30 Mar

Puerto Vallarta and Guadalajara

So far, Bruno is doing good. We’re really proud of him. We’ve bounced him over more topes (surprise Mexican speedbumps) than I can count, sometimes going faster than we probably should. Whenever this happens, our entire sleeping platform in the back of Bruno briefly flies into the air with simulated zero-gravity and then crashes back down with a giant thud. Bruno loves it (I think?)

A few health notes on Bruno:

  • After our first gas-up in Mexico, the attendant neglected to tighten the gas cap until it clicks. Immediately after starting Bruno, his check engine light came on. I had to stop, tighten the cap fully, then days later I cleared the check engine light by disconnecting the positive battery terminal for 30 mins to do a reset. I now pay attention and listen for the clicks when an attendant puts the cap back on.
  • Each day before driving, I’ve been checking Bruno’s oil (and other vital signs). A trend seems to be that the level on the oil dip stick between min/max seems to be decreasing about 10% each day. Will need to investigate further and also buy some 5W-30 to top him up.
  • While in Puerto Vallarta and climbing some steep streets in 4WD, Bruno’s check engine light came on. Definitely not the gas cap this time.  Took Bruno to a local mechanic shop and asked them if they had an OBDII reader. They checked and cleared the code for me. It turned out to be code P0420 “Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold” which probably means I need to replace the oxygen sensors that are before and after my catalytic converter. Not urgent. If the gods have mercy, hopefully I’ll never see this error again.

Puerto Vallarta

On some winding roads outside of Tepic, heading towards Puerto Vallarta:IMG_1539

Arrived in Puerto Vallarta to spend the week with family. The next morning my uncle arranged for us all to sail with his great friends to Yelapa, a beach only accessible by boat:IMG_1549

My uncle Doug and his wonderful partner Herb relaxing together:IMG_1570

Brother and sister-in-law, Nathan & Cindy visiting from Edmonton:IMG_1556

Happiness while sailing:IMG_1565

Nice shot of Cindy admiring the cathedral in Puerto Vallarta:IMG_1599

After ample beach and pool time, some margaritas, coronas, and blotchy sunburns, we capped off the visit with a mountain bike trip through the lush vegetation east of the city.  Doug put this great video together.  Until next time, family!  We love you.


Heading east from Puerto Vallarta towards Guadalajara:IMG_1666

Roads can occasionally be pretty smooth, while other times we’re dodging potholes a-la-Québec:IMG_1673

Passing through the tiny town of Mascota:IMG_1672

Arrived successfully in Guadalajara (the suburb of Tonalá to be exact). Woke up in the morning and went to a local market looking for breakfast. Ordered the same thing all the locals were eating. The result is what I now call “Animal By-product Soup”. Possibly chicken, cow, or pig parts. Amanda thought it was mostly pig. The smell was not great, the animal pieces were pretty bad, and the broth was okay:IMG_1678

We hopped on a city bus to downtown Guadalajara and had a beautiful sunny day hanging out in the multitude of plazas that surround the main cathedral, art museum and government buildings:IMG_1686


Where is Amanda? (hint: she’s wearing stripes like Waldo)PANO_20150329_134925


Government ‘surveillance’ bug; at least they make no pretense to hide it!IMG_1711

Walking in Tonalá:IMG_1717