Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Who's are these?

We walked down the beach here at Ensenada Grande and were intrigued to have found some wee little paw prints. They dont look like dog, cat or chipmunk prints so we are puzzled. I wonder...

Too big-a bite?

As we kayaked around we saw something awesome. A Great Blue heron was on the rocks abeam from the boat. We paddled toward it and it flew in front of us a bit, landed and jabbed its big pointy beak into the water. When we got closer we saw that it had seriously wounded a fish, but the fish was too far out for it to reach. After a few failed attempts at grabbing it the heron watched us come closer, but it did not want to leave its meal. We used the paddles to push the fish closer to the bird and we backed off. The heron quickly jumped in and grabbed the fish. The fish was meal sized. I say 3 lbs, but David thinks smaller. Either way it was too heavy for the bird to fly with so we stuck around to watch. "He cant eat that whole. He's got to break it into pieces," Says David. I say, "It's going down in one bite." So we watch. The fish squirms and the heron drops it and plunges its beak through the whole fish! It stabs the fish a few times until it doesn't squirm any more. We watch intently as the heron lines up the fish and eats the whole thing in one bite! It took a minute or two to get it all the way down where we could see the fish stuck in its neck slowly working its way down. It was amazing! Check out the picture and keep in mind that the heron is about 4 feet tall. The fish doesn't look small to the size of the bird!
The following morning we decided to go back to the beach and hike on the trail a bit more. We worked our way through the path weaving between cactus, scrubby brush and the occasional bush festooned with gigant-o wasps. We were rewarded many times for our efforts. First we came upon a couple chipmunks, but they scurried under a low bush. We have found that they are set at ease rather quickly. If we stand still long enough they come back out and resume going about their business of being cute furry little things. I watched one female come out of the bush and hop on a rock facing me about 7 feet away. She watched me and must have decided I wasn't a threat because she went on to do the cutest thing. She went under an overhanging bush limb, dug for a second with fore paws then shoved her face into the dirt, pushed forward with her snout until she was laying in a small ditch stretched out on her stomach and pretty vulnerable. We didn't know if its a mating thing, a way to cool down or a "look how cute I am" display. Either way it was pretty funny. Meanwhile some little birds were chirping and fluttering around so I decided I would quietly make my way over to them. It was a damn good thing that I was looking where I was going because nestled between two rocks less than three feet away was a rattlesnake. Though it couldn't have been more than two feet long, I know the last thing we want is a bite from one. David came over with his walking stick and stretched the snake out a bit which was cool until it doubled back and came towards us. With David's guidance (or poking it with a stick) it moved to the shade under a large shrub. That got my adrenaline going!

We doubled back towards the mangroves since we saw some little birds in the trees. David watched a warbler while I snapped some photos of the Black-throated sparrows. Once I headed over to investigate the bird David was watching I found another surprise...another snake. This one was in the tree on a branch looking ready for any food to come its way. I am not too familiar with types of snakes, but David says it looked like a Garter snake. I still wasn't going to stick my fingers anywhere near it though. We left the snake to do its thing and went back towards the lagoon and found some fiddler crabs to bother.

We are in our happy place or Ensenada Grande

We hustled out of La Paz after realizing that the internet was down and had no eta for being brought back to life. We set out to the islands not sure exactly where we would call it in. It was an overcast day, which was nice for a while, but the sun craving in me wasn't satisfied. The wind was pretty much non-existant so we motored on. David made some phone calls as La Paz faded into the distance and managed to smack his foot wound on the auto pilot. Ouch. We thought we saw Sea Siren just outside Caleta Partida, but after a closer inspection we found it to be a New Zealand boat instead. We motored on and decided to set the hook in Ensenada Grande. There was already a crowd of sailboats most of which were Ha-Ha boats. The sunset painted the clouds reds, oranges and pinks making it one of the best yet. We played the night away drawing, watching Planet Earth and some No Reservations during a fettucinni alfredo dinner. We talked about going ashore before sun up for a jog (haha) and maybe a look around the beach.

