Friday, March 30, 2007

Potential Itinerary

4/4/2007 Tlacotalpan
4/5/2007 Catemaco
4/6/2007 Cosoleacaque
4/7/2007 Las Choapas
4/8/2007 Raudales
4/9/2007 Tuxtla Gutierrez
4/10/2007 San Cristobal de las Casas
4/11/2007 Comitan de Dominguez
4/12/2007 Cd Cuautemoc
4/13/2007 Huehuetenango
4/14/2007 Totonicapan
4/15/2007 Lake Atitlan
4/16/2007 Cd Guate
4/17/2007 Jutiapa
4/18/2007 Santa Ana
4/19/2007 Nuevo San Salvador
4/20/2007 San Miguel
4/21/2007 Choluteca
4/22/2007 Chinandega
4/23/2007 Managua
4/24/2007 Masaya/Jonoteppe
4/25/2007 Rivas
4/26/2007 Liberia
4/27/2007 San Jose
4/28/2007 San Isodoro
4/29/2007 Palmar Norte
4/30/2007 La Concepcion/David
5/1/2007 Santiago
5/2/2007 Penonome
5/3/2007 Panama

Recent Pics

Ladies at the glasses shop, Boca Plaza de las Americas.

Puente de la Amistad

Me at the "Bridge of Friendship", Boca del Rio.

A crab just running in the street along the curb!

Rocio (Chio) and Adriana, hotel sales.

Pelon, Ana, and Karla.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Emmanuel's report of Mexico to Columbia

Click on "Emmanuel's report of Mexico to Columbia" above. A preview of territory I will cover.


I have my glasses now, and my digital camera, and my check card, the three main elements I needed to get in Veracruz. In terms of sponsorship, I hope to contact the companies of the US Climate Action Partnership: Alcoa, BP America, Caterpillar, Deere & Company, Duke Energy, DuPont, FPL Group, General Electric, Lehman Brothers, PG&E, and PNM Resources, which all support market-based programs and a federal-level solution for reducing greenhouse gases. I hope to get an interview with the Television before taking off from Veracruz. To make it to Panama by May 10, leaving tomorrow, I will have to average 35 miles a day. Should be doable. Some eighteen year-old in 1999 planned to average 67 miles per day from Alaska to Patagonia--he made it in 8 months, solo--a guinness world record. See Bike it Solo

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Pictures from Hotel Imperial: I got my camera!!!

Tag-team receptionists Xochitl and Mariela.

Me and Bernardo's brother, also a lawyer.

Posing with the norteno band--check out the tiger stripes on the bass.

Straight gata Carla.

Juan receiving his birthday cake at the party last night.

Juan receiving his birthday cake at his party last night.

Receptionist Xochitl ("Sochitl") and I. Xochitl means flower in the Aztec language of Nauhatl. The goddess of flowers, Xochipili, is featured on the 100 peso bill.

Cashier Carla from Gutierrez Zamora posing with the flowers.

Juan Velez' birthday party last night. From left to right: Imajin, Bernardo, me, Juan Velez, Ana Cervantes.

Luz, Anabel and I.

Anabel and Luz.

Luz and I.

My friend Anabel and I at the beach at night.

Anabel and I at the beach at night in Veracruz.

Bell boys Victor and Junior.

Bell boy "Junior", also a good soccer player.

What's up, world?

Friend and lawyer Bernardo, also friend of hotel owners. His father and Juan's father were both big lawyers in Mexico, and that is how they know each other. They are all following in their fathers' footsteps.

My friend Cuautemoc Benitez Patino, who is a tour guide and has gone on bicycle tours, motocross bike tours, and basically one of my biggest fans.

Getting the gloria at the tricycle vendor stand.

Anabel and Luz getting a raspada or a gloria, which is like a snow cone in a cup. Anabel's had raspberry and banana, I think.

Anabel and Luz cannot compose themselves for a photo on the beach.

Me and Luz on the beach at night in Veracruz.

