I know this is long but it is pretty good and some good stories. I will add more photos as I get them from everyone.
Braden Esmithing, Blair Rakey, and I returned back from good ol Mexico. And it was a great trip we all had a great time! The first day we arrived at about 1:30. We had rented a car online so when we got there we went to find the thrifty booth. After an hour of trying to get things straightened out with some lady with a black eye when we on our way in a 1995 Nissan Sentra. We went straight the the Orozco Mendoza family's home. (The mom, Dad, son Cesar and daughter Betty live there) After about an hour we decided to go to a little "pueblito" about an hour outside of the city named Estipac. I was there for 4 months during the mission. There is really only one family there so I got to know them very well seeing that we ate there for breakfast lunch and dinner every single day. Estipac is an interesting town because in the 80's there were a ton of memebers so they built a church building. Since then all of the memebrs have gone and when I was there only about 10 people assisted. It was good to see the family. We drove back home and took it easy for the rest of the evening.
Thursday we woke up early and went to Puerto Vallarta. It was a long drive, at about 5 hours each way. We arrived there around 1:30. We really wanted to try out some surfing and we were told to go to this small town about 30 mins outside of Vallarta called La Punta De Mita. We just about arrived there but about 10 mins from our destination there was a big back up on the one lane road, so we asked what was going on. Apparently there was a big pipe that fell and was lying across the road and nobody could pass, we waited about 15 mins and decided to head back to PV. We went straight downtown and ate lunch, we then walked around down town and took in the sites and snapped some photos. One thing that was really cool was there was this kid about 13 yrs old on the beach balancing rocks on top or each other, I don't know he was doing it but it looked really cool. Of course he was doing it for some money by the on lookers. One thing I have noticed is that just about everyone down there is good at something and that is how they make their money. Whether it be a kid balancing rocks, some guy breathing fire at a stop light, washing your windshiled (even Braden was impressed at the gilrs techinique) or making homemade empanadas and selling them on the street. We then rented scooters and this part was really fun, after talking the kid down to $12 an hour for each one and me making sure he wasn't going to take my card and buy a Donkey or something, we were off. The weather was great there and once we got out of the city on a road that followed the coast, it was really a beautiful ride. We stopped at a place you could Bungee jump over a cliff down towards the ocean. Raker and I wanted to do it but 650 pesos or roughly 65 bucks was a little too much for us. Unfortunaleyl he wouldn't budge on the price because his boss was gone. (one thing about Mexico is that YOU CAN ALWAYS BARDER, AND GET THE PRICE LOWER) After stopping a few times and swimming in the Pacific for a quick "ratito" we returned the scooters and headed back to Guad. On the way home we stopped at a few roadside "tiendas" (a tienda is a small open air store) and Braden and I got hour fix of Mango and Pineapple freshly sliced right in front of us for 2 Dollars each. Never in the states! We got home and went to this place that sales tacos in the street. They were really good, just ask Raker he downed 6 of them. We then returned to the house and went straight to bed.
We got up and went to Colima (which is a different state) around 10:30 on the way out of the city Raker spotted a huge dog that had been hit by a car and wanted to snap a photo...... whatever floats your boat Rakey... The Drive to Colima is a lot better, pretty much just a straight shot. Not all windey like PV. (Another thing is it costs a lot to drive on the highways there, for example to go and come back from PV it costs us roughly 800 pesos or 80 bucks, I don't know how people travel by car there, they also have old bunky highways you can take to get to the same place that are free but we didn't try them, I imagine they are longer and a rougher ride) We arrived in Colima and went straight to the Sisters house Raker knew, he took them a bunch of clothes and they were very happy and gratful for them) we spent soem tiem there with them. We then drove to the family Ochoa's house. I had baptised them on the mish. they are really poor and have 4 girls that are all really cute. Unfortunately they weren't home so we went downtown to walk around a little. We ate and got an ice cream cone and sat in the park to take it easy. Colima is very pretty and clean, it was probably one of my more fav. areas. It was really hot and humid and it brought me back the memories of when I was there with pants and a backpack on. Uh, no thanks, I'll take a T-shirt and some shorts every day of the week and twice on Sunday. We returned to the family Ochoa's home but again they weren't there so we left a note and some shoes and shirts Raker had left for me to give to them. Thanks Rake! We drove back to Guad. returned the car and took it easy for the rest of the night.
We got up a little later start since we were drained from being on the roads the previous 3 days and ate breakfast, we went to San Juan de Dios which is a huge indoor market. Or should I say black market. We shopped for a while purchasing a few Burberry ties, some DVD's that are still in the theatres here like; Transformers (Transformex is how they pronounced it) Hair Spray, simpsons, ratatoiulle and a few others. Some Authentic White Ostrich cowboy boots, some handmade blankets, a copy of Microsoft Vista Business, a Cowboy hat, and some plaid shorts. So as you can see they have just about everything there. And thanks to Betty She had all the hook ups since she used to work there and knows a lot of people. We went back home and hung out for a while. Then we all got in Cesar's car and went to El Estadio Jalisco to watch Las Chivas (the goats) play the Unviversity of GUD. team in a soccer game. They have a league in Mexico just like our MLS does and they are 2 of the teams. It was a fun atmosphere outside. Raker mentioned the only thing that compares is a BYU football game. We ate Tortas outside of the stadium. Basically a deli style roll with meat in it soaked in a chilli sauce. We watched the game and there were some moments of excitment but they ended in a 0-0 tie. Everyone booed them for not scoring any goals. We went home and Betty was super mad and stressed because she thought she lost her camera that had all the pictures from PV on. We all searched and Braden found it in a secret pocket in the backpack (good job B) needless to say she was stoaked.
Church starts at 9 there so we got up ealry and we made them all breakfast that consisted of French Toast and Eggs. Church was good we went to their ward that I was in for 6 months so I knew a good amount of people. We went back to the house an all didn't feel good. Raker ended up throwing up outside which killed his 5 year no throw up streak. That bathroom sure did get some traffiic for the next few hours too. Sunday night the rest of the family came over Juan is the oldest son. He is married and has a few kids. Alejandra is the 2nd oldest and is married and has 2 kids. So their little place was packed with bodies, but that was probably one of the highlights of the trip just having everyone there talking and laughing. They have a great family and it was fun to be able to be around them and have them let us stay there.
Monday we got up ealry and Cesar took us to the airport, we had no problems getting to the gate and we were on our way to Mexico City. Arriving into MC it was amazing how big that city is even from the plane. Skyscrapers as far as the eye can see, there wasn't a definite downtown because the builings went all over the place. And from what we could see it looked nice and clean too. Once in the airport we went to our gate and waited. Raker was amazed at the nice quality stores they had in the airport. He wanted to Snap some photos and checking prices to see if they could compete with Nordstrom where he works. We also saw a bunch of greenie missionaries there headed off to another part of Mexico named Oaxaca (Wa-ha-kuh) we talked to them for a monent and tried to help them out. One Elder was sweating bullets either becasue he was hot or just straight nervous. They all looked totally lost. I kind of felt bad for them, but I told Raker they just have no idea what awaits them........We caught our flight to Phoenix and we were off. We got there and the pilot said it was 114 degrees so we didn't plan on leaving the Airport. We then waited some more and got our flight to SLC. It was good to be back in he states. No big dead dogs in the road, no having to pay to use the grosest bathroom I have ever seen. It was nice. We got in SLC around 10 and all went our seperate ways. I seriously had a great time and love them people and sights there. The family we stayed with was awseome and I love them very much. And as Braden said, "we will talking about this one for years".