We did wake up before the sun was on the bay and got to the beach before coffee and breakfast. There was a little lagoon that had a couple egrets dancing around trying to catch the quick little fish. The lagoon is surrounded by mangroves and I have learned where there are mangroves there are birds! We hiked on a trail for a ways back before coming across a cactus that I thought was the coolest thing. It was about four feet high and the spikes on the top were red with white tips. Lower on the cactus the spikes were yellow and black. I thought it was pretty cool, but I am a nerd. We turned back since the terrain started to get a little too much for David in flip flops with a bum foot. Back on the beach with enough poking and proding mixed with taunting, David got me to do my jog by running with me. After a morning workout we went back to the boat to wake up proper with coffee and food.

Around noon I blew up the kayaks and we took a paddle to the same beach we had been to earlier. I wanted, no...I NEEDED a picture of the cool cactus and whatever else decided to show up. As we walked along we were startled to see a furry little thing dart away from us and it was a chimpunk! Too damn cute. We didn't know they inhabited the islands out here. We found three different types of lizards, bright blue and yellow morning glories, more chipmunks, a couple little chirpy warbler sized birds and tons of dragonflies. I stood still hoping the birds would get closer and it worked. I took a few pictures and we were able to identify them. The one with a gray body, yellow hood and red spot on it's shoulder is a Verdin. The other little gray one is a Blue-gray gnatcatcher. I like to know that kinda poop and maybe you do too.

After the hike we paddled back to the boat to escape the sun. Unfortunately our shade has the magical ability to do very little shading. Once again David's genius was showing...he found a small and old spinnaker and rigged it so it shaded us. Imagine a boat with a spinnaker, Imagine that boat flying its spinnaker from the stern and thats what it looked like. We found our anchor was set firm and it worked for shade and bringing lots of wind to the cockpit. Of course the wind did pick up and it got a bit gusty so David dropped the chute and "suffered" through the heat of the persistant sun.

The rest of today has been pretty lazy really. We are preparing for dinner and on tonights menu: cheeseburgers with salad. The cat cries for food, my love tends to his nasty, scaly, no-longer-covered-by-a-blister scabby foot and I do the pre-blogging fun. We both have picked up books, but havent gotten too far yet as the scenery is distractingly beautiful. Ah, the pains of island life.

Enjoying the City of Peace

We got up early and listened to the "conspiracy net" (Obama was really born in Kenya, USA is at cyber war with China and someday there may be Ameruo as currency) before getting ready to go ashore for propane. It turned out we didn't need any propane, but we did still need to provision for our trip out to the islands. On our way back out to the dink with our groceries we ran into Jennifer and EriK from Ekotopia. We threw out our plans for dinner at Rancho Viejo and would be glad to have more company. It was agreed to go out after sundown for food, drinks and friends.

After some napping, relaxing, playing on the internet and cutting the blistered skin off David's heel we rallied and headed over to invite Patsy (Talion) to join up with us which she said she gladly would. We continued on our way in and knocked on the hull of the Jolly Roger and found out that Don was already at Rancho Viejo. We were on our way when we came across Jennifer and Erik in their car. We gladly hopped in and caught a ride to dinner. The four of us chatted and exchanged stories from traveling south to hacking through tough ribeye. Patsy and Don joined us soon after and the food got ordered. Eventually Patsy's new crew showed up and joined the growing party. It was a nice time to chat and eat in the warm night air. After dinner we decided to visit the polka dot tree which marks a favored cruisers ice cream parlor. While we were there there were a couple of young people were walking around with signs for "Abrazos Gratis" or "Free Hugs". We gladly took them up on the hugs and started our own free hugs within our little group. It was a great night with great people.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Happiness is forgetting to put your pants on or How David achieved Cruisers Nirvana

We got up by sun up and got the boat all ready to get moving. We tied the kayaks down to the lifelines, hoisted the sails and sailed off the anchor. Well, the wind did die a few seconds later so we started to motor sail. We waved good bye to all of our new friends and were on our way to Balandras.

We putted along looking into anchorages we passed by so we might find our amigos on Sea Siren, but no dice. David noticed a little lagoon behind one of the anchorages so we decided to stop for lunch and check it out. We ate and got the yaks in the water. As we loaded up the water, shoes and camera David untied his kayak and I asked, "What about your pants?" That my friends, is cruiser nirvana...not needing you pants enough so eventually they are forgotten.

