Day 15: Chivirico to La Mula

Fantastic, awesome route today and the Campismo experience.

Wild, rugged, & beautiful. There are no more words for the stretch of the route we covered today. Stunning! We were mostly alone for hours on end. We saw probably five cars and a few horses. Occasionally a pedestrian out in the middle of nowhere. Curiously, despite the remoteness of the region there was brand new asphalt much of the way! However, we had heard there was a bridge out, and that’s an understatement. A big giant chunk of road absolutely missing. Fortunately there was an established detour. Big imposing rock faces, shockingly expansive mountains, crashing waves and goats galore. You’ll get your baby goat fix! They are everywhere. There were times we just stopped and stared at the turquoise water and said “Yes!!! That is definitely why we came!”

The Campismo experience: Camping Cuban style! Here’s a primer: no tents or sleeping bags required. There are little huts of varying quality and design to sleep in. Sheets and towels provided. (We scored the least desirable of the choices, unfortunately). There are chickens and baby chicks on the loose and once when we stepped out the door there were a few baby piglets foraging around for goodies. Dinner is by reservation only and served on tables with table cloths and cutlery. Our hut didn’t have a private bathroom like the others so we have to use the shared facilities. Showers have no shower heads but full bore water pressure. Our particular hut has three bunk beds and could sleep 6. Others have two beds, a small bar fridge, and private attached washroom. Ours is made of stone and is eerily remiscent of an army barrack. One plug, and the fixture is so badly worn & loose that plugs won’t even stay in. However, it’s a place to sleep and for that we are grateful. We would have been even more grateful if the pizzeria shack had remained open long enough for us to get pizza. There is however the ever present beer and wine available. Randy tried to order just a glass of wine and after a degree of struggling with translation we determined that a glass is not an option. Only the whole bottle. Ok. $2.30. We can spring for that.

The poor, poor dogs of Cuba. We have seen so many mangy, needy, skinny pooches. Tonight there was a forlorn little guy in the campsite. (Randy wants to bring him home) Half bald from some skin affliction and an ear with bleeding sores. We decided to sacrifice our can of tuna to give him what looks like could be his last meal. Opened it up and placed it on the ground. The little guy ran away, probably afraid of humans who keep shooing him off to the side.

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