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Published: June 18th 2009
Listen to: ¨Long Shadow¨ Joe Strummer and the Mescaleros
I´d taken a chance - a rather stupid - one in turning down the road. The sun was low on the horizon and had no idea how the road ahead would be. All I knew was that back at the highway I had seen a sign saying Sinforosa 17 km and had a picture of a tent and another of some people looking through binoculars. Not too interested on Guachochi. I took the turn by some last minute impulse and regreted it almost immediately afterward. I don´t know why I didn´t turn around. I just kept going down a heavily rutted dirt road past dead dogs and run-down homes. ¨
¨well, you´ve sure done it now.¨ I thought to myself. ¨Everyone here sees me, everyone knows where i´m going. this sinforosa place is the only thing down this damn road.¨ I figure´d i¨d be lucky to make it through the night without being robbed, let alone back into town...
When I finally made it to Sinforosa, still unsure what it was (a national park, a resort?) a kindly, soft spoken man emerged from what appeared to be a either a
A mexican jack
He backed the truck up and the weight was lifted off the rear wheel. well, some of it...
mansion or a hotel. He came out and I asked him if I could camp somewhere, anxious and confused.
Si, his replied calmly and went over to open a nearby gate.
¨Pero, que es Sinforosa?¨ I asked.
¨Es un Devisadero¨ (a canyon) he replied. I paid the 10 peso (less than 1$cdn) entrance fee and was locked into a field with the oxen. I must admit that I was relieved to be in a locked enclosure, though I know now that I was totally safe out there. My host motioned for me to follow the road so I did. I thought I had left canyon country. Not just yet, it seemed.
From my journal shortly afterward. Once again it was all I could do to breath. How could this place be - why had nobody said anything?
the setting sun blows magenta up at the belly of the sky, spraying colour all the way to the eastern horizon. I felt well bore down into my core and was instantly full, brimming with the notion: I am on the right path. The wind softly caresses my scruffy face - a ghostly affirmation. ¨Yes!¨
(later) Far across and way up high
on a narrow mesa, someone´s made a fire. I can see it´s flicker. Tarahumara, no doubt. Who esle could find there way there. these people! Faces like ancient leather. No wonder they were never taken - they were too tough for the missionaries and their swords.
I would fight for this place. I would not die because there could be no death here - there is no time! Any who would stand against would cower and dissappear. You fools! I have the high ground and the terrain shows no mercy...
(later, watching the moon rise to the south east, over the canyon)
beneath and between the wind and crickets is a silence so peaceful...
Thought and affect float around the stone like smoke; no intention, just movement and being.
I had reached the viewpoint just as the sun dipped behind the trees just behind. I wasn´t the only one there at first, but the older couple who from Michoacán in a beat up old ford left just after I arrived. I just sat there. It was like beign the first white person to see see Grand Canyon or Palenque. I had no expectation to be
Lesser of two evils
We had to choose, based on the size of existing holes, which was the better option of his two ¨spares¨
exceeded, I was just blown away. I guess it was good Karma.
In reality, the only reason I was there and not Batopilas or Hidalgo del Parral was because I had stopped earlier that day to help an older truck driver who had a flat tire. Well not exactly. I stopped to take another effing picture and he pulled off just after, blocking me in. I could´ve made it out after he moved, but he obviously needed help so I stuck around. Some of you may know that i´ve got a bit of experience with changing truck tires, but this was something wholly different. He had inner tubes in them! Anyway, I think he was impressed with my savvy (for a gringo) but he did most of the work. I just helped with the labour. Two hours later we went opposite ways. As a result, I was only going to make it to Guachochi before dark and just happened to take the chance...
The Karma might have been a bit over extended, however. The next day my camera bounced out of my pocked (or I dropped it) and I had to backtrack from Guachochi to Sinforosa and back,
Job well done?
I guess i´ll never know if he made it to Creel, but he got a little closer
costing me an hour I could have used to make it further than Mapimi later that day...
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