Yes we paddled on and had to climb over dried coral with yaks slung on our shoulder all done with David bare assed. I managed to kill my flip flop so I had to launch in a different spot to avoid walking on the glass like coral. In the lagoon there were tons of herons, egrets, frigates, pelicans and even a couple ospreys. It was a pretty nasty (water wise) lagoon, but the bird life was still amazing. We paddled for an hour or so before trying to find an alternate route to the boat that hopefully had less coral to walk over. Success. We hobbled our way over the rocks me with one shoe and David with no shorts. He tossed me his flip flop so I could go over the one coral spot and I tossed it back before launching. Its always an adventure.

We sailed on once again. We arrived at Balandras and were greeted with 15 boats already anchored. We decided it was too crowded so we checked out Bahias Lobos and Falsa before just going on to La Paz.

We dropped the hook, got the computers up and running and got blogging. David inflated the dink and we went inshore for a yummy HOT pizza at Pizza Son.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Bocci! and all things fun

We slept in till seven or so before getting a move on. David got to cleaning the lifelines and all things stainless. I finished reading Cannery Row, which to my surprise was pretty good. After a dip in the "pool" we launched the kayaks and paddled around. First we stopped at a cave that appeared to be small from a distance, but once approached it was quite sizeable. We could paddle into it and maneuver around. Neato. We continued along the smoothed pink rocks to the next anchorage area and saw a nice sandy white beach. We landed the kayaks and walked the shoreline. Some people playing what seemed to be an overhand version of bocci ball said hello. We chatted and soon disrupted the game meeting Emily and Josh from Ursa Major (a badass powerboat with a laser 2 aboard) and Shawn and Heather from Om Shanti...the book people. After chatting we soon found out the drunkeness of the group. Wow, we had some serious catching up to do. We mingled and gladly joined the next game of bocci. Amidst the ball tossing we visited the fiddler crabs. They are too cool! The males have one big claw and it is ridiculously large for their small size. I found a pet "Mr. Krabs" and held him while we played. Though I did let him go after a couple tosses of my ball. After winning (Josh and I were on a team) we called it quits temporarily. We were to rendezvous at Ursa Major for steaks and cocktails if there were any survivors from the rum coma. We paddled back to our boat, maybe the slowest to get to the boat, but we had the most fun. We rammed each other and all sorts of other deviant things to try and stall eachother.

Once safely back aboard Eupsychia, David made bread and we cleaned ourselves up a bit. By sunset we paddled over to Ursa Major to find a sleepy Josh and non-existant Emily. She was too pooped to party so we kept it down and got to the steaks fast. Soon we heard the approaching of a dink and to our surprise it was Shawn. He joined us and Emily soon rallied. It was quite a nice night over steak and cocktails.

With a day of sun, fun and full bellies it is time to lay down for sleep. We should be headed to Balandras tomorrow aka just north of La Paz. We will see! Nighty night!

Breakfast of Champions and Ensenada Grande

We decided to skip dinner last night in exchange for a "healthy" sized breakfast. David fried up some potatoes with cilantro and I made the eggs and toast. A good team breakfast. After much debating i.e. H:"Do you wanna hike or go whale watching?" D:"I dunno, whatever you wanna do." H:" I asked you first." D:"Uh, I dunno. What about you?" We decided on the least taxing after a big meal, whale watching. We reversed roles with David hoisting sails and me at the helm. We sailed off the anchor and out of the anchorage. We had a nice calm sail for a couple hours with no luck. Finally we did see some spouting, but they managed to disappear before we caught up to them. No problem. We continued on our sail to Los Islotes and then back towards Partida. David relieved auto pilot of the helm and took us into Ensenada Grande. The last time we were here it was absolutely breathtaking, but I was a little unsure this time. I mean the last time we were here we got mobbed by bees and I got stung by a jellyfish...not very inviting. This time was different. We were welcomed with big loving arms made from white sand beaches and clear water. We sailed onto a good spot and dropped the hook. Another free sail. I looked around and recognized a boat here as "Om Shanti" which is the boat of Shawn Breeding and Heather Bansmer who wrote the new and popular "Sea of Cortez A Cruiser's Guidebook". Which I thought was cool since we bought their book this year and have been using it all the time.

After all the tiding of the decks, sails and all that good stuff we got the kayaks in the water. Stocked with a couple beers, flip flops, water, sunscreen and a towel we hit the little rocky beach. We could have gone to the white sandy beaches, but we like shade and the little rocky beach had just that...SHADE! We had a lay down in the sand and David learned an important rule: Never siesta on the beach with your mouth open! Once we'd had enough shade we paddled around and some more. We did come home shortly after to escape the sun and heat. David, the genuis he is, decided to put up the sunshade. After all that work it gave us 0% shade. So David went ghetto and clipped a bunch of towels up, but it did the trick. It is in the mid eighties and should be cooling down soon, but right now things are as perfect as can be. I think I hear a pillow calling my name for an afternoon nap.

