Out for a walk beside the Ottawa River in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada!
Where are Kevin and Ruth now? Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Where are Kevin and Ruth going next? Heading to Nova Scotia around August 1st.

Thursday, March 31, 2016

Los Angeles area is full of contrasts

What we learned yesterday is that the greater Los Angeles area is full of contrasts. They say that the area contains about 18.5 million people, and they must all own cars. And it seems that everybody is driving them all at the same time. There certainly is lots of traffic.

But while the traffic is hard to get away from, there are a lot of places in the greater metro area where you really do seem to be away from it even though it's always very close by.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

We made it!

We were up yesterday morning at 6:00am, and got on the road right away. They were still calling for winds, but when we got up it was fairly calm. So we got a solid two hour drive in before we stopped for breakfast just outside of Palm Springs.

This was the last of our long driving days. We've now done 1,800 miles (3,000 kms) over the last two weeks since we left central Mexico.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Back to boondocking!

Not a very fun drive yesterday. We don't enjoy traveling on the Interstate highways to begin with, and that whole route from Phoenix area to the California border on the I-10 is quite simply...boring.

Add to that a strong crosswind that got worse as the day progressed. But still, we made it to our planned destination for the night.

Monday, March 28, 2016

No Mexico for us next year!

Woke up yesterday morning, and moved the motorhome to a nearby Safeway grocery store parking lot. We had been parked in a church lot, but of course Easter Sunday means that most churches would be busy.

Then, we went in to do some grocery shopping. Yikes!

Sunday, March 27, 2016

What a perfect day we had

Slept just fine in the church parking lot. Grace came over and picked us up around 10:00am. We were parked only a couple of miles from her and Steve's house.

It was nice to have a rest day without any driving. We've been missing out on getting some regular exercise, so we had a hike planned for the afternoon. But first, Ruth had a job to do...

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Almost got ripped off

Twice, in a span of about 10 minutes!

First, it was a gas station attendant trying to rip us off.

We were leaving Hermosillo at about 8:30am yesterday morning. We were on the eastern ring road that avoids most of the city, but it's still a fairly busy industrial area.

I thought I had enough gas to get us to the border. The goal of course was to arrive at Nogales, Arizona with an empty tank so that we could then fill up with some cheap American fuel.

Friday, March 25, 2016

Almost to the border!

I don't envy those who have to do this drive every winter to get to their favorite sun destination in Mexico. What a terrible drive.

But, in all of our Mexico travels we had never done the route between Mazatlan and Hermosillo. And we'll probably never do it again.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Wandering around Alamos, Mexico

Alamos, Mexico was a colonial silver mining town from 1685 until it's gradual decline in the early 1900's. At one point, there were 30,000 people living here, and in the 1920's there were only several hundred left.

Many of the mansions and haciendas from the colonial period were left vacant and in disrepair until the 1940's when wealthy people from Canada and the U.S. began buying up property and restoring these old buildings, a process which continues today. Now, there are about 24,000 people living here.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

It wouldn't be like us to take the easy route.

A long driving day for us yesterday.

Made even longer, by a decision I chose to make towards the end of the drive! Of course there was some logic to that decision, it simply didn't work out quite as well as we would have liked. Oh well. It wouldn't be like us to take the easy route, would it?

Still...I told Ruth when we got married that she would never be bored!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Sometimes, it makes sense to take the toll road!

Another good day. And, another good overnight spot.

With 323 kms (200 miles) ahead of us we were on the road by 8:30am in keeping with our goal of arriving at our destination before 2:00pm. Again, for this journey up the west coast we're staying off the toll roads unless it makes sense to do otherwise. The tolls are quite expensive for Sherman!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Not one of our better decisions...

Yesterday, the original plan was to ride the bikes the 10 kms (6 miles) into the town of Teacapan. But speaking to the manager here at Color Marino Hotel and Trailer Park made us change our minds. He said that the road is busy on a Sunday, and there are no shoulders so to be very careful. So we asked about taking the bus. Yes, we could walk the 2 kms to the main road and flag the bus when it comes along.

