16.10.16 Puerto Vallarta to Manzanillo, Costalegre, México
Up before dawn this morning, after our three nights in Puerto Vallarta, we were hoping to break away before the humidity rose. However, as breakfast was included or was it? Turned out to be only fruit and coffee was free), we were held up a little bit, because although it said on the wall it started at 7.30, it didn’t really start until 8! No matter, after a couple of eggs over easy, we were back upstairs, packed and ready to wheel the machine back out of the hotel lobby, to hit the road.
Actually, setting off, there was a lovely soft breeze blowing, as we left the coast, and turned inland. Despite it feeling a very hot 23 degrees celsius for a while, it wasn’t until after our second stop of the day around 11 that the humidity built up again. We had decided to wear our mid layer jackets over t-shirts, which normally act as a wind stopper beneath our bike jackets. This was a lot better because it meant that there was no struggling with unwieldy jackets and body armour stuck to your body, on a cold clammy patch!
During a stop, about an hour away from our destination, we encountered the Mexican army en masse, they were all running into the service station to buy drinks and ice-creams, as the poor devils were riding along in the scorching heat in their fatigues and helmets. There was about 80 soldiers in total, so the queue in the shop was quite long when Paul went in for ice creams. They all had their rifles in there with them, but were very friendly and courteous toward us. We have encountered the military only at roadside checks before, since we entered Baja California, we have been through about 8 of these, and so far have been just waved through with no problem.
Today's route took us along the coast on and off, and inland a little, past much more green hills with a mountainous backdrop, followed by what must have been more arid lands, as we turned a corner to find an oasis greeting us, low in a valley. The oasis was filled with rows of coconut palms, interlaced below with banana plants- a truly wondrous sight.
The people continue to be friendly, if we smile at them, they will smile back, and sometimes have a small chat. They have beautiful smiles, and are busy people getting on with their lives, in tough weather conditions, which must dictate so much of every day for them.
Tonight we are in a small coastal town, Manzanillo. Paul has spent a long time looking at our route, and trying to find the best way for us to cross over to the east of Mexico, we have our plan in place for tomorrow, and then we shall see. We shall leave at sunrise, ride for 7 hours or so, and have time to look around, and cool down in the evening.