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        Flying Cloud
                 The Log
 
May 1, 2007
Well we made it to the end of another month! Today, I finally started sanding the aft rails. This job sucks! However, it has to be done now or it will be a huge problem later on. I should finish it tomorrow morning. the temperature was perfect for working outside this morning, it was only about 60 F degrees. A new boat with two kids near Adrians age came in late yesterday, so I took him over to make introductions. I'm sure they be getting together soon. This is another holiday weekend here. They have fathers day and mothers day, etc., but today is kids day. They even had a parade today for Labor day. You see, they have to have double celebrations because, they have about 720 holidays per year..... the night before last there were some pretty good fireworks in the south end of the bay, too. I am not sure what that was all about. I keep forgetting to bring my camera with me, so the page is a little short on pictures right now, but don't give up hope! Yesterday we had lunch at the Maestros hamburger stand, it was wonderful as usual, then we hopped on the bus to check out Soriana. It is a honest to goodness shopping mall... and wouldn't you know where it's located? Duh! It's in the suburbs of the city. Just like back in the states. We found that the Soriana store itself was sort of like a super Walmart, and the prices were pretty good on a lot of items. We have to do some provisioning pretty soon, so we wanted to check everything out. We were going to watch a movie at the huge theater complex. However, we were thwarted in that effort. You see, some of the movies are in English with Spanish subtitles (no problem there), and some are dubbed in Spanish with no subtitles (Ok, Eileen could watch it..). But of course, the one we wanted to see was in Chinese, with Spanish subtitles. So we gave up and took the bus home. In other news, the stainless power booster wings that I had installed on the outboard turned out to be a total failure. I guess the joke was on us... because we actually went significantly slower, and also couldn't plane anymore. So I took them off. Now we are fairly flying across the water again! Yippee! Since I am jabbering on like an idiot right now, I may as well mention that we were able to get in touch with our Canadian friends regarding their wedding video. It turns out that this is their only copy, and were just looking for it the other day. Weird... and funny. So I guess we'll be mailing that off to Canada soon. (Jamie)

Another tribute picture for our favorite Maestro of the Hamberguesas!

Our favorite hamburger stand. At the corner of Bravo and Revolution.

May 3, 2007
Didn't do much yesterday. Finished the sanding and scuffing the aft rails. Adrian went over to the neighbors for a movie night. Eileen and I tried in vain to get connected on the Southbound Net. Our friends, Greg and Nancy on "Festima Lente" asked us to get in touch via the net. However, no one seems to be able to hear us for some reason. I confirmed that the mic works today and checked the SWR, etc. on the radio and everything looks excellent. Will try again tonight, and see what happens. After the let down on the net, I decided to go and get some pizza. Rin Rin Pizza is only a dinghy ride and 3/4 mile walk. The pizza is pretty good and the price is too. Only 120 pesos for two pies with two toppings on each one. I hustled back to the boat, just in time to pick junior up from the neighbors. Nothing of note to report for today yet.

May 5, 2007
It was another holiday yesterday evening. I know you don't believe me, but it's true. La Paz was celebrating it's 412th anniversary. And there were tons of festivities. The Malecon was full of all kinds of vendors and stuff, something like a carnival. They had three separate stages with different live music at each one. A very long Panga parade went by on the water. At about 10 PM they started the fireworks show, and it was a doozy! The big surprise was at the end of the high altitude fireworks they lit off the ground stuff. This was a little exciting because the sparks were flying all over the people nearby. It was basically like a zillion sparklers sending sparks down to the ground like a sparkler curtain. Definitely NOT something they would do in the states. It was.... something dangerous... I know some of you can remember when people actually did dangerous stuff without being too worried. Ahh, those were the days! Ok, so today there will probably be some more festivities, since it's Cinco De Mayo. If you don't know about this holiday, check it out here. We plan to go check out a new place called Elixir near the marina tonight for dancing. Will report later on this evening.  In other news... the Ham radio is working perfectly fine. We were able to get in contact with the Southbound net last night without any trouble. I guess the propagation just sucked the previous night.

We went for a nice long dinghy ride this afternoon and beached it on the Malecon to take our drifter to the sailmaker's for a small repair.  We did not have the correct sailcloth on board to do the job right.  We are able to buy some from the shop for future needs.

We all took showers today.   Woo hoo.  We also organized two months of Adrian's schoolwork and packaged it for US shipping.  A couple from the marina are going to Washington, so we thought it'd be much more reliable to ship in such a manner than to wait 10-15 days for MX mail service.  We are starting to learn our way around oddities like this that are so simple and reliable back home.  Of course, we could DHL a letter 3-day for about $50.  Anyone willing to fund such an act?? Not I!

