A Labyrinth of Loneliness

Trip Start Jul 04, 2010
Trip End May 10, 2011

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Where I stayed
Posada Los Crotos

Flag of Mexico  , Jalisco,
Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Ajijic to San Luis Soyatlán 25.75 mi/ 41.5 km 

"Why do all the women in Mexican movies cry?", Michelle asked. "Because they live in a labyrinth of loneliness", Arturo replied. Why are they lonely? Michelle asked. "Because Mexican men are cruel."  Arturo said.   www.hostalcrotos.com

But wait. Let's not get ahead of ourselves.

We woke reasonably early and found two jumbo avocados dressed in salsa waiting for us on the breakfast counter. What a treat! 

We had a hard time leaving the place, but 'bout 10, we pushed our bikes up the cobblestone incline to the main road and turned west under a clear blue sky. Today we  headed   counterclockwise on Lake Chapala. Just out of Ajijic, a 5 mile long paved bike path began. It has a concrete barrier separating it from the main road. What a treat!  After the the 5 mile path ended, we were pushed on to the main road again. Then shortly thereafter a broad shoulder began on the road for plenty of clearance from the bike traffic. We could see another path to the right, but only parts were paved and parts were pretty rough. We stayed on the road. All in all, we had 10 miles of safe riding. We came across a colorful condo development overlooking the lake and popped into the sales office for some information. The receptionist, perhaps not seeing two cyclist as legitimate prospects, brushed us off. Never mind then.. Who knows, we may have been serious, mightn't we?

We rolled into the large town of Jocotepic and down the main street which is pretty bumpy with potholes and poorly repaired sections. And stop lights. We had not seen those for awhile. We found the main square and stopped for a bite of lunch and ice cream. A motor cycle club arrived and we were happy that we were seated first. As we sat on square enjoying homemade ice cream, a Jehovah Witness struck up a conversation with us. Where you from? Where you going? What interesting things have you seen? We wondered how long it would take before he would pop the question. We said we had to go and he reached for a copy of the Watchtower and asked "are you..." "No Thanks!" we said cutting him off. "Okay, have a nice day...." And we proceeded to do just that.

We rounded the end of the lake and soon had the sun at our backs. We had only 2 to 12 inches on the right side of the white line, but most traffic kept its distance. The traffic was fairly light but rarely did a minute go by without a cluster of cars and truck rumbling by.  A few jackasses came too close and one even laid on his horn. Was he trying to scare me? Reminds me of a bumper sticker I saw in Guadalajara which read 'Honk Horn to See Finger'.
We arrived in San Luis Soyatlán and thought a bowl of fruit would hit the spot right now. We parked our bikes and walked over to a very busy stand on the side of the road. Most people were leaving sucking red color juice from baggies they just purchased and driving off. We asked a young woman what is was. "BAM POO ROW" she said. Looks good, judging by how everyone is sucking them down! The we spotted the sign advertising "Vampires", Mexican 'sangrita' (orange juice and salsa valentina or Mexican chili powder), lemon juice, Squirt, ice, and TEQUILA. It ends up looking like watermelon juice. The popular stands are the ones that use the most tequila. It was really nice to see so many drivers enjoying them as they got back into their driver's seats. We will pass for now... 
We found the only hotel in town the Dolphin. It was a rundown three story affair, build in the 50's with dark rooms and saggy beds. It looked clean enough and it was cheap. And the desk clerk was cute! We did not really want to go further and we did not want to stay either. We decided to check to see if this was really our only choice. Dave walk down the street while Michelle waited by the bikes. A few block down, he asked a woman in a tiny store about a place to stay. She suggest the Dolphin. Ah, I know the Dolphin.,.Es no bueno, esta otra otel cerca aqui? She rambled off something in Spanish that there was a restaurant down near the town square that rents rooms, tres cuatos derecha..... Sure enough, Dave walked ahead and there is was, with a big sign that said English Spoken. The front door was open but nobody answered the bell at the inside door. Perhaps they stepped out. Dave asked around and nobody seemed to know that there was a posada/hotel right there. And nobody knew where the proprietor might be. We decided to roll our bike down and wait. It did not look like much from the front. But it could not have been worse than the Dolphin.

Michelle went in and shouted "hola'. A man came running out to help. Ah, the bell is not working, he gestured. Pase (come in). Dave waited with the bike while Michelle went inside. Soon Arturo, the bilingual owner arrived. Yes! They have a room. The 400 asking price was negotiated to 350 with breakfast or 300 without. Michelle said okay, we'll take it with breakfast. But when Arturo saw our bikes, he said..Okay 300 ($24US) with breakfast. We parked our bikes in the garage and were ushered in to find, not a hostel with tiny rooms facing the noisy street. Instead, we found an elegant B&B with styling cues from a Tuscan Villa, with rooms in the back with a view of lake Chapala and winding  wrought iron staircases.

After a warm shower, we relaxed on the veranda for a bit, watching Ajijic accros the lake, before heading down for dinner to the covered terrace overlooking a lush garden. Arturo informed us the menu for today was fish with cilantro sauce or chicken in a sweet red sauce. "Sounds good" "We will have one of each!" But first, we will have a Margarita and a beer... Arturo's assistant arrived with a tasty Margarita. We had a toast to Yolan and Laron's aniversary and soaked in the wonderful ambiance. This is not "roughing it" !
Delicious soup arrived followed by the main courses that were prepared to perfection. And then a delicious flan. We were in heaven.

Dishes were cleared and Arturo came out for a brief chat. Two hours later, we were still chatting.

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gwen prater on

Hi Guys,
I am glad you did not stay at the Dolphin and you found the wonderful b&B. I know that Margertia tasted good. smile

Be safe. TaKE CARE.


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