Land travels! Happy Dance is dancing solo for a bit while we travel on wheels and wings. We’ve been to a couple of new places in Mexico and now we’re North of the border with plenty of visits and adventures to be enjoyed. So here is a recap of our latest escapades on terra firma.
Sayulita and La Cruz
One of our favorite nights in La Cruz was when we went to a local benefit show, which consisted of dinner followed by a local Mexican dance group and then music by a band called Luna Rumba. The dancing was beautiful, put on by a group of local kids who danced their hearts out. When Luna Rumba took the stage our jaws dropped with the first few notes. Three guys, two on acoustic guitars that they could make sound like a full string band, and a percussions guy on bongos and other drums. Amazing doesn’t cover it, as the music, and the performance was staggeringly beautiful.
We spent a fun day with our cruising friends Gail and Dave, wandering around Sayulita, a little town on the Pacific Coast near La Cruz. To get there we took a bus into Bucerias, then ran across the highway to catch another bus to Sayulita. It’s a ride through the bush to get back over to the ocean from where we are in Banderas Bay. Sayulita is a cute surfing town on a beautiful spot on the ocean, but it’s fairly touristy, with lots of shops, vendors, and restaurants. The bus ride home was probably the funniest part of the day. As the bus filled up with vendors carrying their wares, and babies screaming, I said to Marty “all we need now is a goat”. About that time a guy walked on with a rooster flapping wildly in his hands. We listened to cock a doodle do all the way home!
One of the adventures we’d been looking forward to while in La Cruz was a trip up into the mountains to visit a historic mining town. We joined a trip that is organized by Philo’s, one of our favorite watering holes in La Cruz. We boarded the bus with 45 of our closest friends and headed up the mountain, stopping at a small tequila distillery on the way, then on to San Sebastian where the bus dropped us off about a quarter-mile from the actual town since the bus couldn’t fit down the road.
Once there we explored town all afternoon, climbing up and down narrow cobblestone streets that meandered through 400 year old buildings. It was all very scenic and quiet, and cool! The temperature was perfect; lots of sun but about 20 degrees cooler than down in the marina. We enjoyed a sangria in the town square, while sitting at a table that was so slanted we had to hold onto everything to keep it from sliding off the table – kind of like being in Happy Dance!
Dinner was an all you can eat rib dinner with live music in the central plaza of the old fort, provided by Philo and his band. The music was great, the food was excellent and we met lots of new friends to yak with. After dark the amplifiers were turned off, the camp fire was lit, and the acoustic guitars came out; fun to listen to music around a fire under the stars within a 400 year old fort.
Dallas and Pahrump.
We flew from Puerto Vallarta to Dallas to start our land tour where we’ll be traveling to four states to visit lots of friends and family. Our first visit was with Grumpy (Marty’s Dad) and DeLain up in Collinsville, followed by dinner with Michael and Stan the Man; Stan was el jefe from my work life! Both were great visits and a great way to start off our U.S. tour!
From Dallas we flew to Vegas, rented a car and drove to Pahrump for a mini family reunion with Bob, Meg, and Kyle! While there we happened onto a local balloon festival where we watched about 20 balloons getting set to take flight in the cool morning air. Marty even helped keep one on the ground while the crew got set to go. We also got to go for an e-ticket ride with my brother Bob on his club driving track! Bob is having great fun as he puts the pedal to the metal around very tough and constantly changing driving tracks. He took each one of us for a ride and WOW! I’m a little embarassed to admit that I had to pry my hand off the door handle to get out, but Marty, Kyle and Meg were all much braver and hopped out of the car with huge grins after their rides. The speeds are deceiving, because as we watched from the tower the car looked to be going almost slow, until you noticed the cant of the car on the corners and heard the tires squeal. And when you’re in the car, the g-forces on the corners and watching how much physical strength and mental concentration is required by Bob to handle the course is very impressive!
Now we are in Vegas, chillaxin’ a bit before the big baseball draft! Marty’s fantasy baseball draft happens Saturday, so we have some days to play and explore (and watch Marty gather data, one can never have enough data). Tonight we’ll go see the show, Jersey Boys, and I’m sure we’ll find some other things to do while here; it’s Vegas after all!
So there you have it – our latest land adventures. We’ll be on terra firma for another three weeks or so, with our next stop being SoCal to see the family down that way. From there we head to Seattle, Coupeville, and then back to Happy Dance! It’s kind of wild to be back in the States, and I was trying to think what I had missed the most. Hot french fries, gooey pizza, clean bathrooms, grocery labels I can read, and most importantly, friends and family!