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The Pack Family Journal is a place where we gather text and images of our lives, adventures and travels. This is a very personal site, written openly and honestly. Enjoy.

Friday, March 12, 2010

The Gypsy Journal - Feb 2010


"Only when we are no longer afraid do we begin to live."
—Dorothy Thompson

I have recently made new friends in La Paz and their story encapsulates this truth. Out of the fear of being trapped in a stressful job, my new friend Gary had enough and quit. He didn't know what he was going to do, only it that it was time to overcome his fear and make a change. Together Gary and his wife, Patricia, decided to travel south from Canada into the United States. They purchased a truck, a trailer, an inflatable boat and hit the road. 

Their travels took them from salmon fishing in Oregon to hiking in the majestic mountains of Utah; and continuing south, they traveled through Nevada to Arizona, visiting as many beautiful locals as they could. They took several months, all the while thinking they might eventually make it to Mexico. However, with every new stop and acquaintance, they would encounter the usual; "Don't go to Mexico, you'll be killed," "Mexico isn't safe," "What! You don't want to go there, it's too dangerous," "You'll be arrested and rot in a Mexican jail"—it was always the same. The fear was everywhere. Gary and Patricia began to doubt themselves and believe what they were hearing; they too were beginning to fear what they might find in Mexico. North of Tecate, Baja, they stopped.

Was it true? Would they be in danger? Would they be at risk of rotting in jail, or losing their new truck, trailer and boat? Were these legitimate fears? They sat in an RV park and pondered. Then one day they decided to walk into Tecate and have a closer look. They would stay on the main road, not drink the water or take any risks. That day they made it to and from Tecate safely and decided they would go for it. 

Still fearful of what could possibly happen, they packed up and drove into Baja, into the unknown. They drove and they drove . . . not stopping, not wanting to take any risks . . . they continued driving south past Ensenada, past San Quintin, past El Roasrio . . . they didn't stop until they reached Guerrero Negro.           

When Rachel and I met them, they had made it to "Hacienda del Sol," an RV park north of La Paz, and they had been there a month. Gary had built a wonderful palapa, a custom outdoor kitchen with his BBQ and camping stove. They had planted a garden and had been exploring the Sea of Cortez in their boat; and as long outdoors and fishing enthusiasts, they had been catching fish like none they had before. 

For them each day is a new adventure, a new view of paradise. "We passed so many beautiful things on the way down," says Gary. "We have to see them on the way north," Patricia would add. They are excited about visiting San Felipe and seeing the Blues & Arts Fiesta that Rachel and I have talked so much about. 

They almost didn't come to Baja. "We're going to live here," says Patricia, "we want to be in Baja. We don't need to be rich, we just want to have enough to live here forever." 

"The Gypsy Journal" is my journal of the places and adventures Rachel and I encounter while traveling Baja. It is our open diary of our love and life in this wondrous place, and nothing brings me more joy then when others see through the fear for the truth and come to find paradise.    

For "Only when we are no longer afraid do we begin to live."
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