Still Sailing Mexico's Pacific| filed under: Sailing Mexico, Sailing with Mark, Zihuatanejo, Mexico
20-days into the Sail and we have only gone from Acapulco to Zihuatenejo to Las Hadas, Manzanillo. Many more miles to go. From Club de Yates de Acapulco to Rick's Bar to Dolphin rapists to gorgeous Las Hadas, oh my.
Kinship II is anchored right outside the hotel made famous in the film, 10. It is probably one of the prettiest marinas and certainly the most stunning resort I have ever laid eyes upon. Its called Las Hadas. In Manzanillo.
This travelogue will not discuss much about where I am now, because that is still unfolding, but it should get my trip better up-to-date
We arrived after spending over three days at sea. Most of the journey was delightful. We had spent a couple days in a little charming bay called Zihuatanejo after having dropped Carolina and a crow bar off at Rick's Bar, a famous -- amongst the Cruisers -- bar and information center that really is the juice for this expat 40s-70s land of joy and peace.
We met Carolina at the Club de Yates de Acapulco because she was crying and down to her last 25 pesos and was schlepping a ton of crap -- a dive bag and whatnot, including what we discovered later to be family photos, a CD collection, etc. So we took pity on her and illegally smuggled her from Acapulco to where she was supposed to be, which was in Zihua.
She was going to be travelling with her friend Joe in his 36-foot Beneteau called Music. Gorgeous boat and to boot, Joe retired from Maxis, the purveyors of SimCity, SimAnt, The Simms, etc. Sadly, its not Maxis any more, its Electronic Arts. RIP.
She was (and is I guess) a dolphin trainer who spends much of her year living in Winnepeg. In Canada, she is Carolyn, but in Puerto Vallarta she is Carolina.
She shared stories about how the dolophins can help cure autistic children, how dolphins can allow children with developmental disabilities to thrive and grow. She also told us that the rumors are true: Dolphins are pervy masturbators! Dolphins are sexual predators!
Female dolphins will take you down if you try to mess with their menfolk! So, although your entire spiritual life might change -- you might enjoy in your sentient exploration on this planet a great leap of trust, faith, understanding, tranquility -- beware the pod of dolphins because they act more like the Crips and the Bloods! They will cut you if you take their men, bitch! They will gang up on you and take from you your innocence, your flower! Beware the wilding porpoise. Is that a bottle on your nose or are you happy to see me?
Wow, who would have known? I have spent many water hours with dolphins, but I guess I am just not their type. Don't like the manly man, maybe.
So we like Carolina because the moment she got on board she looked around and said, "this is a boy boat and needs a woman's touch" and proceeded to start cleaning the cabin and around the hulls and even mustered some elbow grease and scrubbed out both of our heads.
When we delivered her -- and a huge crow bar left behind in the engine compartment of a boat in Acapulco, owned by a mechanic in Zihua -- we were able to convince Rick's that we deserved free beer and Joe that he should buy us dinner. Actually, that's a lie, he offered.
These boaters are rabid and now I can see why San Fran is the way it is with the Well and all the community events and action. These boaters are really into their pot luck we are all one hive mentality. Gorgeous folk, anyway. Most of these cruisers are the success stories from Latitude 38, which is the "insider" lingo for San Francisco.
They do have lots of fun and the Friday night we were there, we enjoyed Open Mic night which consisted of a bunch of 60s and 70s hippies and rockers reliving their amazingly easy to play music. From the Beatles to Baez, from James Taylor to Crosby Still & Nash.
When we finally were able to pull ourselves away, we were in love. Our first experience was awful and Zihua really came across as being super-sterilized for the touristas, but since we had to stay an extra day to be able to complete a screwed up harbor capitan check in/check out, we gave it Friday night.
And Friday night was all it took. We anchored the cat in the clean part of the bay where all the cruisers anchored, so to make it to town, we had to buzz the little dink quite a spell. And when we arrived at the little municipal pier, we discovered a dozen other dinks pulled ashore, already at Rick's.
That was the night be thought it was pretty Disney, but the following night and for the rest of our time there, we were really very charmed. In fact, both Mark and I fell in love with this gorgeous couple and their little girl. So young, so happy, so beautiful! Ladies, this would be a great time to land Mister Harrison as I think this trip got his biological clock a-tickin'. It certainly has me missing Wendy something awful. Although not remotely able to replace touch and proximity, thank god for the internet, ubiquitous Inernet Cafes, and my GSM world phone, which has recently broken but has not worked since we left Acapulco.
Mark shaved his head, so in Zihua I did as well; although, in the next couple weeks that I am down here, my hair should be back in full. Actually, I didn't shave it, but I asked the barber to crop it down using attachment number 1, which for many of you who can't stop dating servicemen, service boys, Marines, Rangers, Special Ops, and what not, can easily get a bead on what a number 1 attachment is. Yeah, that's me all over. I have a tanned pate.
In fact, I am nut brown all over. Well, not that all over.
Before we left we had a movie night with the generator on. We watched Creature Comforts and Schindler's List. Eating the everpresent guacamole (why so expensive in the US, this avocados?) and the night in. We also did some freediving. I brought my freediving fins and my low-volume mask. So Mark and I got into the agua mala-infested waters and cleaned the keel, rudder, and the lower hull. Although I didn't teach, Mark learned and by the end, he learned all of my tricks. I did get down to the bottom, which was only 40 feet. There was a severe thermocline which started with the brackish water of the warm 75-degree surface, down to 10 feet, then into a murkey water of 70-degrees, and finally to a clear green (like lime jello) water from 30 feet to the muddy bottom.
The tricks? Don't kick if you don't have to. always try to hold on to something. Don't fight because if you have to struggle, you are doing something wrong. If you need to, stay inverted. There's more, but that's the gist.
When we finally left, the seas looked good as did the report. When you are making multi-day passages, things get kind of fuzzy between the days and nights. Its very important to make sure someone is always awake, but since this is not based on time but timing, the three days that passed were a blur.
Lucky thing was we found some wind and towards the end of our journey to Manzanillo, we found more than enough wind. In fact, by the time we tucked into Las Hadas, we were fighting 25-40 knots of wind and 10-15 foor seas. Luckily, Kinship II is a 42-foot enclosed seafaring goddess and we didn't even have a hint of trouble nor even worry. We were just tired of the high seas. Mind you, its only because neither Mark nor I got even remotely seasick. Now, that would have sucked.
Anyway, more later. Lots of love!