June 2, 2007 -
Well, we made it to the end of another month! Yesterday was a morning of seeking objects. We started by checking out local marine stores and pricing outboards. Ours just isn't going to last. It's disintegrating piece by piece. We are manually toggling the choke and other oddities. It won't last in the salt water. It's not a blue water outboard. In the midst of this we went to reserve a rental car online and discovered that it's cheaper to do it in person and negotiate. We decided to do this, since it will cost the same to take a bus to Cabo to fly Adrian to NY and we can avoid hotel costs to boot by driving down the morning of his trip. If we time it right, maybe we can do a mini side trip. We'll see. In the evening I went to practice over at the music school (new tunes) and Jamie did a little more epoxying on the transom.
Today, Jamie finished the new transom for the Porta-Bote. Just one more coat of paint and we'll mount it. I went to practice again this morning and then did some sewing. I replaced a piece of webbing on Adrian's teva sandals. The sandals are great. They just succumbed to the scissors abuse of a 12 year old trying to cut a hard spot out of the strap. The strap unraveled in about a week and had to be replaced. HMM.. I also started sewing up my canvas that I prepared earlier in the week.
Adrian, Sam, and Paul are spending the night camping on the Magote. They should have a blast! Adrian also earned his dinghy license today and hauled water back and forth as penance for wasting so much water onboard. 60 gallons, 4 trips. He's a crappy outboard and dinghy pro, now! Then he had to drive everywhere. Our new expense will be Adrian's gas tank needs. HA! I just finished grading Adrian's last homework assignment. We need to get him packed up and ready to go. Grandma and Grandpa's house in NY should be a nice break for him. Of course, he gets to return when it's about 120F here. Might be a bit of a transition. It's only in the high 90's and 100's with cool breezes at night. We still need our blankets, the desert gives us a bit of reprieve at night, thank goodness.
In the morning, Jamie and I continued our canvas and outboard transom work. I finished the external refrigerator blanket: two layers of reflective windshield covers inside a sunbrella cover. It hangs along the hull in front of the refer. We're hoping it helps keep it cooler.
We went to La Bella Aurora to help with some caulking needed between the planks on Dana's wooden boat. Jamie put the new transom on the dinghy at the dock. We all brought goodies and planned for a work party. Well, Kevin on Sunbreak did the work and Jamie, Allison, Dana and I watched him do the work and handed him an occasional beer. The job didn't really take that long and we learned more by watching faster than if he'd spend the time teaching us.
Dana's bbq didn't work because of a bad connector she'd just had made that week, so they went to the store for some rotisserie chicken and we had a great evening. The boys were worn out from their adventure and it was time to shuffle them home.
Today I took the day off and shacked up at the internet cafe. Eileen and Kris decided to run all over town shopping for provisions and the like. It took six hours to go to the grocery store, drop them off at the boat and then dinghy to a different part of town and eat lunch, go to the dollar store and a few shops. It's always an "all-in" adventure here. Adrian went to the internet cafe, too, and had a mega gaming day. (Eileen)
June 6th we went to Cabo to drop off Adrian. The day started at 6am. Holy shit I'm glad I don't have to get up and go to work anymore! We got to the car rental at 7am to pick up our car. The girl opened the place at 7:10am and we got our car and left at 7:40am. So much for reservations. Time is relative here. That was the only snafu. Oh, and Jamie forgot the camera. He brought the nice camera bag, but the camera was in a zip lock bag on the boat from our last dinghy ride. Oh well. We saw long horns on the mountainous east coast en route to the airport. We were there by 10:30 am and all went well, if slowly. It took awhile to sort the escort information and Adrian's travel papers, and I got to escort him upstairs. We had time to feed him and get a few travel snacks before we loaded him on the plane. We left and returned via the cape and west coast route where we saw more long horns, goats and a burro. We ate Burger King in Cabo, drove through Todos Santos, and artsy village half way between Cabo San Lucas and La Paz. We didn't really stop, we wanted to be back in La Paz before dark. We went to City Club with Kris since we had the car and could buy case lots to provision the boats. Exhausted by the end of the trip. We loaded the dinghy and Jamie took the car back to Alamo.
Thursday Jamie tried to do a computer backup at cafe, then went skurfing. I finished the dinghy seat covers and installed them when Jamie returned. I put a dollar store rug on each seat and then covered with sunbrella to protect the plastic and stop burning our butts in the hot sun. We also spent some time cleaning and stowing groceries.
