Before I came down with a cold for my birthday, I took a day trip- no, this was definitely a road trip- out to Mexicali. Why? I hadn’t been there! And I had a chance to go. Simple enough.
What I knew about this city was hearsay: the only thing you can do in Mexicali is be hot, drink beer to not be so hot, but end up just being drunk and hot. And eat famously good Chinese food.
Stopping at a Starbucks in the city to use the toilet and the wifi,
(my dudes, that is all Starbucks actually exist for in this dimention)
I did notice a distinct spike in the number Chinese/Chinese-Mexican people in the coffee shop.
There had better be amazing Chinese food around here then, right?
And did I even try any comida china? HA! Of course not! Why, would I EVER do that?!
I opted for a vegan place. (It was Asian fusion food, ok?!) The atmosphere was a little weird because they were in the middle of moving locations, but the food was pretty good!
Because there was no plan, there wasn’t so much to do in the city itself.
The ride, it turns out, was the primary reason to go. I could understand why people opt to drink for fun.
East of Tecate you leave the scrublands and enter the Sonoran desert.
And you can almost get the bends doing it! No, not really. But, dang, my head/ears felt funny.
The route you take goes through part of the the Sierra de Juarez mountain range. So you wend up and up from sea level to 4000 feet!
The landscape shifts from TJ city sprawl (chaos); to more pristine yet methane stinking ranches and farmland; to jumbled, rocky hills; to flat a expanse of desert, a dry lake bed.
La Rumorosa is the jumbled hills part, the winding road. It is also the name of the small town you blink-and-miss before hitting Mexicali.
It is surreal to see those mountains at first. Maybe it was just me a the time, but the land and rock formations didn’t register as real to my eyes. The giant wind turbines definitely didn’t help that situation.
Driving through, you get this feeling that the rubble around you would tumble down right on top of you at any moment.
Or a gust of wind would sneak up faster than most drivers dare to go and topple you over -land you all broken on uncomfortable looking rocks 300 feet below.
The wind doesn’t just whisper here.
And entering the desert doesn’t mean the weather is always hot. I’ve seen pictures online of the road blanketed in snow! I’ve love to see the hothead racers around here try the roads then!
This is a place of death. I wondered just how many people had died out there.
How many were taken out there to be tortured, killed, and buried to never be found.
I spied enough car bits and tires to know that many an overly confident driver did not survive La Rumorosa.
Being still so close to the US, this desolate place is also an unsanctioned crossing point. I wonder how many people thought that going through this great trial of crossing over would bring them great reward.
I wondered how many died trying to make their delusions become reality.
Places to stop and take in the sights dot the roads.
You share the stops with work-minded truckers and photo-happy tourists alike.
Standing there feeling like you are looking out at Mos Eisley space port, you realize you can’t hear ANYTHING- when there is no traffic passing you by.
I live on a busy boulevard. I’d forgotten what quiet was like! We got reacquainted in betwixt the vehicle noises.
Oddly enough, I’ve actually been in this desert before. This one stretches up into Arizona where I’d lived for a short while.
The new experience for me was standing on the edge of that desert. I don’t think I’d ever stood at the very edges of any desert before.
One might not think it as ‘pleasant’ as standing on a beach. Nevertheless, there was something similarly dramatic, exciting and powerful in there.
It took me by surprise.
The place hums with its own kind of energy. I could feel why the boys would want to take their bikes and race the curves. Or why the truckers stop at the pull offs to pray near the shrines, and take a piss.
When I go out that way again, I want to visit the archeological site El Vallecito. This is a place were you are able view ancient petroglyphs. It’s nothing fancy or extensive, but it’s nice to be close to old things in a land where everything has been built up so recently.
Vehicles push through/
Vulture circles close
La Rumorosa, Motile/
Mutters/Grips hard/Bites down
Silence, grandeur, death
Originally posted on blogger. With images! Go see ’em!