Ever been licked by a moth?

I have.


We got up early (thank you cat) and observed our serene, picturesque surroundings. The water was so still, not even a ripple on the surface. I grabbed my camera and started trying to take pictures of the rays that chill on the sandy bottom. There is a very cool looking ray that I named Bullseye beacause as you can guess it has a large bullseye like mark on its top side. Yes there are more than one, but they are all Bullseye. Why do I name them you may ask. Its easier to ask, "See Bullseye?" then to ask, "Do you see the ray with that bullseye marking on it around?" That is my reason, that and I like to name things. It entertains me. Anyways, we found Bullseye and a few others and snapped off some pictures. While I was taking a picture of Bullseye I watched it shimmy for two seconds and a cloud of sand surrounded the area and when it settled Bullseye was gone. I know they bury themselves, but it was so quick and I couldn't even see the bullseye itself. Jeez, no wonder David stepped on one! Quick and effective cover in seconds.

It is a little before 10am and my love is making bread. Yessss! We already have a fan on since its in the mid-eighties already. Not a bad way to start the day. I think we may yak over to a part of shore and hike a hillside for a bit. I am on the prowl for birds, lizards and snakes or whatever else we can find. We need to make sure our legs don't atrophy this cruising season so a hike will do us good as long as its before the peak heat of the day. We'd better get moving! We did not go hiking...too hot. I hopped in a kayak and paddled over to the bird island to take another couple hundred photos of terns, seagulls, American oyster catchers, whimbrels and an egret. I was probably gone 45 minutes or so before paddling back home. Later on after the bread was made and half devoured we kayaked to the north part of the anchorage. It was great to see so much more bird life. We saw an osprey dive a few times before coming up successful with a fish in its talons. There were little sanderlings, godwits, great blue herons and a snowy egret all meandering on the packed tidal sands. We watched a few more boats anchor and we paddled back to our quiet little spot.

Like moths to a flame

We got moving before 7:30am and got to the important things like the coffee, assembling the sunshade and hanging up the laundry. It was so cool to look off the side of the boat down to completely undisturbed, clear pool like (color and temperature) water and see all the different types of rays swimming along the bottom, the fish swimming over the rays and the teeny tiny tadpole like fish right by our hull. After all the morning hustle and bustle I inflated the kayaks so we could have a look around places too shallow for the dink. We paddled around for an hour and a half exploring. My favorite thing to do was paddle up to the reef towards the beach and drift while taking pictures of the Elegant Terns. They weren't frightened or annoyed on the contrary they were yawning and preening their feathers. David patiently waited for me to exhaust myself before we paddled through the little canal that opened up to the other side of the island. We turned back with the wind shift and made for the mother ship. We managed to paddle with the wind no matter the direction that we went which is always a good thing. Back to the boat for lunch and a nap to escape the noon time sun.

Another something that has nothing to do with anything previously mentioned: Anchoring in the masses. David and I are anchored in the South East part of the anchorage. At the moment there are 12 boats all in the Northern part of the anchorage. A big reason might be because the Charlie's Chart guide recommends anchoring there. Well, over on the south side we get the sunset and protection from the night time coroumels. David jokingly said,"Turn on the radio. They must be warning other boats not to anchor by the boat with naked people in the southern part of the anchorage." Hey maybe that is what does it. Would you park your car by a guy naked in his own ride? Probably not. I am entertained at the mob mentality of anchoring though. David and I were thinking of doing our own little study by going to an empty anchorage and finding a crappy place to anchor and wait and count the boats that would come and anchor around us. It would happen. Like moths to a flame.

Its 4:40pm and Maui is insisting that it is kitty feeding time though I know different. I keep trying to get her to read the clock right but no such luck. David is plopped down with a book to read and I will follow suit in a few minutes too. I guess that is all the updates for now, oh David's foot is still doing well. Still a nasty bubbly blister of clear fluid, but good otherwise. Time to finish another book and maybe feed the cat a couple minutes early so we can have some peace and quiet again.

