Saturday, December 8, 2012

Garmin tattoos!

The volcano views from Antigua this morning were spectacular! (Pictured along with old building in town and views from the road) Leaving Antigua on smooth concrete we headed toward the sprawling metropolis. Side note... Ever since we crossed the border into Guatemala from Mexico we have been navigating without maps of any kind, paper or GPS, through secondary roads, as our Garmin's didn't have Central America available when we left the US and the paper map we had was lacking some detail in this area... The stress level for me has been escalating quickly as I have been trying to read the oncoming signs and deal with crazy buses and make sure my dad is always in the rear view mirror as our Cardo scala G4 communication systems broke in mexico. Everything came to a head when we arrived in Guatemala city. The traffic was at an all time high level of nutso and I am convinced that the city is comprised of only one way streets some of which you can only turn right from and none of which go at perpendicular directions to eachother! Trying to find the BMW dealership for a new headlight bulb and some new communication equipment was like playing frogger for the all time championship! I managed to get us there only to find out that we went to the wrong location! Luckily, the guys at the right dealership came to the rescue and ride a motorcycle over to where we were to let us follow them back. The excellent customer service didn't stop there as they has some minor repairs done on the motorcycles in just minutes and brought out some excellent maps and gave us a rundown of the must see and do things in this part of the world. They also loaded our Garmin's with the latest Central America maps and a list of gps coordinates of all the dealerships on iur route, AND hooked us up with some new SENA helmet communication setups. Far superior to the scala G4's we had. I can't thank José and José enough! After getting back on the road with all the new technology, frogger was a breeze, we were weaving in and out of traffic and splitting lanes better than the smallest scooters. It was actually fun if you let go and just went for it, otherwise it could paralyze you with fear. Our only complaint has been that the GPS seems to lead us down the street in each city with the biggest public market which is an instant traffic jam. People selling produce and everything else, fills the streets for a few blocks and everything comes to a halt. While this is really fun to see the bikes don't really care for gridlock traffic with their air cooled engines. Made it to Rio Escondido (orchids and dad pictured) for some camping by the river and a good nights sleep before we head for Lanquin and Semuc Champey tomorrow on the advice of the tour guide at BMW! Should be some amazing waterfalls and sketchy off road action!

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