No truer words were written. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
The plan for Friday, as made on Wednesday, was for us to follow Bill and Carol inland to El Fuerte. Having been there numerous times before, and therefore knowing the way, they were excited to show us this beautiful colonial city.
And well, we were pretty darn excited to a. just follow in behind and b. see this beautiful colonial city. After all - as much as we love the warmth and beaches we really do want to see the real Mexico and it's people.
All started out well........
Behind our leaders leaving Huatabampito, out the road we came in a short three days ago. Funny it didn't seem near as bumpy or as long as it did on the way in.
Back on the toll road headed south. We passed from the state of Sonora into Sinaloa - Mexico's 'fruit & veggie basket'.
An inspection station, I can't remember what this one was for ..... there seems to be quite a few along the way. I think this was the agricultural inspection station.
Yup - that's right - this is the one where the guy spoke perfect english and had his guy come over and lean into our van. Then the first guy says - "He smells marijuana." Hmmmm. Nope - says Derek - and holds up his smokes - maybe these. As we were about to drive away the guy says - "How about giving us $5 or $10." And that was American dollars - not pesos - that would have been 65 to 130 pesos!!! Derek - thinking on his feet says - "Are you collecting for the ambulance or something?" as we had seen earlier on. The guy says "No." So Derek says - "No pesos" shrugs his shoulders and drives off. You gotta laugh. The guy figured he'd try us with the marijuana - guess we fit the profile. He wasn't all that sure of himself asking for money so it wasn't too hard to get away without paying him.
Ahhh - you gotta love Mexico, and it's less common now practice, of mordida.
At El Carrizo we made a U turn on the highway to make the turn east to get on the road to El Fuerte. This is sort of a back way into El Fuerte. Bill had mentioned that is was a good but narrow road and at times we'd have to go slow due to tractors and such.
We all found out together that the road is under construction!
No worries -- look -- they have a detour set up.
Hmmmm - it's looking a bit rough......
Hmmmm - it's lookiing a bit narrow......
Hmmmm - it's looking a bit small ......
(Later Carol told me that she calls these 'Oh shit bridges.' Yup - pretty sure that was going through my head as we approached. It would have certainly come out of my mouth if we didn't have a minor on board.)
Hmmmm - it's looking a bit dirty.......
Well, we were definitely taking the 'back way in' now! The detour wasn't exactly well marked. At one point Bill stopped at an intersection. Which way? Thankfully Bill (being from Argentina) speaks Spanish and was able to ask someone driving by.
This way, that way........
All went well again until we came to a T - we needed to go right. As we were waiting for the traffic to clear I looked out at the road and thought - oh no - how are we going to fit. I mean - seriously - aren't we taking this narrow road stuff a bit far?!
And here it is! Well, if Bill and Carol can make it so can we. But what if another vehicle comes?!
Where'd they goooooooo?!!!
Close your window!!!! Choke, choke, gasp, gasp.
Ahhhhhh - finally back on the 'real' road. I didn't get a good picture but just before this the detour ended with a major 'Oh Shit bridge'. I almost couldn't watch Bill take it on.
One last little detour. Nothing after what we just did!
So, after that hour or so of Mexican backroads....
..... the sticker on the back of Bill and Carol's jeep that says
YOU CAN FOLLOW ME - BUT IT'S GOING TO HURT.
Made absolute sense.
Getting close to El Fuerte.
Yaaaa - we have arrived - pulling into Hotel Bugambilias.
And getting settled in our spot on the grass. We are backed in so that we could run our extension cord into a hotel room for power. Interesting system but it works. Well, sort of - there were a lot of power surges.
The shade from the trees along the front of the hotel were our saving grace. It was hot!
Bugambilias (Bougainvilleas) perhaps?
I bet you Moonie is looking at a lizard.....
Amazing flowering trees here at the Hotel. I thought you'd enjoy - particularly if you are knee deep in snow and ice up there.
Two pictures of the Pulmerias (as provided by Carol). If only the picture was a scratch and sniff. Unbelievable fragrance.
One of the workers - Martin - brought us two toronja and mandarinas to eat.
Must be bugambilias.....
We arrived in El Fuerte Friday afternoon and booked in until Monday morning - 450 pesos - a great deal. Our hosts were lovely people. Cassia and I spoke briefly to the Owners daughter - she is a preschool english teacher. On Sunday, the Owner waved us into the kitchen when Cassia and I were walking around and presented us with a delicious bowl of soup. Everyone was very friendly even though we could only speak to them a little - decimos un pequeño español, ellos dicen un pequeño inglés.
If you love looking at historical buildings you'll LOVE the next post. We spent Saturday touring around El Fuerte.
B E A U T I F U L .........
TODAY'S INTERESTING LINK: For an even better rundown of the crazy detour we took to get to El Fuerte by Carol - check out her blog over at The Golden Years. She's has some great photos that I didn't get - especially since they were in lead position. The guy that asked Bill if he was Mexican was the same one that asked us about marijuana. He was on a roll.