In an attempt to find a witty and telling picture to start off the first part of this awesome blog entry, I already struck a problem that may be more representative of the greater issue. Let me explain…
In an effort for the sole two members of this gang to pick themselves up, dust themselves off and get BACK on their bikes, we have once again started a plot that focuses around Amerivespa! This year, it is going to be located in San Diego, California. This is *much* closer to Phoenix, but that also is a downside as much as an upside. It removes much of the adventure of going across country on bikes that really weren’t meant for such a journey. But, as I sat and thought about things, running route scenarios for the summer rally through Google Maps, one thing became noticed as a constant:
Each route aside from one brought us into Mexico, if even for a short time.
Then, as I thought about it, a route started forming in my head. But, it wasn’t the direct beeline that Amerivespa ‘12 offered up. I looked at places I’ve always avoided, but have always heard of. There was Rocky Point (which is located in a city where Wende Machete has a friend who owns a house), bastion to all of those bro-ish adventures on Spring Break. There is San Felipe, home to the Baja 250 and San Felipe 250 overland races and prime training ground for North American Dakar racers. There is Ensenada, the resort coastal town and long time resort for those looking for exotic-but-not-so-much from California. And in between… a nation of adventure that I honestly don’t know as much about as I should living so close.
But, this isn’t unusual for many living in Arizona. We live next to and depend on so much from Mexico as much as they do from us. Our cultures constantly bleed into one another. There is so much in common it’s uncanny, but rarely do you find a border so hotly contested anywhere in the post-industrial world. This leads me to the issue I had finding a picture to start this blog off.
So much of the images I found were VERY racist, anti-Mexican and downright disturbing, even for someone like me who’s seen civil war, police corruption and the inside of the federal prison system first hand. I realized that outside of the sound-bytes, false claims of “headless bodies in the desert” by psychotic American governors and the real-world kidnappings and massacres that are a very real problem that flash across the screens here in the US, I didn’t really know much. I have plenty of friends from both sides of the border, and in my world, they’re great people. But, have I actually *been* to Mexico? I’ve been to Mexicali once and it wasn’t exactly a fun trip, but have I truly given Mexico the chance and the credit it deserves?
Well, there always needs to be a point to adventure. We travel and challenge not only our bodies and mechanical skills with these kind of trips. Why not challenge my world view? Why not go and find more of our biggest neighbor down South and learn more than just slugging across the Midwest on two wheels…again?
So, after a bit of over-the-phone planning, me and my partner in crime have determined that San Diego Amerivespa ‘13 will be by way of the costal towns of Mexico! A story of adventure, international intrigue, scooters and the story of a Roller-Derby Vegan and a Socialist Engineer in an effort to find something they probably shouldn’t: Something more interesting.