We are working to arrange the return of our textbooks with another couple driving to the US next week.  Hopefully that all works out.  It sure would save us so much trouble and moolah to do so.  All the little things that you'd never think much of in day to day routine in North America, Europe or most of the rest of the world...  We also found bus ticket prices tripled.  $150 one way to the border from La Paz.  This sure did put the k'bash on the idea of returning to San Diego this month for Adrian's exams.

We've researched flights in and out of La Paz, and with some advance planning, they can be had for about $550 which is reasonable if you wish to vacation with us.  Another day... 90's by day, high 60's by night.  Can't wait to get to the islands for clean water and swimming! (Eileen)

I am going to attempt to change the prop on the boat today. So we'll see how that goes. Last night, we found an awesome pizza place. It was way better than Rin Rin. We always missed it before, because they are only open from 6 pm - 11 pm. It's not far away, right along the Malecon. (Jamie) 

May 7, 2007
Friday night was the second annual Magote fest, or as some people call it...the first annual "I can almost see the Magote Fest" Which is actually more appropriate since it was actually held at the cruisers club next to Marina De La Paz. Everyone had a pretty good time I think. Lots of good food and drink. 

My prop changing project took two days and two tanks of air. Even after all that, I still couldn't get the prop off. SO I had to settle for just the new cone nut and zinc. Which was the main purpose anyway. The prop change would have been a bonus. If we haul out this fall, maybe I'll try it again. I did manage to lose the handle for the prop puller that I borrowed, so that is a project for tomorrow.

We tried to go see Spiderman 3 yesterday, but it was completely sold out, so I think we are going to go on Wed. which is half price day anyway. Maybe we'll combine that with a provisioning run. (Jamie)

May 8, 2007
So the big news yesterday was "Festima Lente" showing up here from Mazatlan. I finished my new handle for the puller.  The folks on "Sassona" really liked the new handle design, so I was off the hook. Adrian went to see the shell museum at Marina Costa Baja today with the family from "Sasonna". Eileen and I went around town a bit with Greg and Nancy from "Festima Lente" got some stuff at the Bravo market, a big fillet from the meat store, and had hamberguesas from the maestro. Eileen has finished her 4th coat of Bristol finish on the aft rails and it's looking pretty good. I might have to scuff up the forward sections soon. Below are various pictures of stuff that's nearby. I have had some complaints recently that there is too much talk and not enough pictures in the log....so here you go. (Jamie)

One of the haulout facilities in La Paz. catering to motor yachts______Festima Lente at anchor

Flying Cloud at anchor in La Paz______The first annual I can almost see the Magote Fest

Monument at the end of the street that leads to chicken heaven...______One of the Pollo rotiserie shops in town. It's not half bad.

La Paz Harbor Movie (19 mb)

Here are some pics from The youth symphony group that Eileen has been practicing with. Photos courtesy of Tom from "La Casita"
Eileen getting ready to blast out some tunes on her horn.______eileen and her campadres at the youth symphony

The horns______Cool horn pic

Here is the Dinghy dock and the internet cafe. The cafe is where I spend most of my waking hours uploading crap to this log. The wireless is free here. Too bad the signal doesn't reach the boat...

Evening at the Marina de La Paz Dinghy Dock______The internet cafe

La Paz Sunset Video (9mb)

May 10, 2007
Yesterday we went to see Spiderman 3, which was a total drama fest. It's a good sob movie to take your girlfriend to. I was glad that we chose to go on half price wed. So the movie only cost 31 pesos. Not bad. Adrian and I went with our friends from "Sassona". On the way home, the four of us were standing in the 100 deg heat waiting for the bus to come by. When out of no where came a savior with an air conditioned car. It was our buds from La Bella Aurora. Thanks Dana!

Today is Mothers Day here in Mexico. Yeah, I know, another holiday. Well they just can't get enough of them down here. All the stores are having sales, etc. Eileen even scored a nice red rose from the greeter person at the CCC grocery store. We ordered our new foam mattress for the V-berth today. Hopefully this will help with Eileen's back and neck problems. They are supposed to deliver it to the Marina for us. Which will save us some serious aggravation. Also, today was a ladies luncheon. This is one of those get togethers where all the woman complain about their aching bones and how they can't get their husband to take a bath, whatever. While that nonsense was happening Greg and I went over to the cafe to feed out internet addictions. I finally signed up for Skype, so that we can make cheap phone calls through the Internet, once in a while. It really helps when your on hold, and it's only 2 cents a minute instead of 50 cents per minute on the cell. So far, it's a pretty awesome system. Then we ended our busy day by going for a dinghy ride to the south bay. We had a couple drinks and chatted for a couple hours until sundown.

