|© 1998-2012 EarthRoamer|
Somewhat panicked, I head back to my truck but I'm having trouble finding it. I know I parked it on this street but now its not here. Maybe I parked illegally and it was towed? After stumbling around, I find my truck right where I left it. It was just down the street further than I could see, hidden behind a tree. I search the truck, and no ATM card. I mentally retrace my steps, and realize I last used my ATM card yesterday at Wells Fargo Bank. Should I head back north and resolve this problem in California, or continue south with the cash I have on hand? I have plenty of food, but I don't even know the price of diesel fuel in Mexico. I count my money and I have a little over US $600 in cash and travelers checks. It's about a 1,000 miles to Cabo San Lucas where I should be able to have a new ATM card mailed to me. At a conservative 10 miles per gallon, I will need about 100 gallons of fuel to make it to Cabo. I don't know the price of diesel in Mexico, but assuming it is expensive and cost US $3 per gallon, 100 gallons of fuel will only cost US $300. That gives me $300 for food, camp fees and emergencies.
The margin for error is small, but I decide to continue south with the money I have. I go back to the bank, convert all of my dollars to pesos and head out of town. As I'm leaving town, a local guy looks at my truck, smiles and gives me a big thumbs up. I can't help but forget about my lost ATM card and smile back.
The drive after Ensenada is surprisingly green and lush. I stop for a late lunch in the camper, and decide to find a camp for the night. My camping guidebook mentions a beautiful camp by the beach, but says the access road isn't suitable for RVs - sounds like a good bet. The road is rough driving in, and without a GPS, I'm not sure I would have found my way through the tomato field maze to the campsite. My first day in Mexico and I'm already in four-wheel drive. The owner of the campground speaks little English, and I speak even less Spanish, but the connection is made when he carefully walks around my truck, stops to examine the front suspension, and energetically announces "ˇBaja Especial!"