Later on we had dinner. I tried my hand at tacos with ground beef, onions, jalapeños, lettuce, tomatoes, refried black beans and hand made masa tortillas. Success! David said it was the best taco he ever had. I would lke to think its true. After food and an episode of "Anthony Bourdain No Reservaions" we crawled into bed. We saw a bat fluttering around which was awesome because some of you may remember me telling you about Tyler, if not here's the story. We picked up a bat along the way down south last year. We heard his constant chattering every night no matter if we were out 100 miles at sea or bobbing in an anchorage. We never, not once, saw him even though he stayed with for about 5 months. He finally left us at Caleta de Campos where we heard many bats and saw some excellent caves to make a better home than a boat. I have to say I missed his annoyingly high pitched squeaks and when other bats came around later on we could tell by the pitch that is wasn't our Tyler. Tyler got his name from a dream I had when I matter of factly told someone that his name was Tyler. That is the story of Tyler, not all that exciting, but we were excited to finally see a bat this year after not seeing our own pet bat of 5 months last year.

As we were in bed we looked at the time, 8:30pm. Seriously? That is before cruiser midnight! We are so used to dining, digesting and going to bed that the time never occurred to us. No matter, we snuggled up and slept like logs through the night.

Caleta Partida bound!

David was hurrying me along so we could get going to the islands. We left La Paz around 10am and midway through the channel we saw Sea Siren. They had run out of beer and had to do an emergency provisioning trip to the super mercado. That was a lesson we never had to be taught the hard way. Always, always bring enough beer and rum when going asea. We said our temporary goodbyes and were on our way.

It was a relatively uneventful day. David was on watch for whales and dolphins, but no dice today. All we saw were shifty winds and a sea lion. I did some laundry and read a book (yay zombie novels) while we made our way to our new, but very familiar, anchorage of Caleta Partida. We made it to Caleta Partida by 5pm which is important if we are trying to evade that dreaded scurvy. We only get one cocktail while out at sea, but we are allowed two if anchored for the night. We sipped our drinks and observed our surroundings. Here comes my tangent: Now this is my personal feelings on the subject, but I wouldn't recommend bringing a cat cruising let alone a dog. I swore off cat cruising last season, but the fuzzball is still alive, well and in our possesion so she is cruising again. I am in no rush to get rid of her or anything like that, but once she is departed I will not take a furry thing (aside from David) along on a journey ever again. I bring this up because a boat about our size has a Doberman Pincher aboard. That is no little weenie small dog. This is a serious dog. I see only two upsides: 1) If Single handing and really in need of companionship 2) Make boat looters think second about looting your particular boat. I mean really, when people board our boat the think, "aww look at the cute kitty," but if you were to hop on a boat and see a full sized Doberman staring you in the face I would guess your first reaction wouldn't be "aww cute puppy". I digress, what I am getting at is that is a large dog for a small boat. I get annoyed with the 9lb fuzzy we have and he's got a 90lb fuzz! Wow that kind of blew my mind. Yes, yes blah blah blah I ramble on.

We are anchored in 10 feet of clear blue green water and watching the sun disappear behind the rocks that used to be part of a volcano. The rocks still show the blackness from the molten lava. The sky turned lavender and tangerine while the sea was deep purple. A thing of beauty every single day.

No fancy fish dinner tonight, but still one of my ghetto specialties...hotdogs! Mmmm. It was quite pleasing to the palate. Now with happy bellies and clean dishes (thank you David) it is time for a lay down. There is something so cool about being in bed and seeing Orion and the Big Dipper. No city lights to hide the natural brightness of the stars and moon. No ambulances drone out the sound of crickets and owls. I say it often, but I mean it LIFE IS SWEET!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

La Paz

We lifted the hook by 8am, dropped some beer off at Sea Siren as rations since they didn't provision proper tsk tsk, and on we went. It took four hours to get to La Paz under motor. We were on a mission...immigration. As soon as the anchor was set we got in the dinghy and headed ashore. We saw our good friends Wayne and Carol Capricorn Cat dining with Jim and Kent of Sea Level. We stopped by to say hello before darting down to the INS office. At INS we waited maybe five minutes before moving up to the window and starting the process that could have lasted hours. Luckily, the La Paz INS is competent and we were out of there in 45 minutes or less. We had to take a trip to the bank and pay for our visas which took another 15 minutes and we now we are legal! In Cabo the INS people were insisting on bribes of $20 a head and taking two and a half hours to get through one person. It may be just me, but I would think if I am paying a bribe that it should speed things up a little more not take longer.