La Paz looking north from the south bay

La Paz South Bay Pano Movie (9mb)

And here is a short video for those of you who know Greg and Nancy from Festima Lente and have been wondering what they look like now that they are cruising.

Greg and Nancy arrive to pick us up for  south bay dinghy ride

Greg and Nancy in the Dinghy Movie (5 mb)

Here's one more downloadable item. If you've ever wondered what kind of nonsense people talk about when they are drinking in a dinghy..... This is an audio clip regarding the movie Fargo.

Fargo Audio Clip (300k)
 

Bird poo on Eileens newly varnished rails. Sucks! At least they waited for the varnish to be dry.______A boat on the beach in the south bay. Most likely from one of the hurricanes that pass through La Paz once in a while.

The dirtiness of Eileens feet....feet are nasty______Up close and personal with Eileen

May 12, 2007
Ok, I was finally able to get the new mattresses. After one non delivery yesterday and one aborted delivery attempt this morning. I just took a taxi over and picked them up. Interestingly enough, they weren't made to our order, so Eileen has a decision to make. Does she want to switch ot the other side of the boat, or take the mattresses back to the place. We could sleep with them wrong side down, but then what would be the point of a custom mattress? Obviously I have calmed a bit about the situation at this point. The world famous La Paz swap meet is this afternoon. So, we'll go check it out as usual. Lately, there have been some dolphins swimming around the bay. One was about two feet away from the boat today, but I have not been quick enough with the camera to get a picture. Talked to the airlines about sending Adrian to NY for the summer. I think it can happen. We now need to decide which airport in Mexico, we want to commit to sending and receiving him. (Jamie)

The world famous La Paz swap meet. Eileen checks out some stuff______Swap meet junk

May 14, 2007
The good crew from "Estrella" showed up in town today. They made it up as far as Muertos. We got to hang with them a bit today while they were running around trying to tie up all the loose ends in order to submit their FM3 visa paperwork. We had a great dinner at a seafood place that Eileen and Shannon (from "Sweetie") had found during their girls night out. The top dish of the night seemed to be Eileen's seafood soup, which was piled high with all kinds of good stuff. It had scallops, shrimp, snails, fish, an overgrown crawfish, and even a lobster claw on the top. After each of us had finished our respective meals, Eileen still had enough left over to share. We walked back to the Flying Cloud and had a sleep over. Everyone passed out pretty fast I think. (Jamie)

The Estrellas and KC from Boraes in our favorite internet cafe...

May 16, 2007
Yesterday was big goings on around here. Estrella returned to their boat in the afternoon fully loaded with a deflatable from Flying Cloud and an 9.9 hp outboard from Boraes. Which should allow them to fairly fly along, if they don't have good wind from Muertos to La Paz. I managed to finally install one of the 12 volt plugs today. This will be nice later on for running the computer, so that we don't have to run the inverter. I have a second one to install, but I have to decide where we want it first. It was a small project, but one that has been on the back burner for at least 5 years. In other news... the new mattresses have been somewhat of a success. Eileen wanted a really hard mattress, which she has now decided should have a memory foam top. Thank goodness we have that on board. She is planning to do some canning in the next couple of days. Also, she has to do some french horn teaching today at the music school. Maybe she'll tell you about it later..... (Jamie)

Just a random picture of our galley.

May 18, 2007
Estrella has officially made it to La Paz. Here's a picture to prove it...

Estrella arrives in La Paz harbor.

Estrella Anchored La Paz Movie (5 mb)

Eileen had a super busy day yesterday. She canned up a bunch of beef, which will make some awesome meals later on. She also, sewed together a sun cover for the forward section of the boat. It has made life more bearable in the heat of the day. (Jamie)

Eileens canned beef!______Forward sun cover, now we have pretty good shade over the whole boat.

May 20, 2007
Not much to report today. Slept until 1100, that was nice. Helped Adam on Estrella align their engine. While Eileen and Kris walked around town checking out fabric stores. Adrian had a marathon at the internet cafe playing video games. We had nice dinner at the local Super Burro with Greg and Nancy from Festima Lente and Adam and Kris from Estrella. The prices are decent and the food is good. Last night we went for pizza at Pizza a Pezzi. We just love this place. They serve the best pizza ever. Of course, the guy who runs the place is Italian. At least I think he is... I threw my best Italian phrases at him and he didn't even flinch. He had a come back for everything. I owe all the Italian that I know to our good friend Peter Pags, who is toiling away back in good ol' Arkansas. (Jamie)

The gang in front of our favorite pizza joint in La Paz.______This time I am IN the picture for once.

