How to read the signs
Trip Start Dec 01, 2009
29Trip End Aug 01, 2010
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The most dangerous thing we´ve encountered in mexico are "topes" or speed bumps. Let me tell you, a mexican topes is no ordinary speed bump. Firstly they are lethally sharp and pointy, which means you have to slow down to no more than 5km/h to take it on, otherwise the suspension not only of the car, but also of the occupants, will take a serious beating. Secondly, they like to hide in the most unlikely places: in the shadows of trees, along a lonely stretch of road (in theory a highway), or in the middle of nowhere. They will jump out at you when you´re not looking and chuckle when your heads hit the roof of the car, accompanied by the requisite screeching of brakes. Most of the time the topes sign appears right alongside the bump (often hidden behind a tree), giving you no time to react at all. Sometimes they are not even sign posted. Hence, the passenger is not only the navigator, but also given the all important duty of topes-spotter!
Then there are the other more subtle signs. Like, how to track down the perfect beach (for us). For instance, when the guide book suggests a great surf spot, it´s most likely to have huge intimidating waves, perfect for those hardcore surfer types, and not mere novices like us. And if there is a billboard with a picture of a surfer on it, that´s a bad sign. And so, after leaving Sayulita, we went in search of a quiet spot with little waves and not too many tourists.
pengs: we drove down Michoacan coast (as a side note, this 250km stretch of coastline is unbelievably beautiful. If deserted, white sand beaches and palm trees are your thing, you have to spend some time here if you are ever in Mexico. The road is windie-windie so the 250kms is likely to take you 6 hours to drive it, but wow, it is really worth it) and stopped off at Boca de Pascuales (perfect tubes that break hard onto the beach and grow to 10m in the summer!) then to Ticla (heavy beach break that we actually tried to surf and got smashed about with).
nadz: We hop-skipped-and-jumped down the coast, until we eventually got good at reading the signs, and found ourselves at tiny Saladita (not on any of our maps or in any guidebook - a great sign!). Spent a few lovely days, including xmas, sunning ourselves, surfing perfect mini-waves, eating great food and chilling in our newly-acquired hammocks.
pengs: The surf here was perfect. A left point break with little waves that go on and on and on. (Adam: we are finding the pocket! It´s incredible how easy it is to surf when you´re in the right place on the wave). Xmas was celebrated with a surf as the sun was rising (yes, even nadya was willing to get up before sunrise to get those waves), chilling in the hammock drinking beer, eating way too much food and sharing the beach with dozens of mexican families.
Now we´re off to Mexico City to meet up with Guillermo and his friends for some good times in the crazy city.....