On the road again
Trip Start Nov 14, 2006
42Trip End Apr 2007
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Just to bring you up to date.
Our ride from Panama City, Panama to Costa Rica was uneventful. We spent one night in David Panama and one night San Isidro Costa Rica. It took us about three and a half hours to get across the Costa Rica border from Panama. Half of that time was due to the fact the Costa Rica is always a difficult entry (slowest in Central America and South America) and the rest of the delay was due to the computors not working for an hour and a half..
Since arriving in Panama, we have had to deal with the heat. We sure miss the nice cool mountain weather we enjoyed riding through Ecuador and Colombia. For the next 7 weeks, from here to Las Vegas, we are going to have to deal with hot, hot hot. It could be worse though, we could be in Winnipeg Canada.
We had a great two weeks in Costa Rica with the kids and grandkids. Visiting butterfly farms, catching trout for lunch, hiking down trails beside waterfalls, a little surfing on the beach, a little time at the pool. And one of my favourite, an afternoon nap (after my noon hour beer) most days.
from left to right. DAVID DOLEZSAR, KARYN DOLEZSAR, LEONARD DOLEZSAR, ETHAN DOLEZSAR, KARL VAJDIK (Monica's Dad), MONICA DOLEZSAR, AND CASSANDRA DOLEZSAR.
During one of my afternoon naps Karyn went shopping with David, Monica, Cassandra, and Ethan in Escazu, at probably the highest end mall in Costa Rica. She came back all excited about the great adverture they had. I expected that she must have found some shoes on sale for half price, or else got lucky and found a parking place right next to the mall extrance, or something just as exciting. I was close:.......They all got stuck in the middle of a gun fight. There was some sort of robbery, a car chase, shooting, etc all happening in the corner of the parking lot where they were walking. Fortunately no one was shot or run over but I guess it was pretty scary. I certainly hope Karyn learned a lesson from all this. I explained to her that for the last three and a half months we went shopping every day at outdoor markets or in back alleys in almost every South American country, including Colombia and never had a problem. I then tried to explain to her shopping is very safe as long as she stays out of the expensive stores and the expensive malls. I donīt think she believed me; but some people just never learn.
I forgot how much energy a three and half year old and a 15 month old could have. My bedtime was often not much later than the grandchildren.
We left Costa Rica and the grandchildren at 6 AM on Tuesday March 6. and crossed the border into Nicaragua. We spent that night in Granada at a real nice hotel--even had air conditioning. No hot water though, but that is common in Central America. And it is really not a problem as cold water in these countries is luke warm.. Nicaragua is a charming city with cobbled streets and a bustling gringo life; one of Latin America's oldest towns.
On Wednesday March 7 we left Nicaragua and crossed into Honduras. We arrived at the border crossing and found 19 Motor Homes from North America in line ahead of us. Most were from the US, but there were also a number from Canada. I visited with a couple from Iles de Chenes who are orginally from Thompson and are good friends with my neighbour in Winnipeg. I also visited with a couple from Newfoundland and a couple from Campbell River. I had a great time visiting while Karyn processed all the paper work to get us through the border. They were all retired or semi retired and very positive and enthused. I guess that is to be expected from people who choose to travel through Mexico and every Central American country in a motor home.
We arrived in Jicaro Galon Honduras in plenty of time to find a good hotel but there was only one good hotel in town. It was almost perfect with air conditioning and a pool. The only problem is that they would not let me bring my bike into the lobby. They told me that my bike would be perfectly safe outside as they have a security guard on duty 24 hours a day. But they were unable to find the security guard at the time I was enquiring about how secure my bike would be. The next best hotel had great parking for my bike, right under my window and behind a locked gate. The room was a little spartan. (That is my word). Karyn called it a dump. Just because it only had one light bulb, no air conditioning or overhead fan, no bathroom door, and water about 10 minutes each hour. But it could have been worse, and the important thing was that the bike was safe.
On Thursday March 8 we left our room at 6 AM in order to make sure we were all processed through the El Salvador border before any of the Motor Homes arrived. We also left at first light because we could not sleep as the room was terribly hot. I forgot to mention that the room did have a mirrored ceiling, but Karyn could not see any value in that either.
Anyhow, I was determined to make it up to Karyn in El Salvador, so I found this perfect resort which was located about 7 KM off the highway, not too far from the Guatemala border. Sort of a honeymoon place, I thought. I knew I could get us there by 3 PM if we did not have too much trouble crossing the El Salvador border. Well the border crossing went well and we turned on to this dirt road by 3 PM. Just 7 KM to the resort, we were told. Well it was 7 KM to the village, but little further past the village to the resort. That little further ended up being another 5 KM of a sand road. Somehow we managed to get the bike down the sand road, without it falling, (the honey moon went out of this resort location every time the bike slid and almost fell). We did finally arrived at this beautiful resort. Well almost arrived. The only way into the resort was to ride another 300 yards down the beach. The beach was soft, deep sand, and it was just not doable on my bike. With no secure place to leave the bike we had to retrace our route and head back to the highway and on to the next town, which we knew was at the Guatemala border. Not a very enjoyable ride back through that sand with my passenger continually asking me why I would try to ride to a hotel that had no road. How do you answer question like that?
The good news is we arrive La Hachadura, El Salvador before dark. The bad news is we arrived at La Hachadura. Only two hotels in town, and they made the one we slept in the previous night seem like a 4 star hotel. We did not know which of the two to take as they were both so bad, even for me. In desperation, we rode around this little town and found a third hotel which was better. Karyn was not happy with this third one, but is was much better than the first two. Same concerns, she did not like the fact that there was no bathroom door, but we had our own bathroom, which was better than the other two choices. I think the hours we spent on the sand road put Karyn in a critical mood as she was not pleased that our bathroom had no sink for her to wash her hands. You would think that with a shower and a toilet, she would be pleased. Mind you she did seem to cheer up, when I asked her how could I shave and she suggested I use the toilet. I am sure tomorrow will be a better day.
Tomorrow morning we will cross the border in Guatemala and I think I will start looking for a hotel about 11 AM.
GREAT RIDING - ALWAYS ALERT FOR WILDLIFE