San Pedro grows on you. We finally got out this morning after a lot of weekend shenanigans. Saturday night was the rave across the lake.
Al and I were hanging out in the dorm with our two new friends from Miami Christine and Skyler. The buzz around town has been that some guys were throwing a party on private property across the lake and anyone is invited. Normally, that is the last place I would want to be in Guatemala, but San Pedro is a different story. 10:30pm we walked down to the dock to catch the boat that was ferrying everybody to and from the party that night. Everybody waited in the dark on the dock chatting and laughing until finally the little boat chugged around the point and coasted up to us. The craft was an extended dingy that could reasonably fit twenty people. It was an all fiberglass shell with an outboard and a low cover over the seats.
The captain pulled up to all the thirsty partiers and instantly it was full and people were still getting on. Our group hung back as we watched the boat sink deeper and deeper into the water. Someone jumped on the covered roof and the whole thing listed hard port. The captain and crew managed to keep it from taking on water and then they got pissed. After a lot of arguing and some help from Alex, the boat was at acceptable capacity and they all took off completely overloaded towards the rave.
I was happy to see that they had made it when the boat returned. Our ride was not nearly as crowded and lasted about fifteen minutes. The dingy pulled up on shore (literally they hopped out and dragged it up on the rocks) we all got out. We were at the right place, but the owners hadn’t found a big enough generator yet. It was 12:00am. The mood was very anxious.
Within ten minutes of arrival a generator fired up and the party started. I’ve never been to a rave and I don’t think what transpired counts as one by American terms. Nevertheless, I had a wild time with all my San Pedro friends. 4:45am rolled around and I finally started feeling tired… real tired. I walked down to the boat, helped gather 20 others who wanted to go back, and we were off before 5:00am on the first return ferry. I trudged back home and passed out well into the next day.
Yesterday was particularly rainy so Al and I just hung around Yo Mama’s with all of our friends playing pool and telling stories. We also took my rear tire off and fixed the way it had seated on the rim. Back in Ciudad del Carmen, Mexico we had our last flat 1,400 miles ago and I put this tire with a brand new tube when it happened. We filled it with air, put it on the bike, and took off. Alex rode behind me and told me that the tire was seated wrong.
Not a problem, we’ve had this happen before. The tire didn’t pop all the way into the beaded rim when we expanded the tube. It creates a slight wobble in my rear wheel. Usually it will pop into place after about 100 miles of riding. They always have before.
So afraid to tamper with my tires, I waited all the way to San Pedro, Guatemala to finally deal with the issue. Nearly half the tire’s tread life. Yesterday we sat out in the pouring rain and Alex figured out how to pop it into place after a lot of wrenching around. My bike took a spill. All that weight on our trail stand sent its base deep into the ground like a piston once the rain started to build up. We picked it back up and put some rocks down in the mud. Al’s bike fell half an hour later. His entire kickstand dove into the mud.
Gilad, our Israeli friend helped me get the bike back up and secured. He and Alex spent hours together at Yo Mama’s jamming in the pool room. There were a lot of fun people milling around. We met Nofar, another Israeli who spends her days working at several different hostels. Venny and Lucy, the Irish couple traveling around the world caught up with us after Zephyr Lodge. Tammy and Chanel did as well. Chao, the Chinese hip-hop dance instructor. Christine, the UF grad who grew up in Davenport, Iowa. Skyler, the Miami accountant going to be nutritionist. Luke, the Australian… enough said. Gilad was definitely the highlight though. Sarah swung in by the end of our stay too.
Today, Monday we got out of town on the first sunny morning since we arrived. The lake was beautiful on the way out. I’m glad I finally got to see it. I had grown very accustomed to San Pedro but never even witnessed the main attraction. The way the volcanoes and their ridges mix together feeding down to the lake is an incredible view. We took the north side this time and had a much easier time riding a steep switchback road back into the mist. And just like that, we were back in the Guatemalan mountains driving through the clouds.
I witnessed a rockslide from start to finish coming down onto the highway today. I was riding behind Alex as we were about 500 yards away from a turn in a valley. About 100 feet above the apex of the curve a massive piece of earth unseated before my eyes and all dropped at once in a thick cloud. I came around the corner to see a boulder bigger than a car smoldering in the middle of the four lane freeway. You could smell the ancient dirt finally exposed in the air. Five seconds earlier and it would have come down right on me. We gave each other the ‘ok’ signal and kept going.
Al and I backtracked most of today making our way through Guatemala Shitty and then an hour closer to Honduras. Tomorrow we are crossing the border into Copan to meet with Kim and Anna the Kiwis and continue to the coast. Everyone is talking about diving, but I have been emailing the local windsurf shop. I’ll have to check out the operation, but it sounds like there might be some good wind in Honduras.