep in the road standing up, generaly around blind corners. I make Colima at dusk. 50 miles out of town the warm rain strikes, cooling me down no end, both physically and mentally. I need cash , so the first bank i see is the scotiabank. one i havent used before. the cashpoint says , NO! i try again. NO ! im fuming again. i leave to find a couple next to my bike. i assume they are riders on long travels, stopped for the night in this peaceful town. As it turns out Alfredo and Isobel are local. Alfredo has intentions of scarpering off on his 250 honda. So he and Isobel, his daughter, invite me to their family restaurant up the street for a coffee and a chat. i ride off to find a successful cash machine and return. We sit there at the table for 6 hours. i drink some mexican beer. we chat about mexico and motorcycles, while the rest of the family joins us. Ivonne and Gaia lucia, the youngest of Alfredo and Ivonnes 2. Lucky again for me they all speak great inteligent english. I learn about how tequila gets from the plant to the throat. i try 2 local brews, both go down easy and make the brain cells smile. How the local indians march into the desert to find Poyote to find wisdom and manhood. What mexican politics has been like since independence and a revolution. It just so happens that weekend is aniversary time of both the revolution and independence. Alfredo invites me to stay at his apartment , no charge. i stay for 2 nights. On the next day im introduced to Isobels friend, Francis, weho just so happens to manage the family radio station in the neighbouring port of manzanillo. Wonderful for the Fragile X Pedition cause, because he offers me an interview live on air for the next day. We all drive to the local volvano, Volcan de Colima, in franciss cars. A friend to greet every morning for all the locals. This beast of a cone sits alone on a flat horizon, standing over 4000 metres tall. the last eruption was 5 years ago. i missed it riding into Colima coz of clouds. The clouds are still there. we drive to the feet of the cone. a strange atmosphere lerks there. green all around, dry rivers where lava and land have spilt down the hill side over the years. its quiet. there are villages near by, where they have a traffic light system regarding the volcano. green is good, go about your daily business, orange means keep an eye on th emountain, red means get out quick ! shes gonna blow ! I only managed to see the cone from the balcony at Alfredo place early in the morning. incredible sight.. After the drive we have lunch in an old indian village named Suchitlan, where the local language isnt spanish, but Nahuatl, unforgotten Aztec. We eat tortillas, with goat meat in a thin sauce, birria barcacoa. drink chocalate drinks mixed with water. a tradition in mexico because chocolate is older than milk here, so in the old days water was used. I learn more about mexican tradition and feel alot closer to the country than before. i was just skimming the edge. I know now the mexican people are strong, resiliant, refined in their pleasures and always willing to talk openly and welcome strangers into their homes. It was hard leaving A lfredo and his wonderful family, and i thank them with all my heart. i have an interview to do on live radio. Thanks very much to francis. This is my first major break through as far as i know regarding the spread of awareness for fragile x syndrome. I arrive in manzanillo 2 hours late, but it doesnt matter. Im greeted by the freindly receptionist and another gentleman, who i forget the name of, please forgive me. Roberto my translator arrives and we immediatly hit the airwaves, via the DJ. he asks me questions about myself, the trip , my sister, my niece Sian and the syndrome. Roberto brilliantly translates. I use the leaflets that Maggie sent me to make life easier for them all to understand. it works. airplay 10 minutes, reaching a wide mexican base of people ! im chuffed to bits and am told it all went very well...Thanks all at K-lieT Radio. 93.7 FM...

Time to get my skates on again. its a shame coz now i have had contact and been eduacated about mexico i would love to ride the whole country, but that would take 3 months. i have to get going . i need to be in panama waiting for the boat to cartagena by end of september. next time !!Out of Manzanillo is the coast road running parrell with the Pacific to more or less the Guatemala frontier. The rains are here again for the next few hours till i hit the rural parts of the coast. i pass places called La Ticla, Manzanillere andbarra de nexpa. All amazing unspoiled surf playas. A few spars buildings made from coconut tree leaves dried and places on timber beams for roofing. Afew Surfers relax and greet me with peace signs and smiles. All so relaxing i could stay for a year. the surf keeps rolling in gently crashing on the sand. Night is coming fast again and im inbewteen villages. a lesson i have learned is to stop at the first available motel before at dusk. Night riding is full of suprises. 25mph for hours to the next motel. donkeys as i mentioned earlier, cattle, large lizards and very fast lane hogging trucks appear out of the darkness to test ya reactions. Anyway, i have just left Acapulco. a city splattered over numerous cliff faces. face paced, packed out and loud. potholes on all roads. a safe motel for me last night that ya pay by the hour for. people, moving around cagy all night. The sun is out and i know there is more to write but i cant, gotta get me skates on again ! The gautemala border in 2 days ! a new country ! full of a suffering history of repression. Mayan ruins and jungles ! hopefully will post from there !

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