February 12

February 12

Bus Tour and a Blowhole

We spent much of the day today taking a bus tour of Ensenada, stopping first at the building which once housed one of the world’s most famous hotels and casinos, stayed at and played at by some of the most famous and infamous personalities of the 1920’s and 30’s. It is now a cultural and historical centre, and is often used for weddings and quinceaneras (the big “coming out” ceremonies held for girls when they turn 15). For many years it was abandoned and looted of pretty much everything that could be carried away, except for this one original chandelier, which was too big to fit through any of the doorways:


Here are a few more pictures:

Original floor, made of Canadian oak

Original floor, made of Canadian oak

The doors at left are original, imported from Cuba

The doors at left are original, imported from Cuba

Part of the grounds

Part of the grounds

Our second stop was at La Bufadora, one of only a few natural ocean geysers, or blowholes, caused by the ocean waves surging into a narrow channel ending in a small cave. The air is trapped ahead of the wave and compressed, forcing the water to explode upwards:



Here is a short video:

To get to the actual blowhole, we were of course first required to negotiate the gauntlet of vendors present at any site visited by tourists. As I later remarked to someone, “Who needs Facebook? In less than 100 metres, I made all of the friends I’ll ever need”. This is because every vendor is your best friend, and why wouldn’t you want to step inside your best friend’s place of business?

Comedians all, they are admittedly creative:

“Hey, you guys are Canadian? I accept Canadian Tire money; come inside and I’ll show you my collection.”

Or this gem of a conversation, as I went up the street in search of Jeannine:

“Hey amigo, come on in; I got belts, wallets…”

“Maybe later, I’m looking for my wife”.

“That’s okay amigo; you don’t find her, come on back and I’ll find you a new one”.

“Tell you what; give me half an hour and I’ll take you up on that”. (I felt pretty good about that one).

We did have a nice lunch and fell victim to the purchase of a half-pound of freshly roasted candied pecans, a delicacy we fell in love with some years ago in Guayabitos.

Small world; on the bus, we discovered that one of our fellow travellers went to the same elementary school (Armour Heights) in Toronto as I did.

Our lovely tour conductor Larissa advised us to try and adopt the “Mexican T Diet”, consisting of Tacos, Tostadas, Tortas and Tamales, washed down with Tecate (beer) and Tequila. Wonder what Dr. Oz would make of that?

After a very hot bus ride back (the bus having sat idle in the sun for two hours, and the air conditioning, such as it was, could not dispel the heat), we all spent some time at the pool (too cool for most of us, except for you-know-who) and hot tub, which was actually very comfortable. The Canadian contingent ended the day in lawn chairs, snacking and watching another beautiful sunset. On the road at 7:30 tomorrow morning for the longest drive of the trip down to Catavina, where we will be dry camping for one night.

I’m not sure when I’ll be able to post again, so for now, Hasta la vista!


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