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Work 4 Peace,Hold All Life Sacred,Eliminate Violence! I am on my mobile version of the door-to-door, going town-to-town holding readings/gatherings/discussions of my book "But What Can I Do?" This is my often neglected blog mostly about my travels since 9/11 as I engage in dialogue and actions. It is steaming with my opinions, insights, analyses toward that end of holding all life sacred, dismantling the empire and eliminating violence while creating the society we want ALL to thrive in

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Surviving in Durango

I am parked one block away from the coffee shop on a side street. The main street is way too busy to park on but I can’t get a signal from the coffee shop so far away.

I decide to go around the block and move my truck to the other side street that is even closer to the coffee shop. When I get to that street, it is brightly lit and there is a taco restaurant blazing lights and music, and lots of folks. It is the perfect location though, on the side street around the closest corner to the coffee shop.

I cannot find a place to park on that block, even if the taco joint was quiet and empty, so I cross the main street and take the first park on the other side of the street. I get a signal from the coffee shop but it is very very low – I can’t navigate.

It is after 10 – I’ve lost an hour somewhere – and I decide I’m too tired to be on the internet anyway. The street seems really bright and I decide to go back to the first side street I was on. I don’t like how many people saw my truck passing the taco place and this street is too deserted (as in there's no possible places where I could be watching my truck) as well as too bright.

I take the first corner and realize I’m on a nice, quiet street that is residential on one side, has a hotel in the next block on the other side, and a wall on my side. I park close to the hotel by the wall and no one bothers me the whole night.

I survive in Durango!

Durango and on my own again!

We make it to Durango before noon today. It has been interesting, and different traveling with Alma but today is her last day. She is leaving, tears, and I'm continuing on my own.

There are advantages and disadvantages to traveling through Mexico with a Spanish-speaking friend. The biggest disadvantage is that no matter how hard we tried not to, we ended up speaking english most of the time - and Alma ended up translating my Spanish into Spanish for me, rescuing those folks that had to struggle to figure out what the hell I'm saying.

Today I splurge and treat myself to two yummy veggie corn and pepper tamales, as I search for a Caffenio or similar independent coffee shop that has internet, before I leave Durango.

There are over a half million people in Durango, yet people call it a 'small town'. I wonder if that's because they are thinking Mexico City and not Las Glorias or Rosario.

I spend a long time, talking with many people, trying to find a coffee shop that has internet also. I'm not sure if people understand me 100 per cent, but I find lots of internet cafes that charge per hour, and two coffee shops that are both closed - even though they both have signs and stuff inside, they're definitely shut down.

One of the neighbors of a closed coffee-shop tells me of another coffee shop with internet. I try to follow his directions but cannot find it. I return to 20th of Noviembre (the name of a street) to try again when I see it, a cute little coffee cafe! Not the one he was talking about, but the one I need.

And yes, it has internet! So I'm catching up with everything. And I'll have to readjust to having my cute little casa-camion all to myself.
Tonite, I plan on parking close to this coffee shop, just in case I can have internet access all night and in the morning! It seems to be a quiet neighborhood with a huge university close by, several u.s. hotels around too, like Best Western and the Holiday Inn.

Tomorrow I want to head further into Mexico, maybe towards Agua Calientes, and then Guadalajara. I want to take about a week or so and then head back to the ocean for a couple of days before I go to Cuernavaca - especially if it remains cold outside. So far, so good.

Freezing in the mountains!

It is so cold, the dew on the windshield has frozen into snowflakes! I had no idea it gets this cold here and I have not done the things I should in order to protect the water tanks, especially the hot water heater.

Grrrr - I don't remember exactly what it is I was supposed to do - Shazam explained it to me but I was thinking, hey, I'm heading to the warmth and sunshine of Mexico - I won't need to drain anything.

Fortunately, I did remember to turn down the veggie oil and run the diesel before we stopped last night so at least I don't have to worry about that.

I want to go for a run but my hands freeze when I step outside. That's how cold it is!

We make coffee, clean up a little, and then I go for a walk around the park. The park ranger (I guess that's who he is) tells me the park is many mil hectareas big and there are deer and other animals that I don't recognize.

I ask if there are bears and he scoffs no, of course not.

As I walk, I see several cabins and signs that this is a protected area, for the people and the earth - and we should take care of it. I do not see any animals - they're too smart to be out in this cold!

I return, warm up the truck, and continue our journey to Durango on the free road!