Tuesday, June 30, 2009

The road to Mazatlan

I just got back from Mazatlan... Earl, an old friend, offered to drive me down to retrieve the white bus with his big Dodge diesel pickup. The bus was languishing on the street outside Nancy & Paul's beautiful old towne home.

The Belmar shows its age and charm
We were looking for a room and Paul recommended the Belmar Hotel on the malecon... it was a wonderful old six story hotel with swimming pool, wifi, cable tv and really good, firm beds and indoor parking. Earl and I got a room with two doubles for $260 pesos... just under $20 US.

The Belmar Hotel... the archway is the real entrance

I've come to learn that the Belmar is the oldest, large tourist hotel in Mazatlan and it looks it... But that's its charm. That night we strolled four blocks down to Plaza Machado, and listened to jazz while Earl tried a plate of the local fish. I had a limonada. The square was filled with excited people and it was all lit up and pretty.

We had a great night of sleep and in the morning we found dozens of people running around in the lobby, putting together a bunch of portable lights, etc. They were shooting a movie in the hotel. The parking lot was filled with shiny aluminum trucks, as well as the side streets. We slipped out and tried to head down the malecon to pick up the street that Nancy and Paul live on, but the police had it blocked off. We drove for an hour, trying to pick our way through this warren of tiny little one way streets and kept ending up in at the same place.

Eventually, we caught a road that bypassed most of the chaos, found a really good coffee shop and the street we wanted. After hooking up the white bus on the towbar, we drove out of old town and eventually picked up the main highway, where it turns out, they were double charging me for the white bus and Earl's truck at all the toll booths.

It was a great 1,000 mile round trip in two days. Earl has some great stories, and with Earl driving, I finally got to see what was on the road to Mazatlan.


Chrissy y Keith said...

Sounds like a fun adventure. We will be in Gauymas and SC this weekend. We used to have a Westy, I think it was newer than yours and Bliss's. Our was a 1985 I think, maybe 86. We had good luck with ours, I understand you have had some challanges with yours.

MxSailor said...

Challenges is right! Ours is a 1986... but we also have a 1971 window van we're "repairing, not restoring" and it runs great. The '86... we'll see what happens. Where will you guys be staying?