The owner, Leon, of Barrett Junction Cafe & Mercantile, graciously allowed us to stay behind his establishment. However, it was difficult to sleep, even with a half a liter of Karl Strauss Octoberfest. The combination of the impending border crossing, highway noise and helicopter patrols made it difficult to sleep soundly. I was worried that the US Border Patrol had traced my footprints back to me.
The start to the morning was slow. Taking two weeks off completely knocked us out of the normal biking and camping routine. Starting the stove, making coffee, cooking oatmeal, etc. seemed to take twice as long.
We were ready to leave when Sarah discovered a flat tire. I noticed that my front tire was loaded with goat head nutlets (aka puncture vine) and was soft.
Not an auspicious start to our Mexican venture.
After repairing two tubes, the ride to Tecate was uneventful.
The border crossing was easy. We simply walked across into Mexico and no one checked our passports, searched our bags or performed a full body cavity search. It was too easy. For all anyone knew, we could be in Mexico to work illegally or smuggling in Taco Bell burritos.
I backtracked and inquired about a tourist permit. Luckily I did. A few minutes filling out forms and paying the fees, we had our six month permits and passports stamped. Mexico welcomed us with open arms (except they confiscated our cannon).
Our journey down Baja California was off to a good start … and then a bird pooped on Sarah’s face. Not just a dainty little parakeet poo, but a full sized Mexican condor dump.
After cleaning up, we figured that the bad luck was out of the way. Now I was ready to tempt fate.
After exchanging some money, we rode to the outskirts of Tecate and stopped at a roadside stand for some food. We had a great meal of tostadas, Coca Cola (with real sugar, no corn syrup) and tap water.
As we rode off (on a road with a spectacularly wide shoulder), I noted the time. I wondered if Montezuma would be punctual or tardy with his revenge.