Anyhow the next stop was the port captain's some 10 blocks away. Luckily we had run into the Jolly Roger crew earlier and they were headed there so when we saw them returning from the trip we were warned that the port captain doesn't wish to see anyone not checking out. Sweet. Don graciously invited us to have a beer at a little place on the malecon. We sat and chatted before seeing a sight that caught all of our attention. One girl was riding a bike, but on the back of the bike stood another chick. They were jamming along with perfect balance. Wait, we knew those girls! It was Samar and Alex from Sea Level. With a not so graceful dismount off the bike they joined our growing table. I saw the guy from Wind River. I introduced myself and filled him in about the Port Captain. He joined us for a beer too. Then came Kent and eventually Jim from Sea Level. It was a great time of chatting and some cold beer in the dry heat.

Though we all had to get moving for our own reasons we split off with Paul in search of Ken so we could go to the C.C.C. Colima for provisions. Once we were all united and in a cab off we went. David and I are very experienced in the way of provisioning for the most part. The two of us breezed through our list and got through the check out in record time. The Wind River guys took a bit longer, but it was all good. We were officially in no hurry now that we are done with the paperwork.

Back to the boat for a bit before gathering at Rancho Viejo for the best tacos...EVER. Really. We dined with Wayne and Carol and a guy named Eric also. It was great fun catching up with friends.

We are headed north to the islands so no net for a while. Updates and pics will come later!

Leaving Bahia De Los Muertos

It was a little bit of a restless night for me personally. I had the cat pestering me all night. I don't mean it cute either. She laid on top of my head before sniffing loudly in my ear followed with licks to the head and hair. I would say that is an improvement on taking claws to the face, but she was up and bouncing around all night so the possibility was there. Though mostly I was worried about David's stingray wound and the possible side effects. Early in the morning I rolled over and put my arm over his ribs and waited. No big breaths. I moved my hand to his side. He didn't stir. I moved my hand to his chest and asked,"Babe, are you ok?" He says,"I'm fine" wide awake. Later he tells me he was awake and felt me pawing around for signs of life, but wanted to wait and see what I was going to do. Creep. His foot has bubbled up into a nice blister thingy, but that may be from the water absorbed and/or the foot getting a bit burned from the hot water. He says it doesn't hurt at all which is good and amazing. He is a tough boy.

With a start of the day like that I was glad to grab a bit more sleep until the coffee was made and internet connection established. While we tootled around, ok, while David with his bum foot got the boat tidied up for departure I updated the blog. When I was done with all that we did the anchors aweigh thing and headed out to Cerralvo and the channel that would put us closer to La Paz. It was a pretty nice day of motorsailing for us. We prefer sailing, but that is precisely why we had to motorsail...battery power. We haven't properly charged the batteries since San Diego! The batteries still aren't fully charged, but they are happy for the moment. We made it through the channel on minimal tacks and got lifted all day. We made it to the next channel that always has ferry boats hustling through it. The Canal de San Lorenzo.

We had agreed to buddy boat with Sea Siren to Bahia San Gabriel for the day. We made it, but discussed amongst ourselves the possibility of the Corumel winds kicking in and the exposure of the bay. We decided to move a mile north to Ensenada la Gallina. The scenery of the rocks and landscapes are always beautiful to see as we headed to the new destination. After dragging anchor a few times we set the hook by moon light. We ventured to Sea Siren to chat, drink and nibble on some snacks. Not a bad place to be if you ask me.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Bahia De Muertos

Yes the name sounds grim and I asked a local why the name. He explained to me that a ship came in with a load of people that were all sick. Well they died and the ships people were buried in this bay. So that is the story of the name, but it doesn't end there. The people involved in marketing here now decided to change it to "Bahia de Sueños" that translates to "Bay of Dreams." To me that sounds way too bubblegum touristy, but whatever brings in the money for them is what works.

On to the events of getting here and while here: We left Los Frailes and had what our friends Cherie and Greg call a "free sail" meaning we sailed off the anchor, all day to our destination and then dropped anchor undersail. No motor. It was a great day of sailing with 15 kts gusting to 20. We made anchor by 6:3opm or so and slept after a pizza and beer dinner.

