Wednesday, August 09, 2006

A Trip Away from Chacala

Maybe my ride out of Chacala (courtesy of Tuffala)
I am spending hours at a time looking at a map of Mexico some nice people left for me last winter. They were camping next to me on the beach, and were kind of enough to leave me a large, clear map produced in Germany. Written in English, luckily for me. I don't know if I could read the German names for Mexican towns.

I have been looking at the towns to the north-east of Guadalajara, including Tonala, Queretaro, Guanajuato, Jalpan, Cadereyta, Las Pozas mostly. But last night I realized that it might make sense to make a run to Nuevo Laredo, the US border, since I would be in the neighborhood anyway. Sort of. So now I am looking at the websites for Monterrey and some other towns on the way north.

At the moment I am just collecting information: cheap places to stay, botanical gardens, etc, distances/buslines. I think I will just take off to Guadalajara in a few days, timing it so I can check out the Tonala street markets on either Sunday or Thursday. Coming or going. But probably as my first stop.

My birthday is Sunday and that would be a nice birthday present to me. I am especially looking for a nice gift for my sister-in-law, who mentioned being interested in Mary/Maria/Guadalupe etc. So that will be fun to look for. Plus, I like those things for myslef too. And something for my brother. My son is coming down in a few weeks and he could take those things back for me. Rather than chancing the strange ways of the the Mexican Postal System. Not that the US system is anything to be proud of.

I have been asking people if they have noticed anyone selling plants at the Tonala markets. It sounds like you could walk forever and not see everything. And I have been looking at photos of the cactus/succulents at Cadereyta. It sounds like you can buy plants there. And I am curious about the old missions near Jalpan. Also curious about Guanajuato and SMA, but will probably skip those places. Maybe not.

I am inclined to just take off with my map and Lonely Planet/Mexico book and follow my nose. Someone I lent my first LP/Mexico guideblook to tore out all the Guadalajara pages, and then someone gave me another, new copy. I lent that one to someone else who abandoned it in someone's car. It ended up near Detroit. And has been in the US/Mexican postal systems since the end of May. I am hoping it will get back to Las Varas/Chacala before I leave on this little expedition, but I am not very hopeful. I am thinking about asking my son to bring one down by they cost $26 and I don't want to spend the money. Maybe another one will show up. Stranger things have happened.

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