Wednesday, June 26, 2013

To America

We woke up before the sun was rising and relieved Dad from his slumber in the truck. He took a shower in the hotel room, while we got the dogs ready for the trip ahead. No matter what lay ahead, I was resolved to reaching America this very day.

The drive was actually very pleasant. The road was virtual deserted by the time we had left Ciudad Valles, and the road curved through the gentle rolling hills. Somewhere along the way, we came across a donkey grazing in the middle of the road. I hope he was returned to his field without incident, he was so nice looking. Along the way ran into a checkpoint, but this one was different as these guys were equipped with an X-Ray scanner.

Later on we arrived at the modern city of Ciudad Victoria, and we were only a couple hours from the border. The highway after Victoria is actually pretty good, you can tell that this is a major artery for shipping in Mexico, as the road was packed with trucks heading to and coming from Texas. We had one last military checkpoint, and this was a big one. However when the soldiers saw the hounds they let us go on our way and we were at Reynosa, the border town.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Vega de Altorre and Ciudad Valles

We left Villahermosa the next morning and headed out for Tuxpan, a coastal city further north. The drive was fairly good the most part, but as is common in Mexico, a good highway can quickly turn into a narrow and crowded mess. How painful it is to go from 100 Km/h down to 70 or even lower for extended periods of time. Of course, the roads themselves are narrow and full of large transport trucks making passing range from hazardous, to impossible.

After 6 hours of merciless driving, we decided to end our journey at the tiny village of Vege de Altorre, 2 hours south of Tuxpan. These villages live off of American tourist dollars, so with the poor economy and fears of the narcos, the villages weren't at their best. No matter, we found the fairly nice Hotel Dorado on the main street and spent the night there. The place was kind of funny, on the surface it had this wonderful veneer, but when you looked closely you noticed that everything was actually cheaply made. Well, it doesn't matter as I had a nice rest.

Their food however, was irredeemable. Believe it or not, but the best thing we got from their restaurant was hamburgers for the dogs. I can't believe they have the gall to call that slop food, and charge money for it on top. I don't want to say anymore.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Tenosique & Villahermosa

We left Rio Dulce at around 9am, and it took us six hours to navigate the ridiculously subpar road to the Mexican border at El Ceibo. Leaving Guatemala was no problem, their technology is slow and inefficient, but capable enough. Mexico on the other hand was a little problematic.

Getting our passports stamped was no problem. However the truck was an issue. One of Mexico's little quirks is that anyone who brings a car into the country has to have it registered in the country. Presumably this is to make sure that the vehicles are legitimate, but I don't know for sure. Anyway, the guy in charge of registries decided to leave early, and so we were told to go to the nearest town, and come back tomorrow. With no choice in the matter, we left the border and headed to the Mexican town of Tenosique.

At Tenosique, we navigated the poorly laid out streets. There are no streets and avenues here, there are only numbered streets. After some difficulty, we found hotel La Roca, an old hotel which spends their entire budget on advertising and little else. When we approached the owner, we explained to him that we wanted two rooms, but we needed to have the dogs with us. He didn't seem to keen on that, but the notion of having $100 American was too good to pass up and he allowed us in.

I won't look a gift horse in the mouth, but I will say that they should change their name to La Roacha. The place was underwhelming, but they let us stay there, so I can give them a break.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

To the End

Tonight is my last night in Guatemala. Tomorrow morning I'm loading my things into the truck and setting off on a hellish journey back to Canada. You may remember that I wrote about Mexico (and C.A. in general) not being to friendly to dog owners. Well, that of course is still the case, so you can imagine that I am not looking forward to that.

Anyway, I want to thank all of you have and continue to read this blog. I admit, that eventually content dried up when the renovations kicked into high gear. For that I apologize. On the positive side, I intend to do some exploring in America when we get there, so look forward to that!

Sunday, May 5, 2013

A Nasty One

A few nights ago, a sudden storm swept through eastern Guatemala. We had been having incredibly hot weather for the past month, with the temperature hitting 40+ on a daily basis. Believe me when I say that the storm was a blessing in disguise.

Now, back to the storm. At around 10:30 pm, the power had gone out as it often does. Ok, no big deal I just turned on the battery powered lights and went about my business. Soon after the down pour began, and it was chaos.

The wind was moving at such ferocious speed, I found it difficult to walk inside! I heard a loud bang from the living room and went up to investigate the disturbance. The living room was like a wind tunnel and the rear doors had been blown open. I made my way to the doors, and closed them, but the wind blew them open again in a matter of seconds. I tried to shut them again, but the wind would not have it and I finally gave up. I closed a heavy metal door in a different area, and while I was successful the wind and rain made it feel like I was being pelted with hail.

Fortunately the rain was gone after a few hours. However it would take over fifteen for power to be restored.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Where I live there is no road access. Everything must be brought in and taken away by boat. That of course includes garbage. 

Every week, a large (large for Rio Dulce) boat comes and hauls away the marinas garbage. Normally this boat comes very early in the morning while I'm still sleeping, however today they came at around 2:30 in the afternoon. Here they are at work. 
What a haul!

After loading their boat, these guys sail off to a cement dock way too small for them, and haul the refuse away to be burned. 

The circle of life...

Saturday, April 6, 2013

A Big One

Earlier today, I spied a large lizard resting on the rocks. Unlike last time where I let them get away without taking their picture, I grabbed the camera and got a couple of shots.