What can we say but day one in Mexico was hilarious. We drive up to the entry point to the Mexican customs and all the border guards just watch us drive through, not one of them indicates where we are supposed to park so we keep driving looking for a sign that never appeared. We cannot proceed without our tourist permit, vehicle permit and having our passports stamped. Realizing we are in the town of Nogales already, we need to make our way back to the entry point but we’re lost. After speaking with a few locals we get a personal escort back to the border by the municipal police, with all their lights flashing and leading us down the wrong side of the road to the border entry building where the police found an English speaking gentleman who acted as interpreter. Once we have our passports stamped and purchase our tourist permits we are told to drive 21 km to purchase a vehicle permit for the motorbike. Fortunately there were a couple of newspaper vendors who pointed us to the correct exit and we were on our way. We had heard stories that the purchasing of permits would take ½ a day to complete, well, that was totally incorrect and we were on the road again within an hour. During that hour we passed the time visiting with other BC residents who were also applying for permits.
following this down the highway is one of a motorcyclists worst fears
There are so many unfamiliar things happening around us that at times you go into sensory overload. Diana had the “deer in the headlights” feeling when she had to carry on a conversation in Spanish yesterday but has since improved her conversational skills and we even had the correct meals ordered.
Federale Police are everywhere, truck stops, toll booths and just wherever they plan to check vehicles for illegal activity. Most of the Federales vehicles are ¾ or 1 ton pickups with racks on the sides and back where they stand while driving down the highway, of course each of them is fully armed with machine guns and side arms.
Most times when you approach a town the locals will put out delineator posts on the highway and slow traffic which allows them to sell fruit, tortilla’s, etc. without anyone ever leaving their vehicle.
We spent Friday night in Guaymas which is a beachside town and dined on authentic Mexican cuisine with awesome service. To this point we have found the people very friendly and willing to help. Most we converse with want to know where we are from, where we are going and when told they are astounded we are traveling such a long distance. Some even comment we are LOCO (crazy) and we all laugh together.