Friday, February 29, 2008

6:30AM - Tummy touch day!
Each morning, Boid has been making tremendous progress getting used to me. As you may see in the pic below, Boid is allowing me to touch his tummy!

Boid is soooooooo brave. He is not afraid of me at all. Wow!

PS: Boid wants you to know that he has a little orange cup inside his cage home with gravel and cuttlebone stuff. Some readers were worried about that!
Touching Boid's tummy.

10AM - Papanoa internet place.
We have found an internet cafe alongside the highway in the little town of Papanoa in the State of Guerrero.

We asked a ton of people where there was an internet place. And, we spent about an hour talking with some guys who gave directions. Everybody we met in Mexico, loves to talk to me about their visits to the USA.
Internet cafe is in the Farmacia.


1:30PM - What's it like in southern Mexico?
We are very close to the famous City of Acapulco. Readers have wondered what Mexico is like down here?

Well, as we drive south along the highway after leaving the City of Zihuatanejo,we have found that it looks a lot like the foothills of Southern California. However there are some things that are really different.

The coconut palm trees with their palm leaf branches waving in the breeze. That, is really different.

Also, it's a lot like the month of June right now, although it is February here. The Sun at noon is almost overhead. And it is T-shirt and short pants weather every day!

The highway here in the State of Guerrero is wonderful. Not pot holed or bumpy as it is in some other states of Mexico.

4PM - The car wash.
We made a deal at a car wash in the City of San Jerónimo, to have Señorita Tioga washed! Is this the first time that Señorita Tioga has had a car wash? Hmmmmmmm?

This wash cost $100 pesos [$10US].
Señorita Tioga at the car wash!


5PM - Nite Camped in San Jerónimo.
We have made our Nite Camp a few blocks away from the car wash in the City of San Jerónimo.

While walking around El Centro, we found a little Internet Cafe! So, we will be able to update our blog this evening. Pretty neat, huh?
Our Nite Camp in the City of San Jerónimo.





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Thursday, February 28, 2008

6:30AM – Heading out of Zihuatanejo.
We are heading southeast out of Zihuatanejo. What a time we had here! Jorge backed into a Ford Explorer! Mr. Datastorm died in Zihuatanejo. Man-O-Man! In the pic below is the $million$ peso view from our Camp above the Bay of Zihuatanejo. We spent two days at this Camp!
Jorge at our Zihuatanejo Camp.



7:30AM – Breakfast Camp.
Boid is getting pretty hungry, and when Boid is hungry he tells me. If he is in his cage as he is now, he looks right at me, tweets very loud and walks back and forth on his perch very fast! So, we stopped and made our Breakfast Camp.

As you may know, Boid has to find his seeds each morning. Today Boid's seeds were on my lap. After Boid found his seeds and ate a bit, we both sat down at the table and ate together.
Jorge and Boid eating breakfast together.

9:30AM - A jungle of coconut palms!
As we drove south, Little Mavicito noticed that the plants were changing. Especially the trees! There are tons of coconut palms growing here. These must be a major crop for the farms here.

Coconut Palms along the highway.

10:30AM – Camped next to Rita's Restaurant.
Señorita Tioga came to a place where the road is very close to the beach. This places is called Playa El Calvario. It is sooooooo beautiful. We drove a couple of hundred yards on a dirt road toward two restaurants on the beach. Rita owns one of these restaurants, and we asked her for permission to stay the nite.
Rita's Restaurant at Playa El Cavalario.


Of course Little Boid wanted to go outside immediately so that he could chirp at the sea birds!

Beach at our Camp at Rita's Restaurant.

2PM - Lunch at Rita's “Esmeralda” Restaurant.

Boid, Little Mavicito and I went over to Rita's for a fish dinner! I ordered quesadillas from the Para Empezar [To Begin] menu. Rita invited me into her kitchen to watch the quesadillas being prepared. I was very impressed that the she prepared fresh masa just for my order!

Rita preparing the masa for my quesadillas.

Boid eyeballing my quesadillas.


Boid really wants my garlic fish!


After lunch, resting on the restaurant's hammock.


6PM – Señorita Tioga at sundown.
It has been a gorgeous day! The sound of the waves pounding in, makes it very easy to sleep, and I've taken several naps. Boid has been free to fly around inside Señorita Tioga and has worn himself out tweeting at the seabirds.

Sundown at Playa El Calvario.




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Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Where does Boid find his food?
Every morning, I ask Boid where are his seeds. This morning, Boid's seeds are hidden in my pajama shirt pocket.

Boid found his seeds, and flew over to my pocket for breakfast. What a smart thing is Boid!
Boid feasting on seeds!

9AM - Camped on the hill again.
We've made our Camp on the same hill as yesterday, overlooking the Bay of Zihuatanejo. On the way here, Little Mavicito captured the pic below!
Zihuatantejo and its bay in the morning.




We are publishing the following from an internet cafe in Zihuatanejo.

6PM - Mr. Datastorm is very sick!
In fact, he may be temporarily dead! My-Oh-My!

As you may know, Mr. Datastorm received a new D3 Controller from Motosat Corporation recently. That D3 never worked. So, we went back to using the older D2 controller. Yesterday, the D2 began to target the wrong elevation, causing us to have to find our satellite manually. Wow!

At the same time that we received the D3 that did not work, we received a new HN7000S modem, so that we would be able to use satellite SatMex6, which was promised to work better than our old SatMex5 satellite.

Strangely, our new HN7000S modem went dead this afternoon. Hmmmmmm? We tried to put back the older modem, and that did not work either. Double Wow!

What to do?
Mr. Datastorm dying like he has way down here in the south of Mexico, leaves us with a decision. What should we do? Wise old Mr. Chips commented, "Well Jorge, it is time to put your money where your mouth is!"

I believe that what Mr. Chips, in his gruff way is saying, is that we will have to continue our journey without onboard internet access. And we have to think positively about this situation. Man-O-Man!

Contacting Motosat for advice.
Of course we are going to contact Motosat Corporation and ask for advice. Perhaps Motosat will have a way of figuring all of this mess out?

Making our daily posts.
We will continue to take pics, and make daily posts just as we have always done. And several times a day too! However, we will not be able to publish those posts as we have done in the past. It will be necessary to find internet cafes along our journey, and publish there.

We will be making our posts in text files which should be pretty easy to convert into Blogger style posts. Little Mavicito will take his pics, we will edit those pics, and put the proper code for the images into the text file. Then when we come to an internet cafe, all we will have to do is copy and paste into Blogger!

Tough on our finances.
As you may imagine, not being able to publish several times each day may be kind of tough on our finances. Our readers like the way we tell them what is going on a bunch of times during the day. And we will greatly miss being able to go online and tell you what's what several times a day too!

But we on the TiogaRV Team are tough! We will come out OK!





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Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Traffic Accident!
I had a traffic accident! Wow! It was my fault. At about 7AM, I was driving to the beach. Ahead I saw an intersection that appeared to be too small for MsTioga. I did NOT turn on my backup camera, and went to back up. Bad mistake!

MsTioga's rear struck the front of a Ford Explorer.


The Transito [Traffic Police], had me follow them to the impound yard where MsTioga must remain until the traffic accident is settled. I must also pay for my infraction of the law that occurred when I backed into this vehicle.

I am at an impound yard right now. Juan Nogueda is the driver of the Ford Explorer, and he is here too. We are waiting for the agent from the insurance company to arrive here.

8AM - The insurance company.
Genworth Seguros is the name of my Mexican insurance company. On the face of my policy is the phone number to call in case of accident. I spoke with Luis, an agent who understood English. He gave me a claim number. He also assured me that an adjuster who is located in the City of Zihuatanejo would meet me in about 30 minutes.

9AM - The insurance adjuster.
Abel Romero is the insurance adjuster. He spoke no English, but we were able to communicate fine in Spanish. Abel prepared the paperwork for the claim and confirmed that Genworth Seguros would pay for all the repairs required for Juan's Ford Explorer.

10:30AM - Breakfast with Juan.
After all of the insurance stuff, I suggested to Juan that we both go to a restaurant, have breakfast and talk about things. I asked Juan several times to let me take his picture for my memories. However, Juan refused. I believe that Juan is shy of having his photo taken.

Juan told me that he began to dive for fish when he was 8 years old, and has been earning his living diving for fish for 26 years. Juan owns his own fishing boat and equipment. He has two children 10 and 8 years old. Juan was bringing his kids to school when the accident happened.

Juan was not able to work today, because of the accident. I told him during breakfast, that I am responsible for his not earning money today. He told me not to worry about that. However, I insisted that I wanted to pay him for the money that he did not earn today. We agreed on $1000 pesos [$100US] for today's lost wages.

12 Noon - Paying the fine.
Striking another vehicle here in Mexico is an infraction. An infraction requires a fine, and my fine is $500 pesos [$50US]. Juan and I drove to the office of La Transito [Traffic Police]. I paid my fine and received a release for Señorita Tioga.

1PM - La Carrociria.
A carrociria is a body shop. Genworth Seguros [my insurance company] uses a particular carroceria here in the City of Zihuatanejo. Juan and I drove over to that carroceria.

One of the owners of the body shop is a friend of Juan's. This friend suggested to Juan that if they could repair a little of the damage today, that the hood of the car could be opened in case maintenance had to be done to the engine [ie; adding water to radiator or oil to the engine].

I agreed to pay $50US out of pocket to have this work done this afternoon.

2PM - Interesting experience!
It is all over now. Señorita Tioga and The Team have asked permission to remain in the impound yard of Zihuatanjeo for a little while in order to tell you all about today's accident experience.

Everything really worked out well. The Transit Police were very polite and helpful. There was no stress. No anxiety. Everybody who dealt with me was polite and efficient.

At the end of everything, I asked Juan if he was OK with our arrangements. Juan said that he was OK. And I told Juan, "If you are OK, then I am OK."