May 24, 2007
We went to see another movie yesterday. It was the new Sandra Bulloks one called Premonitions. Although it wasn't the best movie I have seen, it was far better than the cry fest (Spiderman 3) that we saw last time. We hoping to be able to see the new release of Pirates of the Caribbean soon. 

Dolphins in the Bay Video (19 mb)

May 26, 2007
We went to Fler de Cardon last night to have a little send off party for Mirriam (Moonhunter). She has to return to Canada and build up some cruising funds. We had an awesome potluck, shot the breeze, and played a couple of games. Here is the list of party guests: Mike and Kirstin (KiaKaha), KC Mandy Vien Ryan Andrew (Boreas), Bill and Mirrium (Moonhunter), Jamie Eileen Adrian (Flying Cloud), Adam and Kris (Estrella), A good time was had by all. Fler de Cardon is a huge house that is currently being used as a B&B. The crew from Boreas has been house sitting for the owners, so it was the perfect spot for this get together.

Fler de Cardon central garden.  by Kris (Estrella)______Bill from Moonhunter Adam from Estrella at Fler de Cardon
 

Jamie and Eileen - by Kris (Estrella)______Fler de Cardon Central garden from above on terrace. by Kris (Estrella)
 

Fler de Cardon Front Parlor______Fler de Cardon spiral staircase

May 28, 2007
We had a little get together last night (Sunday) on the boat to celebrate the fact that Bob and Phyllis on Bellatrix finally made it to La Paz. We had a good time boozing it up and shooting the breeze. 

On Monday we had a long long day seeking out medicine for Adrian and hiking between stores and atm's.  It was about 102F and I felt a little ill by the time we got home.  I was supposed to go to a last practice with the symphony, but took some Advil and napped instead.

Tuesday was the big day.  The Junior Symphony in La Paz had its spring performance.  I had a 4 measure mini-solo debut, it was a load of fun and the kids played extremely well.  Some of our friends from the cruising fleet came to the show and we stopped at a street vendor for burgers and tacos on the way home.  A popular food here is a super burro.  It's basically a massive long burrito.  The tortilla wrap is huge.  We tried one and shared it between Jamie and myself.  It's big enough to feed a small family.  It was 35 pesos.

Wednesday was another shopping day.  Jamie was working on building a new wood/fiberglass transom for the dinghy (the portaboat), so Adrian and I and Nancy (Festima Lente) walked about a mile and a half to the dollar store to stock up on odds and ends.  There are a lot of american foods like sweet pickle relish and coconut milk or cream to be found that are a premium in grocery stores.  I always start my provisioning in the Super $1 or the Waldo's $1 or the Solo un Precio.  There is also the ISSTE, a government grocery store/pharmacy where we like to get some stuff.  When we've exhausted all options, we go to the CCC or Lei's or Sorrianas grocery stores or City Club, there are also the occasional Costcos around.

While we were away, Jamie went skurfing with Adam and Christina.   What this means is a dinghy with a huge outboard trailed by a surfboard with very large gringos riding it obnoxiously around the bay like superman. Skurfing is awesome!

Skurfing - Starting out on the board like surfing - by Kris (Estrella)______Skurfing - Racing the dinghy - by Kris (Estrella)

Skurfing Action Movie (7 mb) - by Kris (Estrella)

Skurfing - Pushing the limit - by Kris (Estrella)_______Skurfing - The result of pushing the limit - by Kris (Estrella)



In the afternoon we took a bus to Sorriana mall for The Pirates of the Caribbean 3.  Which we thought was quite good. It was a great day.  Adam and Christina on Estrella joined us and Kevin and the kids on Sunbreak were also there.  Allison unfortunately had to stay home because she was sick. Mucho popcorn and soda.  THEN!!!  I found a pair of shorts.  It is the first pair of shorts in the entire country of Mexico that I have found to fit.  A curious thing happens with women's clothing here.  Once it reaches a certain size, it suddenly turns into polyester and pleats.  Very matronly and I SIMPLY REFUSE to accept such nonsense.  After all, I am forever 29, eh?? 

On the last day of the month, we worked, worked, worked.  Jamie practiced his profanity while fiberglassing the dinghy transom and I did much the same while sweating away measuring and cutting fabric to cover the dinghy seats and for a refrigerator insulation blanket to hang along the outer hull.  Later in the afternoon, Adrian and I loaded our filthy laundry into the dinghy and went on a laundry/swimming pool mission at the Marina Palmira where the Sunbreak kids are.  It's about a 30 minute bay ride.  We got our butts soaked on the way home.  I was very glad to have all the clean clothes in nice heavy trash bags.  It is sooo warm now, that no one minds a good drenching in the dinghy unless we're "goin' to town".   We topped off the night with My Cousin Vinney. (Eileen)

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