Paredon, Guatemala

sadly, the boards remain dusty and strapped to the roof of the bus. I woke up with a bit of a restless tummy, but jen didn’t mind giving the toe another day to heal and the waves looked like mush anyway, so we missed the morning session...  Turned out the tummy wasn’t the only thing afternoon i was achy and tired and had developed a full on fever.  We’ve read from our friends on the road ahead of us how miserable the guatemala flu is- so i’m hoping that this is just something i picked up before leaving mexico.

Not sure what it was, but 24 hours later i seem to be back to normal.  Either it was a quick flu-bug or i have malaria and will be blogging about that in the coming months as symptoms reappear...  stay tuned.teabry sickjen guitar

paredon sunsetWoke up feeling remarkably better this morning, so i spent a bit of time under the bus tightening up those pesky transaxle mount bolts (again).  This was much needed after the 12km bumpy sand road to the surf house.  I realized today that our problem isn’t that the bolts keep loosening up, but that they are working their way through the steel of the mount.  Sadly, I only discovered this when, after a few cranks of the socket wrench i heard a loud snap and thought the bolt had popped in two.  One of the two bolt heads had actually worked its way through the mount and snapped through to the other side.  Not the sound i wanted to hear out here in the middle of nowhere...

To make matters worse, our limited spares kit doesn’t have any washers that will fit (nor did the surf house).  After digging through the tool drawers and pulling out everything i though might be close i spent the next half an hour under the bus trying to rig up a solution.  This was round peg square hole type of stuff, except it was really round bolt meets door hinge and spare housekey.  I eventually found a small wrench that’s meant to change the heads on our rivet gun and turned it into a makeshift washer.  That's right, we are a 12km down a rough and bumpy sand road from any type of civilization and our transmission is being held to the engine by a bolt hanging on by a tiny wrench.  What’s  really odd about the whole situation is...that i feel really good about it.  We’ll see how well this roadside fix works at the other end of the road and after a few more tumulos.wrenched

wrenched2The good news is that we quite enjoyed our stay at the paredon surf house (except for that being sick the whole time bit). The bad news is that we didn’t get any waves during our first official stay at a surf house/camp.  We also just found out now (in our last day) that they had these really nice, peaceful zen-like bathrooms and showers that everyone else used throughout their stay while jen and i used what is apparently the help/overflow banos.  Honestly, our expectations for bathrooms has become quite low...but two days of tiny stalls made of wind-flapping canvas walls while our new friends enjoy an open air shower amongst the bamboo while palapa and palm shadows dance along the wall...just rude.   I guess we’ll be exploring the grounds a bit better at out next stop...but we took a few showers today just to make up for lost time.

This was a funny stop for us.  We spent most of our time trying to coordinate with our dear friend back home for her upcoming visit (with an almost nonexistant internet connection).  The discussions made it really clear just how quickly we will be going through central america.  Not because we are rushing, but simply because the countries are more the size of states and even with a few days at each stop we want to make, it simply isn’t a long trip south.  That would also mean the “end” of at least what we first set out with as our goal is only weeks away...which clearly stirs up all kinds of “what's next” thoughts.showerparedon surf houseparedon surf house common areaparedon pool

The surf house was an interesting place to have those conversations as it is the closest place we’ve been during the drive to what we might have pictured building ourselves (if we ever stumbled upon the perfect deserted beach to do so).  A small/rustic yet modern set of palapas/cabanas looking over the ocean with a shared space for guests to gather, tell their travel stories and enjoy the days in between waves.  It’s the kind of place we think it would be fun to design, build and would be really enjoyable to live for a few years running the operation and being a part of those conversations around the communal dinner table.  It’s also, we realize now- very remote.  Very far from friends and family and frankly a long haul to any kind of store, meaning you spend a large portion of your time driving back and forth collecting supplies.

This type of project may still be in our future and there are still parts that excite us about the potential, but it seems less a realistic dream than before.  Now if only i could truly answer to myself whether that’s because i don’t want it, or because we know we cant afford the perfect stretch of beach to make it happen...  Oh good, something to think about during the drive while i attempt to not picture the wrench/washer wiggling loose as we jitter across the washboard terrain.parkingspare boardsOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA