Changing my profession to vagabond

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by NoHorizons, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. td63

    td63 Been here awhile Supporter

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    Completely lost sight of this thread way back in December. Glad it's back on my radar: great pics, thoughtful and interesting perspectives, and one hell of an adventure. Good luck and keep it coming!
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  2. Jim-Mer

    Jim-Mer Slowing Down

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    NoHorizons, reading your trip report / musings / reflections and observations about the life You’ve lived and experienced so far encourages me that your generation is more grounded and open about what can be than I previously thought. I’m on the other side now, having lived my life, pursued my career, and now on the downhill run through retirement. I wish when I was young I had taken a chance to better understand what was around me before charging forward, much like you are doing. Enjoy your time being a vagabond, embrace the unknown that is around the corner, and be open to all possibilities. Best of luck on your adventure, I’m enjoying your writing and photography, and wishing I’d had the courage to do what you are doing at your age.

    Jim
    Canton, OH
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  3. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    I wasn't sure whether to start a new thread or continue this one in the end I decided that this was really much of the same trip, just inconvenienced by a year of work.

    I am finally back on the road!

    I spent Dec. through Jan. back in NY and DC visiting the family and working trying to make a few extra bucks before I started traveling.

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    Some Chicken Dumpling Soup I spent an extra week photography a new menu
    I had left the KLR at a shop to figure out why the spark was having issues figuring that two months was enough, it wasn’t, it wasn’t even the part they thought it was so, I had an extra week in FL to go to the beach, do computer work and drink.

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    At least I had the beach to myself
    I was finally back on the road! and it felt good, just good… I couldn’t quite figure out why, it felt like I was running away from things instead of toward them, like I had misplaced my wanderlust.

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    Louissiana is flat and swampy with occasional farmland.
    I stopped in New Orleans for two days and really enjoyed it but, wasn’t really in a mood to take photos so I left the camera at the hostel. It also rained a lot, so much that the cafe I was working in started flooding.

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    Not sure if sweeping water into a trash can is the most effective option…
    I still couldn’t shake my melancholy, maybe it was the flat landscape or more likely the fact that I was heading to a completely unknown place where I don’t speak the language on a motorcycle I don’t completely trust was getting to my subconscious. I don’t know. Whatever the case I am to stubborn to let such things affect me… much.

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    Something about these bridges that I don’t like I always feel like I’m going to be blown off.
    The next day it had cleared up even if it was a bit windy and chilly. By evening I had found an abandoned gas station to make camp in.
  4. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    Not a bad place to camp, at least until the mosquitoes came out.

    I finally got to Austin Tx. where I spent a couple days staying with friends, hiding from the rain and rewiring my all my electrical add-ons.

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    Texas hill country was a welcome change in pace!

    As I dropped south through Texas Hill Country the blue feeling I’d been fighting for the last week lessened its grip and I started feeling a bit better. I think it was the landscape.
  5. SOLOKLR

    SOLOKLR Back to work

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    Go for it! The old KLR should keep going.
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  6. roadcapDen

    roadcapDen Ass, Grass or Gas, no free rides.

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    Alright, where too?
  7. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    You and I are both going to have to wait for that answer.
    I am currently in Durango Mx.
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  8. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    The landscape fattened out again as I pushed for the border, a day and a half later I made it to Eagle Pass and decided to stay the night, it was already mid afternoon and I still had to figure out insurance for the bike. I found myself in what is without doubt the most run down motel I have ever seen but, it was $30. I got some insurance from a local shop and wandered about town for a while. I’m pretty sure that the sheets had dried blood on them I stripped them off and slept in my sleeping bag.

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    Ok run down may be an understatement

    The next day the border crossing went so smoothly I wasn’t completely convinced I was in Mexico, the only hitch came when I got to Allende to do my paper work and realized I had lost my wallet… I panicked for a good five minuets and almost turned around before finding it in the wrong pocket. Oops. Its like I’m allergic to easy and have to make my own problems when there aren’t any.

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    I forget how boring the architecture is in the US until I leave it.

    I made my way down Route 57 stayed the night in Sabinas and over the next week I slowly made my way south and then west to Durango.

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    The road seemed to go on forever, flat straight, and surrounded by mountains that were just out of reach.

    I was quickly realizing my Spanish is even worse than I thought it was (which wasn’t very good to begin with). Even when by some stroke of luck I understand what someone is saying responding is even more difficult. It seems that more often than not it would come in another language usually German (which I actually do speak) but sometimes, in a language I definitely don’t speak. I was trying to say “no” but my brain was like that’s not foreign enough why don’t you say “nyet” the man trying to sell me bread looks like he speaks Russian…. seriously, why?!

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    Finally Mountains! close enough I could reach out and touch them.

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    I can’t wait to lean into some beautiful curvy Mexican roads I’ve heard so much about.

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    But no, these mountains are just for looking. What a tease.
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  9. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    The weather was getting hotter and I noticed the bike was running a little warmer than usual, I chalked it up to the weather and kept going. I spent the night in a pretty little town on the high planes.

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    Cuencamé town square

    The next morning a checked the fan to see if it was the issue it wasn’t. right before leaving I noticed a bit of coolant on my skid plate but, couldn’t find a leak. I topped off the radiator with some water and it ran fine all the way to Durango.

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    The landscape was much the same, maybe a bit less grass and a bit more brush.

    When I got to Durango I found a decent hostel and decided it my be worthwhile to have a mechanic check out the coolant issues, they weren’t all that helpful, with the generous help of the online community at advrider.com I was able to diagnose what the actual issue is; the water pump seals. Now I just have to figure out where / how to get the parts in Mexico.

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    A mid sized city with a local feel, I kind of like Durango.

    I decided to stay in Durango while I figure it out, I could probably make it another 1000 miles without issue but, without going someplace that I know has the parts it seems like an unreasonable risk. And, since I am to stuburn to go back north and have the parts shipped to a border town which would probably the sensible thing to do I have hunkered down for a couple days in Durango to try and figure this out.

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    At least its given me time to catch up the blog.
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  10. ClutchDumpinDan

    ClutchDumpinDan Go do

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    That’s better than wet...

    Glad to see you back on the road. Great pics! Looking forward to more of Mexico.
  11. kubcat

    kubcat Long timer Supporter

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    Is it really, though?
  12. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    Yes I think I prefer dry, it wasn't very large and was more than likely a stain that had been through the wash at least I hope so.
  13. SOLOKLR

    SOLOKLR Back to work

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    What doesn't kill ya, makes for great stories. Or something like that
  14. phreakingeek

    phreakingeek Big Ear Inc - Virginia Provider Super Supporter

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    Well, got to say that this sounds better than the place I stayed at on the TAT where there was weird light shining into the room...when I went to investigate, it was bullet holes through the wall and door. I packed them with toilet paper and hoped for the best.

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  15. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    I spent my time wandering about the city, lounging in coffee shops, catching up on just about every TV show I’d ever watched and then some. Somehow there wasn’t a single place that had the correct seals for my water pump in the entire country and after spending a good two days looking with the help of some generous hostel employees I gave up and ordered the parts from the US.
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    Waiting... Waiting...

    It was nearly a full two weeks after arriving in Durango that I was finally ready to leave. The whole ordeal was fairly cheap considering the time and effort it required I probably spent about $250 on the bike, $60 of which was shipping. It’s amazing how cheap labor is here.

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    I have noticed a good amount of police and military presence, couldn't say if its more than usual but, they don’t seem to be much of a bother

    I got on Mex 40 to Mazatlan, not so much because I wanted to go to Mazatlan but, because the road looked twisty and mountainous. It was. Not 30 minuets outside Durango and the road was already better than anything I’d seen on this trip.

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    After two weeks stuck in one place I was itching to move
  16. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    It occurred to me that I should have probably ridden around locally for a day before leaving to make sure everything was in order with the bike but, that thought slipped further and further away.

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    It seemed that with every mile I went the road got curvier and the scenery prettier.

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    I was starting to feel breathless, I couldn’t tell if it was the altitude or the stunning beauty.

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  17. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    I rolled into a small town hanging to the side of mountain, it seems that horses are a much more common here.

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    A perfectly normal place for a cow to be

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    Occasionally I got a glimpse of the toll road with its massive bridges and tunnels, no wonder tolls here are expensive, it must have cost a fortune to build that highway.

    It was getting late, and while I could have made it out of the mountains to a larger town before dark I was tired and hungry so, I pulled into Copala a little with steep cobblestone streets, I ordered some food at the one restaurant that was open and asked for a hotel, they said there wasn’t one but there was a house I could stay at. By this point I was tired and full which is an even worse combination. Despite only understanding a fraction of what she was talking about it turned out to be a pretty nice place, at least once I was able to convince the old lady that owned it that I didn’t need the dresser dusted, or the floor mopped. All I needed was a bed.
  18. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    Pretty sure I passed out for a good 12 hours.

    In the morning I made the final push to Mazatlan.

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    There is something about making it to an ocean that feels like you have accomplished something grand.

    I realized I don’t miss being able to understand the conversations going on around me or maybe the Mexican backdrop made the english speaking tourists more crass and arrogant in comparison. After the initial shock however, I did enjoy being able to communicate in sentences myself.

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    I thought I would be happier to be able to understand some what was going on around me.
  19. wetwider

    wetwider Been here awhile

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    `Mighty good traveling with ya, though I'm just in my old chair waiting for the rain, "self-quarantined." Excellent pics & words. Thanks friend!
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  20. NoHorizons

    NoHorizons Been here awhile

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    After Mazatlan I headed south on Mx 15 and made it almost to Tepic before I had my next mechanical problem. In short because I’m almost as sick of writing about mechanical issues as having them:
    Electrics were shot and I had to push start (not fun, really not fun)
    Internet said it was probably the regulator or stator. A local shop in Tepic thought it was the regulator and recommended going to Guadalajara where there was a Kawasaki shop.

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    This was the shop, and how it usually looked.

    This was around the second week of March and the gravity of Covid19 was finally starting to sink in, even if most people seemed to be blatantly ignoring it (other than the occasional mask). It did throw in an air of uncertainty that somehow resulted in me waiting two weeks for the shop to tell me that it wasn’t the regulator but some sort of wire and a shot battery.

    Seriously considering renaming this thread: places I've broken down.