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November 26, 2015

Day 4 Gila Bend, AZ to Ciborca, Sonora, Mexico (Thr 11/26/15)

Update: I am alive and well and resting peacefully in a luxurious inn in the town of Ciborca, in the state of Sonora, Mexico.

Starting Odometer: 34,251
Ending Odometer: 34,538
Miles Driven Today: 287
Miles Driven This Trip: 1,205

The sun is setting and I'm looking for a room for the night in the town of Ciboria, Mexico. You've never heard of it because it's not a big tourist destination. Just a town I have to pass through on my drive down through the mainland of Mexico. 150 miles ago, I was in beautiful Rocky Point, drinking beers with strangers. Now, I'm lost in a 3rd world slum at dusk. This is not where you want to be. This is a bad feeling.

When I say I'm in the slums, imagine dirt roads, disheveled people shuffling about, devoid of ambition or morals. I've been lost in slums before. It's never fun. I keep back-tracking and then taking different paths, looking for the sign that says "Rich White People This Way", but I can't find it. I can't find anything.

Every turn I make, I try to keep straight where I'm at. See, for some reason, I don't have the GPS maps of Mexico. And I rely on them pretty heavily in the U.S. Now I'm in a country where, when the people talk, they don't make sense. I have no GPS maps. And I think I mentioned it's getting dark, right?

It didn't need to be this way...at lunch, I was sitting out on the deck at some cool restaurant and bar in Rocky Point, basking in the sun. I introduced myself to a group from Flagstaff, and we sat and drank Dos Equis in the warm sun, peeling off clothes and the time went on. It was decadent. Anyone with a brain would never have left that place.

But then, there's me. See, my plan wasn't to move to Rocky Point. Just to check it out. So, after I've had a few beers, I decide that I'll try to make it down the coast a little further. Maybe to Point Lobos, for instance.

Of course, without the GPS, this is a little tricky. And then, for some reason, I don't understand the people down here when they talk. Like...in my mind...I was fluent in Spanish. But in reality, I have no idea what they're saying, as it turns out.

After consulting a map in a Pemex gas station with the attendant, he convinces me that, if I want to go further down the coast, then I have to go to Ciboria. Which is hard for me to grasp, but undoubtedly true.

And, as it turns out, it's about 150 miles
So, I headed out for Ciborca.

Now, the roads so far have been marvelous for the whole trip. The road to Ciborca is something less than marvelous. Far less. So I'm rolling across this broad desert. It reminds me a lot of Baja california. Some parts are cacti and desert. Some parts are grassland. Always, in the distance, mountain ranges say 20-30 miles away. And you're just sort of rolling through this unimproved desert.

There are a few sections where the land is irrigated, but I'm not clear what it is that they're growing.

I can't read the road signs, because they're not in English. Some of them I remember. Some I don't. But I do know which ones mean "speed bumps" (hint: TOPES). And also I now recognize the signs that indicate a dip in the road that would, in theory, allow water to cross were it ever to rain.

So, that's about the extent of my comprehension of the traffic rules, adn I just open it up and I'm running 100 mph towards Ciborca because, let's be honest....Mexico is a lawless land.

There's some sort of secondary check-point. The guy asks to see the title to my bike, which I provide him. He also wants to see my VIN number. Verny unusual in my experience, but I show it to him on the bike and he lets me go on my way. So, I'm racing east towards Ciborca, across these enormous swales that allow water to cross, and then I we get into the pothole section. These are pretty bad potholes. Big, deep, wide...so that anyone with any sense would slow down, but I just sort of scoot over to the right a little and keep racing at 95-100 mph towards Ciborca.

Just as I enter the town of Ciborca, I see a Pemex station and pull in. Ask them to fill it up. All they have is verde. OK. Good enough. Aks there where a hotel room is, and they say about 1 km back down the road is a hotel, I just passed it.

So I go back west 1 km looking for a hotel, but the only place I see looks more like a gated condo community. It really doesn't look like a hotel/motel. So I driving through the slums of Ciborca, trying to find a hotel/motel, but am not successful. Plus, every turn I take makes me wonder if I'm going to be able to find my way back.

Now, I'm toying with the idea of driving back to Rocky Point, or driving down to Point Lobos. Either way will be a 2 hour drive in the dark.

This really sucks. Being lost, in a 3rd world country, at night, with no place to go. And not being able to speak their language. THis just sucks. Maybe I'm getting to old for this.

I decide to go back and plead my case with the guys at the Pemex station.

"Donde mi hotel?" I ask.

This time, they tell me the name of the hotel, which side of the road it's on, and how far it is. So now, I deicde to give it another go. I have nothing to lose. So I drive to where they told me, and there, sure enough, is the place. It's called Eternia, as they indicated. But this place looks like a gated condo community. As I'm rolling through the parking lot, my front wheel drops into a massive hole in the driveway. It should have been covered with a metal grate, but this is mexico. We're doing the best we can. I'm not sure if it damaged the wheel or not.

I stop for a while and observe them. I see a woman come out.

As it turns out, this is a hotel. And a fairly spendid one at that. Each room has it's own covered garage. Of course, it's pricey. They need $40 a night for it. Ouch.

I check in and get a nice warm shower and climb in bed for the nite, sick, exhausted, and glad to be alive.

Steveo: I didn't miss Rocky Point. It was spectacular. I has having internet access issues last night. :P

Posted by Rob Kiser on November 26, 2015 at 6:15 PM


Did you miss the turn to Rocky Point?

Posted by: Steve on November 26, 2015 at 8:32 PM

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