last day on the pacific...for now
It takes us a bit longer to leave town in the morning than we might hope because we have to find a way to fit two large paintings in the bus, not exactly in the original design schematics. We also keep having interesting couples come by, one talking about their European and South American trip years ago before settling in Nelson, BC and another who is dreaming of a trip of their own...conversations we cant possibly cut short! Finally underway we make the all too familiar drive to Vallarta and stop into the window place hoping our window is in. We were supposed to wait 4 days for a confirmation email, but never received any communication- making us really excited to hear that it was ready. Spent the hours waiting for the seal to dry wiring in a new spotlight for our bbq. Love finishing a project in the same time another is being done! Window in place we head towards the heart of town checking once again for the missing part for our handbrake. Both shops in town rummage through their stock but don’t have the part we need. We take a look at the closest option (which isn’t really close at all but one end matches the end we need), and convince them to cut the end off the new one and weld onto whats remaining of ours. Yet another reason to love mexico...it might be harder to find what you’re looking for, but theres a good chance you’ll find someone willing to make it work (for good or for bad). 45 minutes of welding, grinding and installing later and we are on the road feeling a lot better about our odds of parking in steep guanajuato without rolling down a hill.
As we head north out of Vallarta we realize that (as always on errand day) time has burnt more quickly than we anticipated and we wont be making it out of the bay today. The sun is going down and we adhere to the never drive at night rule. We race the encroaching sunset, to get out of town and back as far north as La Cruz, where we hit the artisan market a few weeks earlier. We pull in front of the town church and walk through town chatting with locals and grabbing a few tacos before retiring for our first night in the bus for over 7weeks. It will take some readjusting and getting used to once again, but it definitely feels like home sweet home.
In the morning we fulfill the first need...coffee, and then head north with intentions of a final pacific coast breakfast just north of sayulita, in San Pancho, staring at the ocean. On the way there, we pass by La Tranquilla, a giant elaborate new resort still under construction that just so happens to be where my supposed art “benefactor” manages. I’ve spent the last few days deliberating what to do with my paintings, considering options from burning them in the street to gifting them to friends we’ve met, and even contacted the local gallery owner but couldn’t mesh schedules before leaving. No option seemed to work and we decided to simply take them with us until we figured out what to do. Not perfect in a space already devoid of space.
In a wave of newfound (caffeine-induced) confidence as we drive by his resort, I decide we are going to pull in and ask to chat with him to try and get the remainder of the money and dropoff the painting. We make a sharp left, explain to the guards we “have business with the boss-man” and walk into the beautiful lobby. Of course, he isn’t here and is actually in route to the states for a few days. We find his personal assistant who tells us he will return in 2 days. But instead of waiting around, we arrange to leave the painting with her to prevent damage during our trip and in hopes that he will deposit the remainder in our account upon his return. This chapter hasn’t yet been closed, but we are optimistic of resolution and a positive outcome in the coming days. At least we were proactive rather than sitting around waiting on an outcome and at the very least we gained back a bit of our sleeping space in the bus. A bit lighter in load (and of mind), we make the beautiful drive back north to San Pancho.
This is the one small town in the area that we never felt like we got our fill of and kept us wanting more. It didn’t disappoint this morning either. We first walk to the beach to bid farewell to lake pacifico...who as luck would have it seems to have a building swell over the past few days. Then, as we wandered the streets and settled into what looked like the best place for a plate of chilaquiles we talked with local after local who told us their story of landing in San Pancho and how much they love their slower paced, relaxed town. We agree completely, but after a nice stroll and stopping into a new screen printing shop that fed my new love for everything revolución (and printing) we were on our way. Better to leave town quickly than to get stuck and never make it out. The offers for drinks and conversation will have to await our return!