Our fantastic road-trip with Dave & Anne continued into week two. We pulled away from Paso Robles and enjoyed a stunning drive back to the Pacific in Monterey. The forecast was iffy but our luck held with sunshine and clear skies.
Mexico is our safe place. That sweet spot we head to when we need to heal weary minds and hearts. When Jim’s sister passed away in 2003 we found solace in Mazatlan. When my mom passed away in 2005 we almost immediately grabbed Ron & Dario and headed to Puerto Vallarta. This fall, rather than take the planned drive around the USA, we knew that a couple of months renewing on the beaches of Baja was what was called for.
Those words, from one of my favorite songs, is an apt description of much of our life and wanderings. A season ending in Baja transforms into a season beginning at camp. Now, as the leaves begin a color kaleidoscope transformation all their own, our seasons will soon recycle and renew as well.
Joshua Tree National Park is a treasure. From our first visit two years ago the memories of the spectacular scenery has stayed with us. As the plan for our route north diverged, as they tend to do, the parks of Utah were not to be this time around but that didn’t mean we were going to miss out on Joshua Tree.
It all started with an ottoman. A broken brake fiasco south of Mulege had us pulling into Playa Santispac rather than our beloved Playa Coyote beach. We generally think of Santispac as a place for “big rigs” and all of those who want easy access to Mexico 1 rather than those seeking a bit of peace and quiet. No matter. A night on any one of the scenic beaches of Bahia Concepcion is a dream.
We decided to leave the brake fix until the next morning and then I saw it. The tall blond woman in the RV just down from us had an ottoman. A real life, straight out of a living room, ottoman that she was resting her feet on while reading her book next to the sea. A wave of envy washed over me.
As we prepared to leave Los Barriles northbound we started asking THE question that was a concern for all of us who wintered south of the border; Return to the United States on Mexico1 – that narrow hell of potholes the size of VW Bugs, speeding truck drivers, and winding miles, or take on the as of yet still unfinished Mexico 5 where 22 miles can take hours?
Food. As self-professed foodies, I admit that often our breakfast conversation centers around what to have for dinner that night. And, as much as I love to cook, eating out in Mexico is always a joy. $1 street tacos and amazingly fresh seafood are always at the top of our list. One thing we don’t love so much about Los Barriles is the lack of the less expensive options. Keep in mind~ this is coming from full-time RV’ers living on a limited budget. For anyone on holiday here you’ll think you’re getting a grand bargain anytime you venture out. And so, although inexpensive by US standards, many of the restaurants here are above what we prefer to spend on our budget so it does color our reviews. But hey, our blog, our opinion right?!
Having said that, we couldn’t NOT take advantage of all of the local goodness so we made a point of eating out once or twice a week, and at a different restaurant each time to try as many as we can during our time here. Somehow, in three months in town, we still didn’t manage to come close to trying all available options. What can I say, there are a LOT of restaurants in Los Barriles.
Without further ado~ here is what we did try.