In typical Kevin and Ruth fashion, we decided to walk all the way to Teacapan along the beach, and then take the bus back. We only made one mistake.

Sunday, March 20, 2016

You take the toll road, and I'll take the free road

Or something like that. Or is it the high road and the low road? Anyhow, they both get you to the same place.

Some people suggest that you always travel on the toll roads while in Mexico. But we've learned that's often not the best idea. I guess people have some kind of misguided notion that the toll roads are somehow "safer", although we don't really subscribe to that.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

No charge, and with a smile too!

We had a good day yesterday, just relaxing and going for a bike ride. We even slept in! Didn't wake up until almost 7:30am. Man, that doesn't happen very often!

In the morning, Larry came over because his Telcel cellular data plan ran out on his iPad, and we tried to get it recharged again. Turns out that it's not easy for an iPad to do SMS messaging through the installed SIM card, and so we decided to go into town.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Not a bad place to spend a couple of days...

We've been in Mexico since October 19th of last year. Five full months, other than our six week jaunt to Colombia. And this is the first time we've been to the beach!

Most people come to Mexico specifically for it's beaches and warmth. And if we were on a one or two week vacation to get out of the cold, that's probably what we would do too.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Well that was a fun five hours!

One of the fun things here at Rancho Altarose RV Park is that Garry runs an ATV tour business. Yesterday, he asked if we wanted to come along as he was taking a group up to an out of the way hot springs pool at Aguas Termales Nuevo Ixtlán.

Sure...let's go!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Next time, we'll do this in a week instead of a day!

We did a long, slow, and beautiful drive yesterday on a secondary two lane road through the mountains. We've done this route before, but never all in one day!

And what we realized was that we could easily spend a week or more doing this route, and just finding places to park the motorhome overnight and explore along the way.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Another good day in Mexico

Just a nice day. That's what we had today!

Got all our internet stuff done before 11:00am thanks to the fast wifi here at Delia's Trailer Park in Etzatlan. And more...I even downloaded some old TV shows for watching later. Boy, when you don't have decent internet for a while it sure is nice to have that good connection.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Back on the road. A terrible road...

We were on the road by 9:30am yesterday morning. Only 195 kms (121 miles), but that can be a four hour drive in the motorhome in Mexico. As always, the goal is to be parked up at our next location by 2:00pm. That gives us lots of daylight hours to fix a problem, should we happen to have one.

Fortunately, we didn't have any problems. Other than one bad road!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

We're hitting the road...

Yesterday was market day, and then I had my final dentist appointment at 1:00pm. I wanted to have some lunch before my appointment, and of course brush my teeth before going, so that meant two trips into town. But we haven't had much exercise this week, so two trips walking into town was fine with us.

We left around 10:15am on the first trip. It's about two kms (1.3 miles) each way.

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Something didn't look quite right...

We had invited our friends over for dinner, and so Ruth spent much of the day getting ready. Me? Not so much. Unfortunately the kitchen in the motorhome is kind of a one person operation. Better that way anyhow. Ruth is a much better cook than me!

However, I did manage to keep busy.

Friday, March 11, 2016

You win some, and you lose some...

If all goes according to plan, there's only two more sleeps and we're outta here. Scheduled to have my final dentist appointment Saturday at 1:00pm, and then Sunday morning we'll be up early and headed to Etzatlan.

Much of Mexico has been unseasonably cold the last couple of days. Apparently they had snow in the mountains behind us, and even the normally mild San Miguel de Allende had only the third recorded snowfall in recent history.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

The smell of fresh baked bread in the RV!

There is nothing quite like the smell of fresh baked bread in the motorhome. Especially when it's a blustery, rainy, cold, windy day in Mexico.

