Chapter 2: The opening Act.
We were all set, Ankit and me, to make this happen. This was our second attempt. The plan was quite simple. It was meant to be executed in three days. We ride motorcycles. Starting in San Deigo, we go south into Mexico – crossing Tijuana, Ensenada, San Quintin, El Rosario, Catavina we reach Chapala. From there a dirt road going north east takes us along the Sea of Cortez to San Felipe via Puertecitos. Going further north we cross back into US via Mexicali and back to San Diego. In all this would amount to over seven hundred miles, including the fifty miles of dirt road riding from Chapala to Puertecitos. Our first attempt in March of 2009, saw loss of some documents of our friend Anshu, leading to a premature return to San Diego from Ensenada. We however completed a San Diego-San Felipe trip via Mexicali, starting again the next day. This time, we were to complete it as planned. Or so we thought.
Mexico, is about 25 miles from our home. Having had the experience of going to Ensenanda a handful of times, Mexico does not scare us anymore. We somehow forget that it is a different country. We forget, that rules are different, the people, the culture, the currency, the language is different. These differences become insignificant. It becomes a routine to go to Mexico.
Walking back to our offices, late Thursday morning, after confirming from the International Center at UCSD that it is safe to go to Mexico and come back even if our American visas expire in a week, Ankit asked, “How much money should we take”. “Ummmm… a hundred fifty dollars each? or may be a hundred”, I replied. Ankit concurred. Two hundred dollars looked sufficient to us for a three day trip to Mexico.
“So when are we leaving?”
“Well we can actually go to Ensenada tonight, spend a night there and start tomorrow morning for Catavina. This will help us cover a 100 miles, and let us have a comfortable start tomorrow morning”.
“Ya, for sure, so what time should we leave tonight?”
“How about around eight, we need to book a hotel in Ensenada.”
“We also need to buy insurance for our motorcycles.”
“Ok so can you go to the bank and get some Pesos, I will look for hotels in Ensenada and buy the insurance. Come to my place at around six or seven all packed”.
“Sounds good, laterz.”
Having done a handful of motorcycle trips packing does not seem a big task. For our motorcycles, some tools and a flat tire repair kit. For ourselves, our documents, a couple of set of clothes, jackets, toothbrush, towel, some medicines, cream for keeping our skins soft, some other basic necessities and we are set. A twenty minute job. Ankit came to my place at around six thirty as planned. He had two thousand three hundred Pesos on him that we split equally (one dollar equaled about twelve Pesos). To bid us good bye Himanshu and Kumar, laden with the same streak of adventure, stopped by. A ceremonial picture and we were all set. At around eight in the evening we were riding full speed on I-5 going south towards the Mexican border. A pit stop at a gas station to fill our tanks and double check our documents, and we were in Mexico in no time.