Little Boid wants you to know that he was also OK spending his day inside the impound yard!
Señorita Tioga in the Zihuatanejo impound yard.

3PM - Camped above the bay.
As we were leaving the Transito impound yard, one of the men gave us directions to the beach. However, when we reached the beach we found that Señorita Tioga is just a bit big to find a parking spot anywhere. So, we went up the hill looking for our Camp!

On the way up the hill, we came to a gorgeous view of one of the bays. Little Mavicito went outside and captured this pano! Wow!
View of a bay of Zihuatanejo.

Señorita Tioga kept going up the hill, higher and higher. We came to a nice concrete hillside road, that had no homes at all. Not even one!

So, we made our Camp here.
View from our Zihuatanejo hillside Camp. A $zillion$ peso view!


Jorge, how do you do it?
Several readers sent email after my blog's accident report. They wanted to know how I don't get all screwed up when things like this accident happen.

I will confess that at first I was very disappointed with myself. Then I remembered that this is just an accident. Nothing really serious.

Also, I have the advantage of having the cancer perspective!

Stuff like accidents, Datastorm not working [Datastorm gave me problems this afternoon], Señorita Tioga's breakdowns. All of this kind of thing is nothing compared to chemotherapy and cancer.

Going to chemo and sitting for hours as huge viles of red icky looking stuff is dripped into me. Having my muscles get smaller and smaller, until I do not have the strength to get out of my chair. Not being able to eat hardly anything. Not even drink water without gagging. Having my hair fall out. Not being able to breathe right. Watching my cancer support group members die, and going to their funerals.

All of these cancer things are real problems. A thing like today's accident? Wow! No problem at all.

7PM - Nite Camp.
Our Nite Camp is in the same residential neighborhood as yesterday. We wanted to make our Camp close to the Municipal Market. All of those shops are very exciting and it would be nice to walk around there this evening. However, parking near the mercado is very tight!




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Monday, February 25, 2008

5th Anniversary Tioga and George!

February 25, 2003
On this date in 2003, my doctor told me that my cancer was in remission. Right after leaving my doctor's office, I zoomed to the City of Manteca to pickup MsTioga.

From that day on, I never lived in my stick home again!
Tioga and George - April, 2003

Descending into Summertime!
Two days ago in Patzcuaro, we made our Camp at 7,000+ feet. Yesterday in Uruapan, our Camp was around 3,000 feet elevation.

When we headed south out of Uruapan this morning, there were no good street signs to be seen. So, we followed the our compass and headed south. Around mid-morning, we thought that we were heading to the City of Apatzingan, but we were wrong. We are now in the City of Gabriel Zamora, east of Apatzingan.

The elevation in Gabriel Zamora is about 2,000 feet. And it is warm here at mid-morning. 85°F warm. We have descended the latitudes and elevation into Summertime!


Ignorant of weather.

My first trip to the State of Montana with MsTioga surprised me. There were rain storms in Montana during the summer. It just never clicked in my brain until I actually experienced Montana in the summer, that it rains in that state all year long.

California boys like myself, don't know about rain in the summertime!

T-shirt and short pants weather!
Now that Señorita Tioga and I are experienced, we know that it is possible to live in T-shirt and short pants weather all year long.
Tioga and George in the middle of a Mexico February summer.

1pm to 6PM - Toll road to Zihuatanejo.
As we drove along the toll road, everybody on The Team had their eyes out looking for a place to make our Nite Camp. Toll roads pretty much bypass most of the towns, so we kept going toward the mysterious sounding Zihuatanejo!

We past thru three toll plazas, and paid $250 pesos [$25US] for all of the tolls. After one toll plaza, we found a parking area and a family there selling cold papaya juice. It was good!
The papaya juice came in plastic bag with a straw!

6PM - Pacific Ocean?
Little Mavicito was jumping around like a mad thing as we came close to seeing the Pacific Ocean. However, we were soooooooo surprised to find that the Pacific Ocean never showed. The Pacific must be over the rise of hills to the south.

We all expected to find Zihuatanejo looking like the final scene in "The Shawshank Redemption" where Tim Robbins is working on his beached boat as Morgan Freeman walks down the beach to meet him.
First look at Zihuatanejo! Wow!

7PM - Nite Camped.
We have made a Nite Camp in a residential section of Zihuatanejo. We are able to tell you that so far, this town looks like a zillion other large towns. Tons of traffic and narrow streets!

Tomorrow we will explore to see what's what!

8AM - Doña Aure Restaurant.
While I was scouting for our Nite Camp, there was a little restaurant that got my attention located just around the corner. So, I decided to go there for supper.

I began to talk to a fellow who was eating next to me. Soon a lady sat down across from me. This lady asked if I would be her agent in the United States because she wanted to work there! Can you imagine that?

It turned out that this lady owned this restaurant. But she had a fantasy idea of life in the United States. Her name is Aurelia and her husband is Salvadore. The three of us had a long talk about what life is like in the USA compared to Mexico.
Aurelia who owns Doña Aure Restaurant.


Salvadore, Aurelia's husband and partner.



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