Week 55 – ‘prepping week’
Our time to crossing the border was quickly approaching, so it was time to get some final Milton admin done (& of course read into that, ‘more buying stuff we probably don’t need on Amazon’). First off was the get the brakes done – tick. Grouting any various holes/gaps – tick. Replacing the sink strainer – tick. (thanks to Lou for basically doing that task). And buying a new car stereo – tick. (fed up of either silence or Taylor Swift followed by Adele combo on every station, and wanted something with Bluetooth that we could play our own music/audio tapes as opposed to too much local Mariachi music).
We also did some cheeky truck camper viewings. It had always been discussed that we’d have Baja as our Milton test track, so to speak. To see whether he was too big, to cumbersome, the state of Mexican roads, etc. We still keep going backwards & forwards on whether to trade him down for either a truck + truck camper (i.e. a more rugged base vehicle, and overall a little smaller) or convert a Sprinter type van (more stealthy, better fuel economy….AND something for me to build a little more to our own personal preferences). We saw a couple that we liked, but there’s obvious any additional expense, and just as importantly additional time (to buy, refit, and so on) that we need to take into consideration. Plus, we both seem to be constantly changing our preferred option, so who knows.
But, we did finally make it into Mexico this week.
We camped up near the tiny border town of Los Algodones. We’d originally planned to cross at Mexicali, but as we were camped up literally at that border crossing, and a guy at the camp said it was a doddle to cross over, we just thought why not. Interestingly it has the world’s densest concentration of doctors, dentists & pharmacies (or something like that). Apparently all the old Americans & Canadians cross over for a day trip & simply stock up on pills/dentures/implants that they can’t get or is expensive in the US. Bizarre to see all these people park up their cars, walk across the border, and just go wild in the aisles of the Mexican equivalent of CVS.
Anyway, we crossed over without too much fuss. Got our 6 months worth of visa, and headed South to San Felipe. A little place on the coast that we planned to chill for a few days & acclimatise. We lasted 1 night. It was fine, but just a little cramped, so we carried on South the next day to Puertecitos (via some large cactus) & bathed in some hot springs.
After that it was Gonzaga Bay (peaceful but windy!) via 30 miles of unpaved roads. That was not fun, and something that we need to avoid as Milton will definitely not survive roads like that (15 mph was the max we could do). And then ended up the week in Bahia de Los Angeles. Not really worth the hour’s drive off the main highway if truth be told, but hey, when in Rome.
Overall, quite a busy week, and after 12 months we are now what I would class as “properly on the road”.
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