Sunday, December 30, 2012

THE HILLS OF PATZCUARO

Thinking that today would be dullsville, hanging around here at the RV Park, I WAS planning on FINALLY getting to my post about our thoughts on being van dwellers versus - umm - being trailer dwellers. I have all sorts of things to talk about on that topic from how we feel about our little, now named, van, the changes we MUST make and those we would LIKE to make. 

That WAS the plan, that is until Derek said those few little words "Let's go for a walk." 

Sounds innocent enough right?!

TRUE.

BUT you don't know Derek - well - this part of Derek anyway. If you are with him and he mentions - a walk - take your lunch!

I have been suckered into those few words so many times now it doesn't really bother me - I am either in for a walk, in for a hike or in for a death march. I've SURVIVED them all! Cassia on the other hand is just learning. The poor dear, so unsuspecting.

I don't know how many times I have heard "Well it would be a shame to stop now..." as we are half way up a mountain - it happened to me on Mt. Arrowsmith on Vancouver Island and it happened to me at Rockhound State Park in New Mexico. It has happened in many ways in many different locations over the years..

I didn't even see today's ADVENTURE coming - no water, no snacks - nothing. At LEAST I had my running shoes on.


Our walk began through the neighbourhood adjacent to our RV Park. Just LOOK at this CLIMB - must be a 45 degree angle for sure. Good thing they don't have snow and ice here - can you imagine driving down or up this road in those conditions. I shudder to think!


An impressive view from the top. Obviously some upscale homes.


We could JUST see the lake. 


 Derek went a little higher and zoomed into the Isla Janitzio - we're going there tomorrow.


 At the end of the paved road we noticed a trail - hmmm - well, let's take it. This is a picture looking back at what we just climbed you can see the green and orange house that we were JUST standing beside.


Ahhh - sometimes you just have to shake your head and laugh. As we were looking out from a viewpoint Derek heard a scraping sound. We looked down to see this truck taking off the corner of the roof as he was TRYING to back up. Derek zoomed in to get a good shot.


If you can believe he just kept going - even though at one point he got out of his truck to survey the damage. I guess he figured the damage was done already.


At this point the trail headed into the forest. The trail was pretty clear at this point - judging by the bottles and such it is obviously a bit of a party place.


Every now and then we were provided a great view of Patzcuaro - this is looking towards el centro.


Nice for Cassia to be able to run - Roofous is just ahead of her.


Somewhere along the way the trail went from well used to something more like an animal trail. We were pretty optimistic that it would continue. At this point the smart thing to do would have been to turn around and head back. Don't try this at home!


Beautiful plants and flowers along the way. It made us feel nostalgic for home - hiking in our ponderosa pine forests.


Cassia 'Little Walker'






For the twenty minutes or so before this picture, things got a little dicey. We no longer had any type of trail and really - we had NO CLUE where we were. Derek kept going ahead to see that we could get through. The term - bush whacking - comes to mind. Cassia was CLEARLY not having fun anymore. 

But in the end we made it to this road - old cobblestone - amazing that it is way up here in the hills. 


As we followed the rough road down we came upon this road - passing a few very nice houses. This one to our right was very large - the car you can just see to the right was a Mercedes Benz with Texas plates.


A cute little house we wouldn't mind calling our own.


And a restaurant of all things tucked up here in a neighbourhood. We were pretty happy to see this place. Just before it was a sign for the Hotel La Casa En El Bosque, this was GREAT news. At the beginning of our walk, not to far from the RV Park, we had seen a sign for this hotel. 

Thank goodness we hadn't gone and gotten ourselves completely lost with little energy to spare.


We came down the road to the left.


There seems to be several abandoned properties on our street. A nice gate to this one.


Another Wood Clan possibility. This house also looks abandoned - just IMAGINE what we could DO with this place - and the garden! It appears to be for sale.....


You just gotta LOVE google maps. Tonight I decided to take a look at where we hiked today - here's my attempt at our path - the street's are right - I took a bit of liberty with the forest part.

WHAT A HIKE!

We were gone for about 2 or 3 hours. We were SUPPOSED to be resting after our walk around el centro yesterday in preparation for our trip to the Isla Janitzio tomorrow.

Somehow I managed to walk over to the Bodega Aurrera - owned by Walmart - later in the afternoon. Nice to have a grocery store so close - darn that I have to be in another Walmart type store. It was busy with the common sound of very LOUD music playing on the outside and inside. A peculiar thing about Mexico - all that loud music.

I almost thought I was seeing things when I saw a box of 'black tea' in the tea section, VERY hard to come by in Mexico. I ALMOST had hope that there would be a bag of salt and vinegar chips waiting for me in the chip isle - but no - I really shouldn't hope for so much. Plain chips, cheese chips, chilli chips - take your pick.

Ahhhh Mexico - how I LOVE thee!

AND not that numbers matter ..... but we were pretty darn excited to see that we passed the 70,000 mark today! 

