Friday, 31 May 2013

Mexico Re-Cap

As I sit in my little living room, enjoying a glass of red wine, it's hard to believe that we travelled 14,000 kms to get back to this spot.

As always, our trip started out in the cold and grey skies that are BC and Washington during January. We were lucky to travel south with our good friends, Al & Colleen Unrau. It was fun to have someone with you. Always there are funny road stories, right guys? Like getting gas in Tepic.......By the time we had made it to Mazatlan, Al could hardly believe that he had "made it driving", all that way with their, new to them, motor home, Sunny. It does feel like an accomplishment, especially the first time. We were so happy for them!! There were LOTS of crock pot dinners on the way down. the pot cooks on the way via a 12 volt hook-up in our van. Doug liked smelling dinner at 10 am!! Jazzy, their cat, tried really hard to enjoy herself but she was waiting for the sun that she was promised!!

Sunny and Euri, ready to roll!!

 Dinner's ready!!

 I am sitting by the floor vent because I am cold and I don't see any sun yet!!!

 Al looks surprized about something!!

 Gotta have a toast!!
Well, maybe one too many toasts!!

We continued onto our destination, Valle de Juarez and Hacienda Contreras. It was a bit like "coming home" for us. So good to see Sal & Barb again. Many new friends there to meet too. Al & Colleen left in the middle of March to head for the beach - on their own!! Hold it, what about us??

See you friends! Travel safe!!
At the beginning of March, we left for a week to the coast (Bucerias) to help our good friends, Bruce and Cindy Ewing celebrate Bruce's birthday. They treated us to a wonderful day in their all-inclusive. Thanks guys!!
 Cindy and Bruce Ewing

We welcomed three visitors this time. Doug's sister, Diane came on her own in March for 10 days, all the way from Alberta. Quite an accomplishment for someone who has never been to Mexico before! Also, we welcomed our dear friends, Bob and Danna Bortolin, who came in the third week of April for 3 weeks.

Diane and Doug at the market in Mazamitla

Danna and Roberto Bortolin
We left the second week of April to head over to San Miguel de Allende for a week. Wow, we are so glad we got to this town. So wonderful, so beautiful. We met up with some friends there. Mary-Pat Sherman, Renate Hoven and Mike & Terri Church. So much fun!!
Mary-Pat, Renate, Terri & Mike...Doug and I
 San Miguel - one of our favourite spots!!
We tried to show our friends all a fun time and, more importantly, to show them what we consider the "real Mexico". The Mexico that is NOT at the resort. The one where hard-working people are around you everyday, just doing what they normally do. They are a proud, kind, welcoming people. Almost without exception, the people we met were like this. If I took nothing back from my time in Mexico, that would be it, the people. 

We had many new experiences. Like tasting fire roasted garbanzo beans, pajarete, home-brew mescal. We went to two birthday parties, parades, a caballero (cowboy) celebration, the dentist. We watched kitties grow, enjoyed the dogs and tried to love the snot out of two adorable donkeys....

 Fresh, fire roasting garbanzos...

Doug waiting for his pajarete

Look out Starbucks!!!
 Home brew mescal...

 A birthday party...
Another birthday party for Dona Raquel...
The Spring/Easter parade...
...and the Caballero parade.

...and the caballero celebration! Hats all in a cross...

A trip to see Dr. Lissett
 Mommy cat with Bandit, Chip &  Oliver
Don Quioxte...
 Nico the guard dog...
 Me and Oliver...
..and Doug spoiling Oliver too! 
...and no, I never did enjoy the veggie/fruit washing!!!
Oh, and the foot shots - you know the ones I mean. Hope you all don't think I am too weird, but here are just a few:
Mostly though we have to thank our amazing hosts, Barb and Sal Contreras. They have a knack of making everyone feel welcome. They also go out of their way to show off their beautiful Mexico. We thank you both, a million times over!!  
Barb and Sal
Our favourite, the fiesta tree at Hacienda Contreras...

Thanks for coming along!!
So, from Mexico and us, to you all. thanks for following along. We will say that this Mexico adventure, for this year, is a wrap. It was amazing and unless I re-do the entire blog in this post, I can't possibly capture all that we did and all that we learned.
BUT, don't forget us!!! Now that we are back in Canada, the adventures will continue. First adventure on the board is the trip backup to Tofino, on Vancouver Island's beautiful wild, west coast. However, we have more exploring to do in Nanaimo and I think a walk around Westwood Lake this weekend is in order!!
Thanks for riding shotgun with us - we enjoyed the company!!

P.S. - One of our favourite signs, from Mike and Kathy Barnes in Capitola, CA!!
Cheers friends!!

Back in Nanaimo

It doesn't seem possible that we left for our trip on January 23rd!! In some ways, it seems like we just left. In other ways, we feel like we have been gone for a long time. I suppose that's good!
I will catch up with our Mexico thoughts in the next post but for now, here are a few more pictures:
Grandpa explains the rules of wearing a "Dago hat" to Gus!!

Okay, okay!! I think I got it, Grandpa!!

 "The Shark" is ready for swimming!!

 Yup, we are pretty happy to see our little buddy!!
For now, here are the pictures from the ferry ride back to Nanaimo. We just "barely" made it on! Second to last car on the deck!!

 Pulling away from the Horseshoe Bay dock...

 Notice the decidedly different weather?

 Looking back towards Howe Sound. Whistler is up towards the far left, somewhere!!

Vancouver disappears in the background!!
Not much travelling this next week, well, maybe to the grocery store!! Euri goes in the shop for a check-up and a CV boot repair, next Thursday. After that, our first plan for local travel is to go back to Tofino! Yippee!!! THAT will be fun, right?! Not sure exactly what day we will leave, but you will know right after us!!
Cheers friends!!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

White Rock (Day 3-from Fri May 24))

Just hanging out with a cute kid today....

 Hey, that guy looks just like me!!!

 Hanging out with my Grandpa...

 Me and my Daddy...

Yup, I like him....
Thanks for checking in everyone. Not much to report but we are enjoying the relaxing time here. Should be back in Nanaimo by mid-next week...
Cheers friends!!