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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

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Camping Puerto Escondido style!

The continuous street lights are REALLY bright, even though yellowish, & I’m hoping I can find one that is out or a place with fewer glowing lights.

Then I see a perpendicular small dirt road lined with white stones heading the few feet toward the beach leading to little palapas that are lined up in a somewhat linear row along the beach. I park to go explore on foot, not trusting the road will support my truck.

I walk down the little road that soon ends, as I suspected, on sand. There are tracks of a couple of vehicles onto the sand but I’m sure they are the little dung buggies.

No one is around, even though there is a ‘camping’ sign. I debate parking on the hardened land on either side of the white stones. My door could face the ocean and the sand, and I’d get plenty of sun tomorrow.

I turn my back to the ocean to head back toward my truck and now I see across the main brightly lit road a colorful sign on the vibrantly painted building that sits there.

I cross the street and enter the wide swinging saloon double-doors supported by lovely thick wooden trunks reaching high up to a tall, palm-strewn roof. As my eyes adjust, I think maybe this is another hostel.

Rodrigo is laying near the door on a teak wooden bed frame, similar to a futon frame but taller and on 4 legs, without a mattress, smoking a cigarette in the semi-darkness.

A couple of other people, laughing and talking softly, are sitting in a far corner at a table, also in the dark, in this open, stone-floored palapa.

On the 2 walls of this large area, I can see other doors leading to other rooms.

Rodrigo jumps up and welcomes me warmly. He brings me out into the large side and back yard that is surrounded by a striking orange and purple tall adobe fence with those amazing stone columns, and with sweet arched windows crossed by what appears to be pretty narrow dark wood slats, but that in the morning light I will see they are bamboo painted various shades of rust.

He goes to the back portion of the fence that runs along the back part of the property and reaches up to twist in two light bulbs that glow greenish-blue and illuminate a beautiful palm leaf mural on the wall that is now solid adobe and window-less.

He shows and tells me, I think, no one else is here now but many, many people have camped here from all over the world. He loves meeting people and then he surprises me and asks me if I burn veggie oil in my truck!

I ask him how he knows that and he says other people have stayed here, who also burn veggie oil. Usado I confirm.

Rodrigo shows me the bathroom which on the outside is the shape of a fat, short light house. It has about stairway made of stones and is concrete painted white and a bright dark blue. Before we enter, he leans over another concrete slab on the ground and pulls up a bucket of water that he carries into the lighthouse bathroom with us.

I ask Rodrigo if he owns all this. He appears young, with two star tattoos in the middle of either shoulder, and another unidentifiable tattoo on his arm. I see them plainly because he has on no shirt, only shorts. He is a broad, big hairless guy with either a shaved head or maybe he just doesn’t grow hair.

He tells me there is another womon here from the u.s. and he does that whistle. Lena appears immediately and asks me what I need. She is from Michigan. I of course ask her if she’s been to the Michigan Womyn’s Music Festival – she says sure but I’m not sure.

I am sure I will sleep good here tonite and I look forward to resting a day tomorrow, without having to hunt for veggie oil or deal with batteries, police, and all that.

How lucky can I be?

How lucky can I be? It is pitch black when I finally reach Puerto Escondido.

I take a street in the direction of the ocean that says “la playa” and hope it is not too steep. Two blocks later, it dead-ends into another road that I hope runs along the beach. It is populated both sides and although I can hear the ocean, I can’t see it.

I see another dirt road heading towards the ocean and at the corner of this intersection is a “Shalom Hostel”. It has a pretty iron fence and gate, with little xmas lites, and lots of greenery. I yell “hola” at the gate several times, competing with loud u.s. music.

No one comes to the gate and so I trudge back, decided to return to the highway and go a little deeper into Puerto Escondido before turning off.

I see two guys driving a water delivery truck and ask them where can I park along the beach. They tell me to return to the main road I was on and turn right at the second light. This I do, but this turns into a huge parking lot on a cliff overlooking the ocean.

I grimace and proceed. I am certainly not alone in the dark on the road, for there’s tons of traffic heading both ways on this skinny little bumpy under-construction stretch.

I pass the left that says “Centro” and make a note to return tomorrow. I drive on, passing some promising turns to the right toward the ocean, but want to get a look at more option, even a dark, minimal 20mph drive-by glance.

Finally, I see a road that clearly leads to the ocean – and I can see a string of street lights running parallel to the ocean. I turn down this street and in two blocks, it dead-ends into the lighted boulevard.

To the right, many people, bright lights, gay restaurants, snappy music, and ocean stretches; to the left, the same bright lights glow and the ocean stretches, but there are no people, and what appears to be homes instead of businesses on the other side.

First I travel down the populated side. It looks like a happening yet low-keyed resort town that I anticipate exploring tomorrow. I make a u-turn and head to the other side.

This side is beautiful. On my right is beach, some palm trees, and the ocean. On the left is empty space, homes, and a few walls. I see one potential park but continue in case I can find something better.