09 July, 2015

Life is a Beach!

Guess What?!?!...We Moved! Part 2 of 3
I have been secretive for a while now because I was afraid that announcing that we would be closing La Casa Olvera and moving halfway across the country would hurt the little business flow that we had left...well we did all that!  We HAVE closed La Casa Olvera, loaded everything and then some back into the RV and made a harrowing road trip across deserts and mountains to Baja California where we now reside.  Lulu came with us of course and the newest character to join the Olvera klan is our dear friend Larry.  We are starting a new business!  A Food Truck called SeƱor Chef.  It is bold and fun and just our style.  Follow along as I divulge the adventures that have brought us to Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico in this three part series!

Now I am unleashing all of the secrets.  If you did not catch part 1… you may want to check that out first!

Life is a Beach!

We left San Miguel de Allende on the morning of June 6th.  We made a gorgeous drive winding around Guadalajara to Tepic, Nayarit where we stayed at an RV Park.  We drove through purple hills, agave fields and mango orchards.  It was magical and breathtakingly beautiful.  We were on our next adventure, ready to seize the moment, our dreams becoming a reality!  In our minds we could already smell the ocean air...

We left Nayarit and headed through Sinaloa to the border of Sonora.  The mango fields now in our rear views and nothing but hot stickiness up ahead.  We were licking our lips the whole way as we dreamed of Steak Tacos for lunch.  Sonora being famous for its beef it was all we could think of as we dredged on through sand and sun and insufferable heat.  We stopped at an RV Park in Los Mochis, Sinaloa for the night and lucky for us a taco stand just walking distance from the park.  We gorged ourselves on tender beef as the owners fussed over us as if we were long lost relatives.  Up and at `em the next day we were headed for Hermosillo, Sonora.

The further north we got the more checkpoints; which was to be expected.  We rarely grumble at the checkpoints as we are genuinely grateful for the work that the officers and soldiers are doing to keep the country safe.  The tour of the RV...or as they like to call it our “cute little apartment”... gets old FAST!  On one such tour the car started acting funny.  It was getting harder and harder to start the car each time that we stopped.  Well it finally pooped out and the soldiers had to ban together and PUSH me out of the way of the inspection sight.  Not an easy task considering it was riding pretty low under all the weight of the boxes and what not crammed in the back.  They called their mechanic to come over and he fussed with it for a little while.  But they could not get it to start.  I was awed by the fact that they had gone so far above and beyond.  They really took care of us and did not leave my side until we got it fixed...Boris of course is the one who fixed it!  Thank you hubby!!!  Boris whacked away at it, did a few little macgyver moves.  Taught the soldier boys a couple things about fixing a loose battery using a .50c piece… and we were off again.  We stopped at a Hotel in Hermosillo, Sonora endlessly grateful for A/C.

The next morning we got up early (time changes being well in our favor) and got ready to leave… we were headed… we headed for… we were ready to depart…  We didn't get ANYWHERE because the car refused to start!  We rushed back into the reception desk to recover our room key and get a phone book.  We had to call a mechanic to come out and look it over.  A kind passer by (also happening to be a mechanic) looked it over, deemed it a starter needing to be replaced and recommended a shop.  That guy couldn't come out until late morning… our chance of reaching MexiCali was dwindling.  The guy came to the hotel, said the same things the other mechanic did… he would need to take the car.  I was nervous handing the car keys over to a guy we found in the phone book… but what else could we do?  He jacked the front of the car up and told me to turn the key over.  As I did he started beating the living “you know what” out of something under the hood (I imagine the starter) a few hearty “technicians thumps” as they call it and the damn thing started!  I was impressed and willingly handed over the keys.  But purchasing and replacing parts takes time so we were stuck in the hotel another night.

Up even earlier this time and very anxious to get on the road we headed for MexiCali.  We were half way through our trip, a few thousand pesos lighter then expected and more anxious than ever to be sitting in front of the ocean drinking a super cold beer and eating shrimp cocktails.  Reaching mid afternoon Boris asked me if I had enough gas.  He believed the next gas station to be 100 Kilometers away.  I guessed that I did having no fricking clue how long a damn Kilometer was and uttered a prayer that I was correct in my guess as we headed down the road.  Little did I know we were about to cross El Gran Desierto del Altar.  100 kilometers turned into miles as we literally drove into nothingness.  Endless seas of desert on all sides and mid day sun beating down our windshields.  The gas tanks on both vehicles dwindled as we were stopped by checkpoint after checkpoint.  I have never grumbled at the checkpoints until then.  And even the dog was not having for it as she would look at the officer sideways, ruffle her scruff and rumble this low throaty growl that had me seriously doubting if she would ever bite anyone.  Finally on fumes and a prayer we got stopped at yet another checkpoint...this one had a line and I was all but in tears.  I begged the soldier, “is there a gas station near by please?”  It was less of a question and more of a plea.  He told me there was one 10 minutes down the road.  I could see by the look of Boris face he was in the same boat as me.  As I saw the gas station in the distance I almost thought it was a mirage.  The car started to sputter and shake as I crossed the last 100 meters to the pump.  We all collapsed as we melted out of our vehicles.  And the dog bit the gas attendant…

We were a day behind our original schedule, desperate to be off the road and on the beach...decision time: Do we stop at our next designated rest point in MexiCali or do we cram two days of driving into one and make the last haul of the trip a 12+ hour trek?  We didn't even think about it that long as we all jumped into our seats and hit the road hard.  Full tilt ahead for Ensenada!  We drudged on for the full 12 hours hell bent on making it to Ensenada before sun down.  We didn't stop for lunch, or breaks... just gas and back on the road.  When we entered the back roads crossing into the Valle de Guadalupe and I saw grape vines over rolling hills, felt the salt air kiss my skin and at last saw the sign for Ensenada...do not judge me when I say that I wept!  We had finally arrived in Ensenada!!!  We pulled into the RV Park and stumbled out of our vehicles onto the grass.  We were exhausted, road weary and starved.  We quickly showered and changed ready to climb into the car so that the three of us could go out to eat...right!  I knew there was a reason I had saved the one seat in the back to be free of boxes.  Now there was only two seats instead of the three that we needed.  Oops!  The groundskeeper for the park came over to us.  He said, “You must be starving and tired, please take the keys to my truck so that you can take your entire family to go and eat”.  I almost cried again.  We had never met this man and here he was offering his vehicle to us.  Tacos had never tasted so good.  We had finally made it!  And we had been received with loving open arms.

To be continued………………..
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