It had rained a lot of the night before, and the wind was so strong it shook the motorhome. It continued throughout yesterday morning.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Eating out...again!

Man, the entertainment budget is taking a hit this year. But, at least we're being entertained!

We include all meals out in the "entertainment" category, although we should really include a
separate category for meals out. Maybe I'll go back into the budget and separate things.

I think we have eaten out more this winter season than ever before.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Planning our route north

We didn't expect to be here in Valle de Juarez this long, but because of my dental work it turns out that we're "stuck" here until March 13th.

While we're very happy to be spending more time here than expected, it also means that our drive up to Los Angeles area has to be done in a two week period. Which means we have to do more miles per day than we normally like to do.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Another great day in Mexico

Barb and Sal came to pick us up just before 9:00am and we went to a restaurant for breakfast. This was a little different breakfast! We had lamb with tortillas and garbanzo bean consomme.

And man, we were stuffed! Didn't need any lunch, that's for sure.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Market day in Valle de Juarez

One of the things we love about this area is market day in the town of Valle de Juarez. Saturday is the day of the weekly tianguis market, and so Ruth and I did the two km walk into town to get our supply of fruits and veggies.

When we got to the market, we met Barb and Sal there.

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Visits to the dentist and the doctor in the same day!

Ruth had her teeth cleaning scheduled for 11:30am yesterday morning. We were planning on riding our bikes there, but a real strong wind had picked up and so we decided to walk the 2 kms (1.3 miles) in to the dentists office.

Arrived at 11:25, and sure enough Ruth was taken in five minutes later.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Mexico RV Caravan group profile... #4

Okay, here we are with two more interviews with the members of the Mexico RV caravan group. We had a lot of fun doing these interviews, and we learned a little about what motivates someone to go to Mexico in an RV...and even more, what it's like to do it with a group.

This particular group appears to have been very lucky, in that they were all pretty easy to get along with. That makes it more enjoyable for everyone, including those of us who led the group!

Back on our own

The RV caravan pulled out yesterday morning at 8:00am. I took a video of them all leaving, but it's too big to upload on our not very good cellular internet connection.

There had been another couple in the RV park as well, but they pulled out a little later, leaving Sherman all by himself.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Mexico RV caravan group profile...part 3

We had fun interviewing the people that we have spent the last month with on this Mexico RV Caravan. It's interesting finding out how people decided on this kind of trip and what their thinking was regarding taking an RV into Mexico.

I remember back in 2007 when we were first offered the opportunity to RV in Mexico. In all honesty, the thought of driving a motorhome into Mexico had simply never occurred to us!

Another change of plans!

Had a fun day yesterday with the group as we rented a tour vehicle that goes up into the nearby mountains of El Tigre. It comfortably sat 20 people so it was the perfect size vehicle.

Ruth and I had done this drive with the little blue car back in 2013, I think it was. Not really the type of road that you want to take a car on, but we are adventurous and did fine.

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

A Mexican cultural experience to remember

Yesterday, we took the RV caravan group up into the remote mountains of Jalisco, Mexico to see something that very few tourists ever get to experience.

Ruth and I had been up to this traditional family mescal distillery twice before. The owner, Don Jesus and his sons have been very welcoming to our groups in the past, and so we asked Barb and Sal if they could arrange for us to visit again and this time take the RV caravan group up there with us.

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

More of our Mexico RV caravan group...

We're going to tell you about a few more of our Mexico RV caravan participants. Next up is a very independent single lady, Danielle.

Danielle (68) is originally from the area around Los Angeles, California, and is currently living full time in her class B van....although she calls Reno, Nevada home.

Back at Hacienda Contreras!

Yesterday was a travel day. Everyone was ready to go by 10:00am. It was just a short drive of 80 kms (50 miles) and so we hoped to have everyone parked up by noon. And that's pretty much what happened.

It felt so good climbing up into the mountains near Mazamitla. We've spent a lot of time in this area over the last eight years and it almost felt like coming home.