My friend Luz, who I met through Anabel.

Luz not yet ready for the photo.

Receptionist Anabel on the right, her friend Luz on the left, my eyebrow on far left.

From left to right: Hotel manager Juan Velez, cashier Carla, me, Jorge/Pelon, Ana, Tuny, Manuel.

Workers in the La Revolucion restaurant, next door.

La Revolucion manager Marina (the restaurant next door, which actually helped me before I met the owners of the hotel).

Tuny taking care of a bill.

Waiter Manuel showing is tray skills. Leandro in backround.

Waiter Leandro with some drinks, waiter Manuel, and cook Maria Guadalupe in the backround.

Waiter/bartender Julio. Loves to dance to reggaeton song "Salio el Sol" by Don Omar.

Waiter Manuel. Big-time fan of soccer powerhouse Chivas Guadalajara--who by the way will be playing the Washington, DC United this Thursday, I think, in Guadalajara. Chivas and DC United tied 1-1 in the first leg of the match up in DC. Whoever wins the upcoming game will play the winner of Houston Dynamo and Pachuca (another Mexican powerhouse from the state of Hidalgo) in the final of the tournament. Manuel and I are constantly talking about our teams' matchup. I don't know who is going to win. Chivas have the hometown advantage, but DC is still capable of an upset/winning. Manuel is a good soccer player as well.

Cook Maria Guadalupe with some of her artwork.

From left to right: waiter Tuny, cashier Carla, restaurant manager Pelon ("Baldy")/Jorge, Ana Cervantes, and waiter Leandro--a good soccer player.

Ana Cervantes and Carla, in the hands of Pelon.

Cashier Yanet--a sweet girl, lived in San Francisco for a while.

Bellboy Victor. He is a great guy. Stands with the model of the Hotel and the base of the oldest elevator (it's still functioning) in Latin America.

Receptionist Pati; she is actually from a town, Minatitlan, that is three days down my path.

Hostess Karime and I.

Cashier Yanet and I.

Article about how the Swindle film is riddled with errors

Click on the title of this post for an article about how the Swindle film used misleading graphs and data to forward its points.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Article and discussion of the Swindle Film

Click on the title of this post for an article about the below Swindle film for some summary of the film and following discussion by readers. I, personally, think the film was interesting, and it was the first time I had seen a polished presentation of some compelling counter points in the global warming discussion. While the global discussion on global warming has now shifted in favor of action, and in favor of the understanding that the rise in CO2 atmospheric concentrations, which even the makers of this film don't dispute are man-made, are CAUSING the warming we are seeing, I would like to see the rebuttle of the points raised in this film by the scientific community.
Of note on this blog, I have figured out how to allow comments to be made by anyone, not just registered users:)
Also of note, I just received my check card via FedEx mail (perhaps I should offset the emissions of the mailing:)). I had cancelled the other card and had my bank FedEx a new card directly to my hotel here in Veracruz. In the next couple of days, I will buy new glasses and digital camera, and then I plan to head South!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A movie challenging the fundamental cause of global warming

I ran across a video called The Great Global Warming Swindle. It might just be a scam. However, I do kind of want to get the scientist's response to the claims in the video. While the video claims the variation in the sun's activity causes the warming, scientists have said that they cannot attribute the current warming trend to purely natural/non-anthropogenic causes.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Another Climate offset company

Cool Planet I got this from David Kroodsma's Ride for Climate webpage. I have been talking with him recently for tips on my central american segment, since he just finished biking it (a few months back--now he is in Chile, finishing up his California to Tierra del Fuego trip).

