01 January 2011 | Chacala, MX
28 December 2010 | Chacala
27 December 2010 | Between Mazatlan and Isla Isabella
24 December 2010 | Mazatlan
24 December 2010 | Mazatlan
24 December 2010 | Mazatlan Plaza Machado
13 December 2010 | La Paz Channel
10 December 2010 | Off El Mogote, La Paz, BCS
07 December 2010 | Marina de La Paz parking lot
07 December 2010 | Marina de La Paz
25 November 2010 | Marina de La Paz
23 November 2010 | Marina de La Paz
18 November 2010 | Ensenada de los Muertos
17 November 2010 | Los Frailes
Easter in Amsterdam
27 March 2016 | Amsterdam - Centrum
Penny / 45 degrees
Amsterdam - City of Water and Brick
What a great walking city. Because the city is geographically small, you can easily walk the concentric canal streets and see the entire city. Your choice: travel the well-beaten paths from the Red Light District (first it's a shock! Like you accidentally looked into someone's bedroom and saw a naked person!) and Damrak and the museums . . . or you might choose to discover the side streets with their friendly cafes and shops.
Mind you, not everyone walks! You take your life in hand every time you cross a street. Do a 360 check first or you could be hit by a bicycle, motor bike, tram, car, or truck. There are traffic lights for bikes, people and cars.
Amsterdam is the most bike-friendly capital city in the world. There are almost 900,000 bikes in this city! Each year between 12-15,000 bikes are fished out of the canals! The train station has a 3-story parking garage for bikes alone! Any-Hoo, enough about bikes.
Yesterday we bought a 24-hour ticket for the canal barges (probably because the prior day Fred and I clocked 6+ miles on foot - he's a good sport!). Today is our last day (if we can get on the flight tomorrow as its booked full, sigh) - we are going up to Dam Square and find an outdoor coffee shop and people watch, along with breathe in wisps of that peculiar smell of pot. Love it here!
23 March 2016 | Amsterdam, Amstel River
Fred/suns out but chilly
Penny was going to go to Amsterdam and she invited me along so here we are. We are in a lovely apartment on the third floor overlooking the Amstel river only a few blocks away from the center of town.
We arrived yesterday morning an hour and a half late after a 6 hour layover. Our connecting flight was several hours late. Arrived in Amsterdam at 10:00 and got on the train to town. That is when we heard of the bombings in Brussels. As we were waiting in Philadelphia for our flight, one went out to Brussels with only about 60 passengers and since we are flying space available, Penny said "hey, want to go to Brussels first?". Well we stayed course and came to Amsterdam.
The weather here is winter and about in the 40's but nice and bracing. Last night we went out to an Italian restaurant and had spaghetti. The afternoon was spent having a snack, market shopping (Penny) and a nap (me).
This morning we are making contact to see a canal barge in Leeuwarden about an hour and half drive North. I have a call into the broker to set up a time so we will head out for breakfast and await his call. More later.
Trust me, it's not San Diego
16 February 2016 | Durango, MX
Funny story on the way home. We left San Miguel today after going to OxxO for coffee, the propane plant to fill our propane tank, Mega for croissants and then to pick up our chairs. He wasn't there yet so we waited a few minutes and Penny had a guy next door call on his phone and he said he was on his way. I was a little skeptical as we are in Mexico the land of manana and even though we told him 4 days ago that we would pick up the chairs on Monday morning. He had to string them and my clue was when Penny asked what time he opened, he replied "I am a Mexican, I do not know what time I open". Well it all turned out great and we were on the road by 10:00 AM. We headed for Zacatecas where we thought we would stop for the night but we got there about 1:30 and decided to push on for Durango. After all the horse is heading to the barn so don't want to waste any daylight hours.
Arrived at 6:00 PM and started looking for a hotel with secure parking as there were no known RV parks in town. Made a try at one in a shopping center but the parking didn't look secure so we continued on. Just before the end of town we spied the RED motel boutique. Looked new and clean with secure parking. We drove up to the gate and a young lady finally came out and between Penny's try at Spanish and her not knowing a word of English we finally discovered we could get room 41 but the van wasn't going to fit in the garage. We finally got her to allow us to park it along the curb inside the motel grounds and went to our room. Funny layout, no front doors but each unit has a roll up garage door. Once inside your garage you find the door to the room. Surprisingly it was very contemporary with red glass shower doors, big screen tv and nice king bed. Lots of indirect red lighting and a mirror on the ceiling over the bed! It's starting to come in focus now as Penny said the sign in front said you could have a room for a night, 12 hours or 6 hours. Figured that you drive up with your honey and announce your room number and the gate opens and when you get to your room the garage door is open. Drive in, park, close door and nobody knows who came in. You can even order food and drink sent to you room which is delivered by a dumb waiter or someone puts it in this compartment so no one sees anyone. The tv was on to a music channel but a few clicks and porn was on. No additional charge as we could see. Also discovered a complimentary condom in the ash tray.