Eileen made a small adjustment to one of the seat covers (she missed a spot of velcro) and sewed that up. We cleaned some more and amazingly enough, things stay where we put them and the boat is sooo clean. We took Eileens shoes to cobbler for repair. Then we met Adam and Kris at the bus station to catch the shuttle with John and Bridgette on Sailsoon to go to Costa Baja. We spent the whole afternoon at the pool and then visited the shell and ship museum at Costa Baja. We all returned to town and ate dinner at Bismark. Eileen obsesses about the Sopa de Marineros. It's mariner's soup and has a little bit of everything from the sea in it. We had a nice walk home, it was warm but with a nice cooling breeze. (Eileen)
We made bonus buys at the swap meet. I found a lycra body suit for both Jamie and I for under $40 total. That is less than one made locally. That solved my concern for jellyfish and sunburns while snorkeling.
This afternoon we had a Skurfing party at our boat, with all the remaining crew from Boraes, and the crew from Estrella. So, here's a bunch of videos of the afternoons FUN! We topped off the day with a great Thai curry to fill the stomachs of some serious skurfers. (Jamie)
Talked to Mom yesterday. Adrian's luggage didn't make it to Syracuse with him and they finally contacted her with notice that it would be delivered. Good thing he had a few clothes in his carry-on bag! They are having a good time and I am sure looking forward to leaving and going into the sea. The water temperature is coming up and we have to get out of the hurricane zone. Then postings will be sporadic again. (Eileen)
Sunday we became part of a new drama. The skurfing dinghy that Estrella had been borrowing went walkabout (it disappeared). We all spent hours scouring the bay north and south of the anchorage. Various announcements were made on the VHF radio and reported to the port captain. I made new steps to get out of the water and onto the boat. Jamie bought me some 1x6x24 planks and I covered them with sunbrella and fashioned nice steps from them. I am very happy with the results.
Monday was a big day. Jamie and Adam went on another reconnaissance mission to the Magote to find the missing dinghy which was at this point presumed stolen. They returned before lunch, so we went to the bank for a summer's supply of cash and left feeling like bank robbers. It would be like getting a few hundred dollars in one dollar bills. We hit the dollar store one last time and discovered upon our return that the dinghy had been located on a beach well north of our search area. Of course, it was no longer on the beach, so it was possible that it wasn't seen for that reason. We then went to get our outboard and much to our disappointment, it hadn't arrived yet. We went to Pizza Son on the Malecon for pizza last night with Kris and Adam. It was pretty good. Rates higher than Rin Rin and lower than Pizza Pezzi.
Kristina and I went for a final provisioning run at Soriana. I bought
several cases of liter boxes of juice, milk, red and white wine and a few
fruits and veggies. Yes, I can get 1 liter box wines here for $22pesos
each or about $2.50US. It is basically a California table wine and
both are more palatable than some of the more expensive chilean wines I
had resorted to buying out of economy. It is also much easier to
store the little boxes than worrying about glass breaking and the odd stowage
locations because of long necked bottles. Jamie just checked an our
outboard is STILL not here. We are all ready to go now. We
stowed most of the provisions again this afternoon. Now we await
our new toy.
On Thursday we did more moping, I spent a good portion of the day cleaning up and stowing. It was hot hot hot all day. I went to Boraes and had a coffee visit with Mandy and Vien instead of going to the Women's luncheon. They have a/c at the marina and that was better than any walk in the sun for lunch. We spent more time at the internet cafe and I returned around 5pm for another awesome cucumber sandwich and cold lemonade. Jamie accidentally downloaded a real beauty of a virus and returned home at 11pm having removed most of it.
Another day, high hopes. The store said our outboard made it to Ensenada and may be here by the evening. Jamie went to the internet cafe again to finish getting rid of the virus and I did some more stowing. I finally found a place for all provisions and loose items that like to launch themselves across the boat. In the afternoon Jamie and I went to get the outboard and we were given a ride from the store at 6pm with our shiny new toy. Of course, we had to put it on the dinghy right away and run hot laps around the harbor. Adam and Kris hopped in and we went to La Fonda for celebration dinner. I had an awesome greasy pile of queso fundido which is fried cheese. It had chorizo, a greasy spicy sausage and peppers and onion and garlic. You scoop it up with a fork and plop the blob into a tortilla, roll it up and chow down. Awesome! We ran into Casey, Mandy and Vien after dinner and walked downtown for ice cream. Great night. We were on a happy high.
