Up In Smoke

We arrived in La Ventana early afternoon and headed to the north end of town to watch kite surfers, that’s what this town is known for.  Schools sprout up all over town as this was voted the #1 kite surfing beach in the world.  Discovery has made documentaries of this beach and sport, and the town is proud of this feature.  I’ve been told that the odd day when the wind isn’t blowing…..local people become down-trodden or depressed.  Their life is built around the abundance of winds from the north.

Norte of town.  Dozens and dozens of kite surfers.

Norte of town. Dozens and dozens of kite surfers.

Waiting for night fall we gave in and took the children for pizza at Playa Central, a surfers hangout.  Three thin crust pizzas were delicious although not filling enough for our family.  They are cooked in an outside oven from 2-9pm, then the oven is cooled down during the night to be the perfect heat to bake their fresh breads in the morning.  They stoke the oven only once a day, around noon, just in time to be about 500 degrees to bake the first pizzas of the day.

oven

We played cards, used internet, played ping pong for hours.

in Playa Central

A take off on the Burning Man in Nevada, the Mexican tradition started in Todos Santos 25 years ago as a simple bonfire party on the beach.  It has grown over the years and is a spectacular and freaky traveling event that takes place annually somewhere in the desert of southern Baja.  It has been just south of La Ventana for the past few years with no official announcement, no place or time or website or contact phone number to find out about it.  People talk about it, spread the news and show up when the flames light up the sky.

firebreathing dragon

firebreathing dragon

Saturday, January 19th was this years ‘show’.  The mastermind behind this event is Bruce Spradley, a self-claimed pyromaniac with the help of about 45 volunteers who build wooden contraptions that go up in flames.  They are made with dead wood from the desert, palm fronds, bones and beaks and various other scrounged materials.

stepping in sand in flames

stepping in sand in flames

Maret gazing at a huge hut formed out of drift wood woven together for walls

Maret gazing at a huge hut formed out of drift wood woven together for walls

green laser lights make pox

green laser lights make pox

gazing at a metal dish above ablaze with floating flames

gazing at a metal dish above ablaze with floating flames

Anders climbed in well before it was lit afire

Anders climbed in well before it was lit afire

There is loud music, interesting/bizarre costumes, large propane blow torches, giant slingshots with glow in the dark tubes, and alcohol galore.  And sleepy children who normally go to bed by 7:30 were up till 11:30.  An odd night, to remember.

 

VIEW FROM OUR KITCHEN:

We spent a night in an arroyo (dry river wash) at Los Barriles and this was the prominent view

Cow Pies everywhere.

Cow Pies everywhere.

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