Had a great shower that just dropped out of the ceiling and ate our take out pizza. So an ambien for a good nights sleep and up early for the drive to Mazatlan but we will go north of there as far as we can.
Oh by the way, the room was $400 per night. That's $21.00. A bargain. Love Mexico!
Penny's Two Cents
14 February 2016 | San Miguel
Pen - Nice weather, but SD is hard to beat!!
Penny's Two Cents
Wow, what a wonderful time in this special place - it's definitely going to be hard to leave. It's the exuberance that I love most in all of Mexico. Right now I'm hearing drums beating, birds, kids laughing, campers enjoying happy hour, people singing and church bells ringing. There's no particular sense to the church bells either which is part of the quixotic charm - for example the bell just rang twice, paused, then rang 58 times, paused and then one single gong. And of course it's never "on the hour" or half, quarter, or whatever! Any-Hoo, no matter ( except that now it has my attention and I'm counting and it's always different! )
My sweet Freddie (my Valentine) and I are going out for dinner at a place recommended by many since we've been here. Italian with a Mexican flavor! Sending our love right out there to each one of you!
14 February 2016 | Angela Peralta theatre, San Miguel de Allende
Fred/warm in the day and cold at night
We went to a Flamenco concert last night with our new friends Victor and JoAnn from Victoria, BC. First we had dinner at the Baja Fish Taquito restaurant on the roof which was a mistake as it was windy and cold and the food so so.
But the best was yet to come as we made our way to the Angela Peralta theatre where we had balcony seats. We met a couple from Virginia while waiting for the doors to open and when they did the six of us found center seats on the first row of the balcony, unobstructed view of the stage.
The curtain opened on time at 8:00 and on stage were 3 guitarists, a drummer, two singers (a man and a women) and 4 dancers, one of which was a man. The girls looked very pretty in their long dresses and the man very handsome. The music started and the dancers came out and what a show. They would usually feature one of the dancers and they were really good. There was a fourth girl that came out later and did a couple of single dances and she was amazing. Such stamina with the heel and toe clicking and the foot stomping. Intermission at 8:45 and the second half started at 9:00. I think we got out at about 10:00 after being throughly entertained. Great music and dancing!
The cost was $100 pesos each or about $5.30 at the exchange rate I have been getting. I would have paid 10 times that amount!
The exchange rate we have been getting from the bank ATM's is about $18.50 pesos to the dollar. Subsequently things are a bargain here. The food is great and you have a hard time spending $20.00 US if Penny has 2 margaritas!
Alas, but time to start heading home and we leave San Miguel tomorrow morning first stopping at OxxO for coffee, then the propane station for propane, Mega for chocolate croissants, and finally the last stop to pick up the two Acapulco chairs Penny found. Just hope that they will fit in the van. If we don't leave tomorrow I will have to rent a U-Haul to bring stuff back! So on to Zacatecas through San Luis del Potosi.
What's wrong with this picture?
12 February 2016 | San Miguel de Allende
What wrong with this picture? First I have on a long sleeve t shirt, a sweatshirt, and a fleece jacket. To top it off I bought a neck muffler for $100 pesos to keep my neck warm.We left San Diego in mid January to get away from the cold and El Niño rain for a few months. I forgot to research the weather where we were going and found ourselves in the mountains of Mexico at 6200' in San Miguel de Allende and 7500' in Patzcuaro. And, to boot, caught a cold that left me with a nasty cough for 3 weeks. The temp at night drops to the mid 40's and hits the high 30's in the morning. Daytime may hit the low 60's but of course the locals tell us we are experiencing some unusual cold weather. Glad we have a good furnace in the RoadTrek to take the chill off.
We have the San Diego Union app on our iPads so we get to read the morning paper only to find out that San Diego has been enjoying record heat in the 80's. Damn missed it again but we are in a beautiful place and glad we made the trip. Will be heading home in a week or so and I'm sure El Niño will be back in SD to greet us.