Friday, October 05, 2007

Quick Trip to Puerto Vallarta

Today was one of my twice-a-month adventures from Chacala to Puerto Vallarta, and home again. The trip started out well. I walked down to Juan’s store to catch the collectivo with a really nice woman who lives in San Diego, and whose parents were born in Mexico. She had just spend four days at Aurora’s. But she couldn’t stand the humidity and left a few days early.
Views of Chacala, mostly from the rooftop patio on the roof of Casa Monarca.
The dark collectivo pulled up as we got down to the store . We didn’t have to wait for a minute. I went on into Las Varas to catch the Pacifico bus. Usually I get off the collectivo at the Crucero, at the highway. Then take another collectivo to La Penita, and catch the Pacifico to P.V. there. But I was enjoying talking to people in the van and forgot to get out at the Crucero.

Our timing was very good, again. As we pulled up to the main signal in Las Varas, the Pacifico bus pulled up the little depot. I ran ahead across the highway, and pointed out A. coming after me to the driver. He waited with a smile, loaded up her suitcase, and we headed off.

When we got to the Sayulita turn-off, about ½ way to P.V., there was big traffic jam, with trucks and cars all pulled over on the highway, past the intersection and on down toward P.V..
I don’t know what was happening, but the police waved us over, and pointed to Sayulita.
The older, newly remodeled units of Villa Celeste
The next thing I knew we had left the highway to P.V. and were on a long-cut to P.V. via Punta de Mita. We were on the “new” road. I was on that same road 5 years ago, on my first trip to this area. And it was a horrible dirt road. Now it’s all paved and some is super-highway. Yuck!!!

I was worried that A would be late for her plane, but we only spent about 35 minutes on the long-cut. And we got to look things over on Punta de Mita. That’s a peninsula on the north end of the Bay of Bandera. Surrounded by ocean on three sides. It’s a great example of what government officials seeking additional income together with developers gone mad can do in just a few years.

The Federal government’s tourism development agency, FONATUR, cleared most of the local folks off the Punta de Mita, by force in some cases. And sold off the entire peninsula to developers. Very ugly. Very sad. But the rich got richer and the poor got poorer. What’s what we’re all here on Earth for, right?
This structure is going to be either 3 stories and a roof patio with palapa,
or 4 stories (clearly illegal) high, depending on who you talk to.
I always warn people to leave early when they head for the airport. Partly because P.V. is one hour earlier. But also because there are wrecks and construction on that road all the time. You never know how long the trip will take. But this was the first time we actually couldn’t go on the highway at all. I guess I will never know what happened.
Got to the outskirts of P.V., near the Corona factory. I got out to catch the city bus, and A stayed on to go to the bus terminal and then the airport. The city bus came within a minute. I got off the city buses to do errands, a total of six times. All six times the city bus i never had to wait more than a minute for a city bus. What timing!!! What an excess of buses.
Ended my P.V. day at Walmart, looking for a new diabetes med, which still hasn’t arrived. Then I caught a gray ATM bus at the north bus stop in front of the Walmart parking lot. It was apparently just waiting for me to get on, because he took of the very second I got on board. I almost slid down the aisle, we took off so fast.

Got to Brucerias, got off at the Pacifico terminal. The Pacifico bus pulled right up behind the bus I was on. But it was the Express bus to Guadalajara, and that bus usually won't take us lowly Las Varas passengers. But this guy let me on. Another “no wait”. Excellent!!!

I rode on the front reclining luxury seat and watched our maniac driver pass every car and truck on the road. There was a movie on, with Queen Latifah driving a cab like a maniac. I guess the movie inspired our driver.

Got to L.V. and started carrying my stuff toward the collectivo stop. Usually, when I have a bunch of stuff to carry, I take a taxi if there’s no collectivo waiting. This time I didn’t see the Chacala collectivo as we drove by the stop. But as I headed back that way I heard someone calling my name. It was Samuel, the collectivo driver. He had just pulled up to the stop. He and Gracia walked up the street and helped me carry my stuff.Another “no wait” for me. The van was really crowded and hot. 15 adults, one kid. Very crowded. And the signal light took hours to change before we could finally get moving. Once we were moving the temperature dropped from probably the high 90’s in the van to bearable.

That was an excellent trip. Left at 8:15am and back home at 4:00. Usually it’s a nine or ten hour round trip, but everything just clicked this time.
This home in Chacala was just completed. Lots of consideration for climate issues.
Good cross-ventilation, natural light, rain protection, water runoff.
I really like this home, and the owners too.

Got home early, and the water guy had turned the water off early
(usually it’s around 5pm). So no water. The “boys” downstairs used all the water up today. I had a couple of buckets of waters stashed for just this kind of emergency. Oh, well. The water will be on about 10am, most likely.

1 comment:

Tom said...

I love your journies. It's like we're there with you. I still wonder if I could live without air conditioning.

Cooler weather is around the corner though