Wednesday 6th July to Thursday 7th July
After a lazy start and a well deserved lie-in for Ed, we packed up the bikes and headed off in different directions, at least at first. Ed needed to top up his phone in town, and I was headed to the town of San Ignacio.
I left Guerrero Negro around 1pm, and was pleased to find that it was nice and hot with a cool breeze, however the comfortable temperature was short lived. It got hotter and hotter as I rode away from the coast, to the point that I was really struggling to stay awake. Heat like that while riding is actually really dangerous, as you’re eyes get really heavy and even roll around in their sockets, as you desperately try to keep them open. The painfully straight and empty road for almost the whole way didn’t help either, but I managed to overcome it by concentrating intently on my Spanish lessons that I often listen to in my helmet. Thankfully I really enjoy listening to them and learning, and I think that without them I would have almost certainly crashed that day from falling asleep.
After a routine military checkpoint (where I get great joy out of watching the guys trying to comprehend what they’re seeing as I pull up), the flat terrain eventually gave way to mountains, and it actually reminded me of Nevada.
Thankfully I didn’t get any horrible flashbacks from our time crossing that endless expanse of land, mountain range after mountain range, and before I knew it I’d arrived in a different world. I pulled over on the side of the road and looked out over a huge area of lush green palm trees, not quite believing my eyes. San Ignacio is a true desert oasis, and was a welcome change from the endless flat dry plains of the Baja desert.
It was absolutely sweltering as I rode down in to town, so I stopped at a restaurant that offered shade, food and water. I was absolutely gasping for a drink, and the ice cold bottle of fizzy water complete with ice crystals certainly didn’t disappoint, nor did the monster meal I managed to order for my lunch.
There must have been half a cow on my plate, along with all the usual trimmings of tortillas, salad, beans and other bits and pieces. Needless to say that I was in danger of slipping in to a food coma after that, but I managed to stay awake by writing my blog, before getting a message from Ed to say that he was on his way. Two hours after I’d got there Ed arrived, and after he downed a bottle of cold water and had a short rest, we went in search of a place to sleep.
Now on such a long trip it’s imperative that you have a budget, however we quickly found out that when we’re together, said budget gets completely thrown out of the window. This was perfectly demonstrated by our choice of accommodation in San Ignacio. We knew that we didn’t want to camp, so we rode round the town looking for a cheap hotel. We’d both been fantasising about getting in to a swimming pool, so when we pulled in to the San Ignacio Desert Inn complete with courtyard, swimming pool and a fully stocked bar, the little devils on our shoulders popped up to say hello.
It was $745 pesos though, which is cheap by U.S. standards but very expensive by Mexican standards, and we just couldn’t afford it. Despite haggling the lady wouldn’t budge on the price, so we decided to continue our search for something cheaper. The only other place with a swimming pool was just out of town, so we went to check that one out instead. We managed to get them down to $500 for a double room, which was still out of our budget, and unsure as to what to do we said we needed to think about it and come back. We stood outside and looked at each other, grinning, knowing full well what the other was thinking. If we were going to blow our budget then we may as well do it in style, and with that we jumped on our bikes and rode back to the most expensive hotel in town.
For us it was pure luxury, and as we swam in the pool and sipped on our gin and tonics (that we also couldn’t afford), I have to say that it was totally worth the spending spree.
We planned to leave the following day, and even got as far as packing our stuff up and emptying our room, but as we lounged around the pool and watched the minutes tick by past that point of no return (3pm for us to be precise) we looked at each other, waiting for the other to say those five magic words, ‘Shall we stay another night?!’ And we’re such a bad influence on each other that we did indeed stay another night, in a hotel that we couldn’t afford to stay in for one night, let alone two! But I have to admit, it was totally worth it.