Saturday could have been a bright and early departure, but we decided to err on the side of caution, stock up on a 3 mo. supply of meds for Adrian and a little more cash for the cruising kitty. We spent a little of our summer money with some last minute "got to haves". We departed La Paz after signing out from Marina de La Paz and noticed we were only moving 2-2.5 kts and talked ourselves into thinking it was the tide coming in. The wind picked up and we motor sailed for awhile at 4 kts. When the wind died and we were passed by 3 boats who were behind us, we realized that we must have a virtual reef on our propellor and hull. We spent our first night out in an anchorage called Lobos, just north of Pichilinque, a favorite La Paz hurricane hole. We anchored pretty close to shore (that means too close). While I watched the depth, Jamie hopped in and started cleaning the barnacles off the prop and upper hull.
Jamie got out of the water and started making funny yelps and ouches. He had just bathed and thought he'd washed out all the hull cooties, but low and behold, he forgot the beard. It was hysterical. There were hundreds of baby krill or shrimp in his beard. After another dunking and then a repeated bucket rinse, we finally got rid of them. In the midst of all this, a nice powerboat, The Cat's Meow, came into the harbor and anchored blissfully unaware of Jamie's dancing nudity. I was cracking up. I don't think Jamie found it nearly as entertaining. We had a nice simple one pot dinner of rice, corn, canned lamb and various spices. It was quite good.
Now, the dumb part. We were sure that the anchor hadn't set properly and we were in very shallow water. Ignoring common sense, we stayed where we were and set an anchor and depth alarm. They started going off the first time at 3am. We had 3.5 feet under the keel. We were awakened several times to anchor grumbles and mad dashes to an open hatch to check that we were in the same place. What is wrong with us??? We never do anything this stupid. So, did we pull in the chain and move? No. At 5am the alarm went off because there was 1.5 feet below the keel. I wanted to leave. Jamie did not. I got grumpy and went back to bed and told him to find friends to help if we went aground.
We got up and departed Lobos by 9am. The day got much better. We had a nice sail to Partida Cove on Isla Partida. It is located between two islands and has a sand shoal with a narrow windy dinghy passage between the two. We anchored and Jamie took the dinghy in to the beach to clean the bottom and paint it. I stayed at the boat. I had residual grumps and was still sore from lack of sleep the night before. In the afternoon we gave some fisherman 5gal. fresh water. That is a lot of water from our perspective. In return, they said they'd bring us a fish from tomorrow's catch. We did an afternoon "dinghy snorkel" of the channel between the islands and toured the various inlets as the sun went down. There were some pretty cool looking caves on the NW side of the cove. We chatted with some charter boats and called it a night.
Monday was beautiful. It was nice and breezy. We were both in the water cleaning and scraping the hull by 10am. I was out by noon and started fixing some soup. Jamie grilled a couple hot dogs and that was it. We lounged our afternoon away, and we were given a fish from the fishermen. They filleted it for us. Two 10 inch fillets. That was dinner, by the way.
Today we were off the hook by 8am, stowed and stoked to see new places. We had a 5.5-6.5 kt sail and arrived in Isla San Francisco by 1pm when the wind had nearly died. We were in our suits and snorkelling as soon as the hook was set. We saw lots of great corals and fish. Upon our return to the boat, we had naps and woke to bees. We were under attack by bees desperate for the sweets in lemonade cups and water from the tap. It became unbearable and up came the anchor, off we go. We spent and hour motoring to Isla San Jose, and are now anchored in Bahia Amortada. It's calm, quiet, light breezes. We are looking forward to snorkeling at all the reefs in the surrounding area tomorrow.
We had the Idefix's over for dinner tonight and everyone had a good time. Elliot tried playing the horn and the trumpet, as well as, raiding Adrians toy locker for something to keep the boys from getting bored while the adults talked. They finally landed on Monopoly. At the end he was asking to borrow the game. I can't understand kids fascination with Monopoly. We are leaving for Chico Candelero in the morning. Hopefully, it won't be filled up with boats.