10 November 2006 - San Carlos, Mexico
Thanks to my brother Todd and DHL, my original registration showed up yesterday at 2pm. Doug and I picked it up at the DHL office in Guaymas and hit the road south. We figured a few hours on the road would at least get us a little futher south, and hopefully through the checkpoint where we need the darn thing.
About 45 minutes later we arrived at said checkpoint, to learn they don't issue the vehicle permit that we need. Whaaaaat? They turned us back. They said we could check in Guaymas at a certain bank, but probably we'd have to go back to the border town of Nogales. We couldn't believe it. We headed back into town, and went to the bank, which closes at 3pm. We arrived a half hour late, but still rounded up the bank manager, who promptly sent us down the street to see some other guys in uniforms. We talked to several levels of people in their office, and found out we have to go back to Nogales to get the right permit for the bikes. So, we headed back to San Carlos to camp for the night. Pretty dismayed and in disbelief, but maintaining a pretty good attitude about it all. Seems to be a pretty messed up place, but so it goes in Mexico.
Today we were on the road at 5am and made the round trip ride to the border and back, about 500 miles, in about 8 hours. We were clocking some pretty good speeds. We expected for everything to take a while at the border, but to our good fortune it was training day at the place where we get the permits. There were 6 Mexican girls manning two permit windows. Doug and I both noticed they were all smiles and giggles when we showed up in line, and they kept staring at us. We got to one of the windows and presented all our documents, and the Penelope Cruz look alike asked where we were headed. I said Guatemala. They gave us the permit to travel throughout Mexico for 3 months. She then asked how far south we were going... I promptly responded to Argentina and Chile, do you want to come along? She smiled laughed and said, sure but the problem is we all want to come along. Fortunately we made it back to San Carlos in good order and with no Mexican chicas in tow, in time for our last sunset here on the beach.
In the morning we will FINALLY be headed south again, and will put in a long day and try to reach Mazatlan.
Let out the clutch, open the throttle, and let it fly!