Monday, March 12, 2007

The deal

So I bought plane tickets from Panama City to Washington, DC to attend my sister's wedding, my brothers' graduations, and my highschool reunion. I think I will be doing some sponsor hustling during that near-month visit to DC--between May 10th and June 7th. This means, obviously, that I have to bike to Panama City by May 10th. So the next almost two months are, you guessed it, CENTRAL AMERICA! I am getting all revved up and ready for the trip. Trying to tie up loose ends--buying glasses, digital camera, etc. I am going to do this in the absence of the card. When there is a will, there is a way. I am also working out my itinerary--stops, directions, etc. I am using some of the lodging networks I list in the yellow section. I am also trying to shore up some sponsors here in Veracruz before I leave. I hope to leave in the next 4 to 7 days.

How did you get put up in a four-star hotel for free?

yeah, these guys--23 and 26--are the sons of the owner of the hotel. they are into extreme sports--scuba diving, mountain climbing, bicycle trekking. they saw my bike outside their hotel and they asked me about it. they said if there is anything I need, they will do their best to help. They are descendents of old Spanish money. Their dad was a famous lawyer in his day, and his sons study law now. they told me i could stay as long as i wanted. they helped me get interviews with the local newspapers, and I almost got a television piece out of those interviews.

Maya Pedal

Michael Karpman just emailed me this article (click here) about a point of interest in Guatemala where they build pedal-powered machines of all types. To see Maya Pedal's website, click here.
This was my response to Michael:
Thank you, Michael. I plan to stop at Maya Pedal. The article gave me a better understanding of the place. I am interested in building a bicimaquina that would generate electricity to charge a battery. I have been to energy fares at a power plant where they try to teach you to save energy. They had a station where you had to pedal to light up bulbs. They would turn on one, two, three and four bulbs so you could feel how it was harder to pedal with more bulbs. They also showed the difference between fluorescent bulbs (easier to power) and incandescent bulbs.


Pedal-powered washing and drying machine!

Pedal-powered clothes washer

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Would like to leave Friday; Working out a flight from Panama

If possible, I would like to leave Veracruz on Friday, whether or not I have my VISA. I am also working out a round-trip flight home from Panama City for my brothers' graduations and my sister's wedding.

Friday, March 09, 2007

"Activist bikes to Brazil for ecology," reprinted from National Catholic Reporter, March 9, 2007

P.J. Park in Veracruz, Mexico
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Raleigh, N.C.
On Sept. 17, Paul Joseph “P.J.” Park loaded up his custom, Dutch-built touring bike with mounted waterproof gear bags and headed south from his home in Washington, D.C., for a 9,000-mile trip. His destination: Natal, Brazil.
An avid environmentalist, Park, 26, is on a mission to promote cycling as a means of transportation and to garner support for the Climate Stewardship Act, a bipartisan bill in the U.S. Senate to cap greenhouse gas emissions, most of which come from car and truck exhaust and from coal-fired power plants. At each stop, Park has asked people to sign a petition in support of the bill. The federal act would cap greenhouse gas emissions in 2010 at 2000 levels, and would require compliance by all U.S. businesses and industries, Park said.
The bill will subsidize technologies to “jump-start the market to help corporations to meet the caps,” Park told NCR during a stop in Raleigh, N.C., early in his trip.
Park said past efforts to curb emissions that cause acid rain were “a resounding success” in reducing acid rain damage. A reduction of greenhouse gases is also an achievable goal, he said.
“In my everyday life I try to live a lifestyle that relies as little as possible on burning fossil fuels,” Park said. In Washington, he rode his bike six miles each way to work, limited his use of electricity and persuaded his family to buy “green power,” an option where a utility company allows customers to supplement their energy needs with renewable energy sources.
Before he left home, Park’s family and friends held a party and fundraiser that collected about $1,400 for trip expenses.
Park, who lived in Brazil with a local family in 1999 while he did two months of volunteer work, speaks Portuguese, Brazil’s native language, and Spanish.
In December, he reached Mexico.
On his journey Park has met Canadian anarchists, peasants who have offered him food and lodging, and many kind people who have befriended him. His lone flat tire came when he ran over a nail in Raleigh.
Patrick O’Neill is a freelance writer living in Raleigh, N.C.
Related Web site
"Bike to Brazil" blog