Teresa

TODAY'S INTERESTING LINK: I JUST found another travel blog to follow - anybody else following Chedder Yeti? Who knew? Dennis and Jeanette are behind Motornomadics that I linked not to long ago. Their BUS is very COOL - watch the video! Makes me want to start looking for our own Wanderlodge.




11 comments:

  1. Try mapmyhike.com for tracking your hikes. It tells you elevation etc. as well as distance.

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  2. Another fun (relaxing?) day, so much to see and do.

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    1. Not much relaxing for us - Cassia see's to that! LOL

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  3. HI guys, guys. Glad to see you are still having a great time. We miss you here. Here is another blog for you to check out. Maybe you have seen it already though. http://bodeswell.org/ These folks were here a few years ago and are still on the road in S America. You have a happy new year. Barb and Sal

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    1. Hey Barb! Sounds like you guys are having a ton of fun - I'm sad that we are missing it! I've been following bodeswell for a few years now but didn't realize they had stopped in at your place - pretty neat. We have (had) hopes of doing what they are......seems like a long way to drive now!

      All the best to you, Sal and family in 2013!

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  4. Nancy (my sweetheart) would tell you I've done the same thing as Derek on more than one occasion. Have to admit those "walks" keep you young, but "Little Walker" may have had a bit harder time with no drink to wet the whistle.

    That old cobblestone street may have been a development which went south, no punt intended and possibly part of the residual real estate boom/bust we had in the US.

    Do you guys take notice any emergency medical facilities before or after entering a township? What if something happened in Mexico to one of you (lets say a broken leg or chest pains). Do they have medical facilities that can handle this type of mishap? Does your insurance cover it in Mexico or do you need to buy separate accident or health insurance for Mexico?

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    1. No Brian we don't look for emergency facilities - we do in Mexico as we do in Canada or the USA - if we need them they'll be there. We have every confidence that we would get the same - or better - medical treatment if we needed it here, as we would at home or in the US. If an emergency were to occur we also have confidence that anybody around us would be there to help.

      Our Canadian medical does not cover us in the US or Mexico. Before we leave home we buy travel medical insurance -- $867 for the three of us for $10 million. We've done that for the last 3 years and thankfully haven't had to use it.

      The cobblestone road was old - really old - as in 100 years old......

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    2. I didn't know about the medical/emergency facilities and how all that works in Mexico and you haven't mentioned fire trucks or the likes :) I was thinking about Nancy & myself when traveling down there in the future. I never really thought about it much in decades past when on a week jaunt, but I am now.

      Living in Seattle I knew a little about Canada's national health care and how it works and heard good stuff from most Canadians (not Americans). Living in the States 40% of the citizens don't have any health insurance. Now, being next to the southern border again, I realize I know even less about Mexico's infrastructure such as the healthcare system. Do they have ambulances and fire trucks? Your tricking me! You haven't shown me any pictures of any emergency services in Mexico; no police, no fire trucks and no ambulances, but you have shown us lawyers offices.

      I can see it all now, I'm being placed in a wobbly wheeled mule drawn cart and taken to the emergency care facility, which btw is in Dr Scarface's barn. Using a rusty butter knife as his scalpel, Masa as the dressing and corn husk as the wrap he'd have me all fixed up and looking like one hot tamale! See that's what I picture in Mexico; I really don't know how it all works, I'm ignorant about the topic. Actually when it comes right down to it, all you really need is a great lawyer :)

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    3. Brian, Brian, Brian! Yikes! Well, this is a tough one for writing right?! But I'll give it a shot - the short version. I can only go by what we have seen since we have been in Mexico - I bet some of my fellow Mexican traveler/blogger friends could do a better job then I can. But here goes....

      We have definitely seen ambulances and fire trucks - they look just the same as at home. There is no way that you will see a photo of police on my blog - it is one of the main rules here - no photos of any of the police - municipal or federal. But rest assured they are everywhere - keeping us all safe!

      Except for the small villages in the middle of no where perhaps - to us the medical treatment you would receive here in Mexico would be very good - as I said I would have just as much confidence going to the doctor here as in Canada or the USA and even more so! Mexico seems to have a very good health care program as far as we have heard - everyone gets care. Therefore I think it is closer to the Canadian system then the USA. Our Canadian system is better than the American - but no system is perfect.

      Sadly, there are so many myths about Mexico - it is a very strong Country. Of course there are poor here but there are everywhere - to us it seems that most Mexicans are doing very well for themselves. Did you read the article that our friend Chris wrote? He has lived in Mexico for the last 28 years. http://livingboondockingmexico.blogspot.mx/2012/12/fallacies-about-mexico.html You could also write him questions, I am sure he would be happy to answer.

      Or how about this article - Mexico has a quickly growing middle class and we can see it here.

      http://mexicotoday.org/article/keys-mexico’s-economic-ascent

      You should be able to see by our photos the nice cars and nicely dressed people!

      Come to Mexico and see for yourself! Nothing to be afraid of!!!

      T

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