Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Road To Aticama, Part 9, Shiny Chrome Smiles

Good Morning Readers,

It warms me up on this clammy and rainy Oregon morning to recall those early moments of discovery in Matanchen Bay. While camped at the point in Santa Cruz I had loads of time to daydream, gazing across the water at Aticama. We had immobilized Jezebel and we found that getting around was a well, 'Manana' experience. Every day we would walk a little farther into town, see a little more and become more enchanted with the easy ways of the locals. What a great place! A comfortable routine soon emerged - wake up, have coffee at the 'Cono' restaurant, walk the beach, make a little breakfast (a local bread maker would come by every morning with bakery goods, carried in a big basket on his head), read, play morning guitar, walk to an even smaller village nearby named Miramar to get the catch of the day, take a little siesta early afternoon after buying street tacos for lunch, get up and wander the streets of the pueblo and meet people. Most all had big inviting smiles filled with chrome capped teeth. Seems that it was the way to go back then. People were fit and trim from the hard, day to day rewarding sunup to sunset work.

Electricity has only recently come to the area. The nearest telephone was 40 minutes drive away in San Blas. No televisions. Only a few refrigerators, ice was delivered everywhere daily. There was only one truck in the entire village!! It was a really, really, really, rusted out old Dodge with tissue paper thick tires. The owner was a popular guy by virtue of this rolling iron beast. A lovely and surrealistic inviting mist of dried coconut husk hung over the streets at night, a time old way of keeping the jungle insects more to the jungle.

Three or four days into our stay I had occasion to run across the man who had first greeted us when we arrived. Turned out he was a gringo surfer from California who found the place in the late '60, fell in love with the area and a local woman, married into it all and had children. His name is Robert Brown and he would become an enduring friend and source of inspiration to this very day.



  1. Man-O-Man I love today's post sooooooo much!

    Su amigo,

  2. Thank you Jorge! Seems like the lake life is doing alright by you. See you at Christmas in Aticama.