An update from Guanajuato

Just a quick update from our room in the incredible World Heritage city of Guanajuato. Keeping up the blog with words and pictures has been pretty impossible as we’ve really been deep in rural Mexico without much access to internet or phone. We’ve been more or less back in civilisation, if you will, since yesterday evening, and the rest of our trip won’t be nearly as wild and way out there. Our motorcycle trip has taken us by surprise at every corner. I never expected the scenery to be as varied and as extraordinarily beautiful as what we’ve seen over the last five days. I never thought we would come across (usually through getting lost) such weather-worn, massively messed up roads, and that the long hours of riding would be so challenging and tiring for Ben...

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Hola from Xilitla

Just a quick update. We’re two nights into our motorcycle journey. We made it to Xilitla in the state of San Luis Potosi in the pouring rain. Ended up randomly staying at a cabin in some hippie campground/commune down a crazy, crazily beautiful rock/gravel road. We were greeted by a bunch of Mexican hippies hanging out in a hut drinking tea and doing macrame. It’s pretty wacky.
Ben is asleep next to me. Better get some rest. Buenas noches.

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Mexico City

I arrived in Mexico City feeling excited and positive about the city. I had come to believe the city’s scary reputation no longer held true – the Distrito Federale (‘DF’ for short) has managed to clean up its act over the last decade or so to an impressive degree, clamping down on a lot of the street crime that once made the metropolis a dicey destination for visitors and locals alike. But to outsiders, its crime infested image still persists, and Ben still had dire warnings of robbery and kidnapping swirling through his head when we touched down at the airport, having so far only spent time in relaxed, unintimidating Baja California.

Well, in four nights in the city, we walked the streets day and night, rode the metro everywhere, hailed cabs off the street at all hours, and foll...

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Diving the Socorro Islands and the Sea of Cortez – an unfinished mission

Written on July 1st, 2014, aboard the Nautilus Explorer:

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Our time aboard the Nautilus Explorer is coming to a close. Our 12 night trip has been one of mixed fortunes. The parents have already been informed, so we didn’t break the news of Ben’s ‘dive related injury’ via this blog. Yes, Ben got bent (we’ll explain the situation in detail to anyone interested). Unsurprisingly, the initial shock and anxiety of realising he was definitely, undoubtedly, inescapably bent, hundreds of kilometres from civilisation, compounded the symptoms of decompression illness and made the situation appear much worse than it actually was. In the end, it was determined that Ben only had ‘skin bends’ – nitrogen bubbles trapped under the skin causing a rash, swelling and bruising...

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La Paz, Baja California

El malecon is the seaside promenade that spans almost the entire coastline of La Paz, a city of 250,000 on the west coast of Baja California Sur.

We arrive in La Paz after a delayed flight, missed buses and a three hour drive through a cactus strewn desert, grabbing glimpses of the Pacific coast, and the man-made oases in the Los Cabos tourist corridor, home to numerous overblown resorts and environmentally questionable golf courses. By the time we get to the city it’s well after dark. The streets are poorly lit and nothing about the residential part of town we’re staying in seems remarkable. We figure we could be just about anywhere in the world. Then a car cruises past us with the stereo blaring. The sound of accordions and trumpets fills the air. Nope, we’re definitely in Mexico.

We’r...

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¡hola mundo!

We’re at it again!

Follow us from the gritty ethnic gangland of Glendale, California to La Paz, the capital of Baja California Sur, between the desert and the Sea of Cortez. Next, we board the liveaboard ship the Nautilus Explorer and set sail for Mexico’s most distant offshore territories, the Revillagigedo Islands, some 400km from the southern tip of Baja. After 11 days of diving, shark chasing and seasickness, we head for the mainland and Mexico City for a determined stint of extreme urban hiking and taco eating. Then, we have nine days to get a BMW GS650 motorcycle from the capital to Guadalajara via Mexico’s Central Highlands and the fabled Tequila region.

Somebody tell los carteles to watch out, el Bendo and la Fina are coming!

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