The next morning I look over to another part of the anchorage and saw our amigos on Sea Siren. We had tt go say hello. So we did bringing with us some vodka for bloody marys. Not a bad way to get the day moving though we had been up since 6:30am. We chatted and decided to go for a snorkel around 11:30am.

We had a brilliant time seeing all the corals, clams, tropical fish and everything in between. The big downside is while we were cleaning out the boat after we bashed back last season, we forgot to restock our fish books! So when/if someone comes to visit those 3 books would love to come down too!

Anyhow after that Dave, Judy and Bob off of Sea Siren decided to treat us to a drink. That is where it all went south...for a bit. David waded me inshore and then waded back out to anchor the dinks. David comes in bleeding at the foot with a puncture and a laceration. Someone forgot to do the "stingray shuffle". Yes David got nailed in less than a foot of water. Luckily we knew the treatment (soak the wound in water as hot as is tolerable for 30-90 minutes). David got a bit peckish and woozy, but our trooper survived. We will let you know how it progresses later on.

Off to Isla Espiritu Santu!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Los Frailes

We Departed from Cabo early Sunday morning along with many other boats. David worked hard and got the new auto pilot installed. You have no idea of the joy we felt when this new quiet, calm and steady tiller pilot took over. Almost tears of joy.

On we sailed towards Bahia Los Frailes (The Friars) for the night. We sailed with the main and spinnaker up for most of the way. The wind did die a couple miles from the bay, but we didn't mind. We'd had a warm blue day that clouded up on occasion. We started the motor and saw maybe 10 sailboats already anchored. We found a spot and settled in for a couple tummy warming Sundowners with our favorite contraband rum Havana Cubano. Mmmm mmm good. Though Los Frailes isn't more than 50 miles from Cabo, the peaceful (lack of jet skis) and inexpensive (since we won't get off the boat) blue wonderland is hardly inhibited. Lucky us.

By 9am it was in the 90's. We did the boat cleaning and project thing for a while before relaxing with much deserved beverage. The big project today was not the rewiring of the auto pilot or the scrubbing of the gally stove, but the shaving of the cat. She has been laying around like the useless lump of fur that she is. She sleeps a solid 22.5 hours a day and when she is not sleeping, eating or whining she is terrorizing us while sleeping. She seems to find it fun to leap from the top of the doghouse right onto a bladder, face, or anything else tender with her claws out and then she takes off running. Yes good morning indeed. Well there is a good way to get revenge while actually helping her as well and that is shaving her. She hates it with a passion though not enough to swim to shore. I am positive it cools her down really well, but annoying her is half the fun. The other half is looking at her and laughing since it looks like she has mange. Cats...

There are a few things I am proud of that I probably wouldn't have learned had I not been on a boat. One of them is my ability to tie a bowline, clove hitch and other knots with my toes. We found that out yesterday on the ride over. The other thing is that I am actually learning to cook. I find ingredients we have and toss together some kind of hybrid meal. Though David was raised well and pretty much eats everything put in front of him, he seems to enjoy my cooking. I am thinking of extending my cooking abilities and David is the best guinea pig for the job. So maybe if you folks come down to visit I will have thrown together a menu of available breakfasts, lunches and dinner.


We wont get into the details, but as you can imagine there were great parties, good food and even better friends. Over all it was pretty standard...for us at least. We had a couple nights on the town before the final awards night. The awards were goofy fun and we even managed a special award. Surprise, surprise we won the Naked Sailing Award. We don't need no stinking tan lines! Life is good.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Leg 3: Santa Maria to Cabo

We had the earliest start yet at 7am. We untied from the J and were on our way once again. There was good winds from the start. We hoisted sails and threw our lines out. We were able to use/give all of our previous wahoo up so we were ready for more.

We napped, sailed and fished for most of the day. We lost a lure or two in the process, but no worries. I took a nap and David woke me up to say I had a fish on. He said he'd pulled it in earlier and it looked to be a small wahoo. It wasn't small. Wahoo just look small in the water we realized when we pulled in a wahoo two inches shorter than the first. David did the slice and dice and we had a yummy fettucini alfredo with wahoo for dinner.

We sailed through the night doing our typical 2 hour watches. It was a fairly uneventful night except for the morons that almost hit us even though we had rights. Whatever, we all survived unscathed though with higher heart rates. The following morning we crossed the final finish line and a few hours later we were anchored in the bay. We made it!