Sailing Mango

At Anchor, Finally

Today was another rough day in La Cruz. The sound of a certain boy trying to coerce certain dogs into his bunk woke me around 6:30. It made me smile to listen to his attempts, but around 7:00 I took pity on the poor boy and invited him into my bunk next to Kristen, while I got up and got coffee going. Sunrise is right around 7ish, so it is a good time to poke your head around and great the morning.

What made this morning especially difficult was my vow to not surf news sites and Facebook. It has gotten too depressing. So I suffered through a few cups of coffee in the salon, snugged up to a wonderful poodle and a blanket, some excellent Mexican granola, and surfed craigslist for our next boat.

Naturally we wouldn't buy something right a way, maybe in a year or three, but one must be prepared with an extensive knowledge of the local market and typical boat prices. When a suitable boat does come on the market for more than a fair price, well then we will be able to act quickly and decisively. It's all logic my friends! Surf for an hour and a half daily for a few years, and then buy the right boat at the right time. Exactly. Yeah... Well I guess they don't call it boat porn for nothing.

At 10 am or so I was up, preparing the boat for an early (cough) departure from the dock and into the anchorage. The winds pick up in the afternoon, so it pays to get going early for less stressful anchoring. So Emma and I walked to the yacht club for a shower, had some coffee and pay de quiso, a less rich version of cheesecake, picked up our propane tank, and tried to pay for our thirteen days of moorage. My credit card was declined. It was likely I had just gotten an email asking if the transaction was valid, but I didn't have my phone, so I had to walk back to the boat, then back to the office, half a kilometer each way. It turns out I was using the wrong card, one that had been compromised about two months ago. On the plus side I picked up brochures for a zip lining joint, so we will see.

After this little adventure, I walked into town for tortillias at the tortillaria, beer and ice at the little local market, and then back to the boat, where it was about 2:00 pm. It can be a little tough to get the ball rolling in Mexico, with day after day of clear skies and hot sun. Actually really hot sun. The boat is smokin' by noon, and doesn't really cool off until after sundown, despite our best efforts at shading the boat.

We finally got moving, maybe 2:30, maybe 3:00. For the first time in a while we had difficulty getting out of the slip. Kristen got the boat moving forward, but there was some confusion about dock line releasing, and a stern line went into the water, which is never good since it could wrap the prop and kill our engine. The afternoon winds pushed us towards the docks as Kristen quickly shifted to neutral. We made it out OK, but it was a little frantic for a few seconds.

Surprisingly, our anchoring was executed in a very seaman like manner. We had ample time to discuss the location to anchor and approach, waved to a few boats, powered into the 15 knot winds, dropped the hook, let out the chain, set snubbers, backed her down, and boom!, we were anchored. Kristen broke out the obligatory beer, a can of salsa and some fresh chips, and it was fiesta time.

It has taken us three days to get out of the marina. Each day we end up tired and beat, right around 4:00 pm, and we decide to wait another day. Just yesterday for example, after throwing in the towel for a departure, but with a successful oil change earlier in the day, we decided to shower up and enjoy hand tossed $5-$7 dollar a pie pizza, made right at the pool outside of the yacht club by a local couple who come in on Wednesdays.

I tell you, cruising life is hard, and more than a little sweaty

This is a yummy local restaurant, but a bit pricy.

This is a door to a restaurant that is no longer in business. After speaking with a person who used to run a restaurant, apparently the market is tough. There are only four real months of decent business, and it is dead the rest of the year.

This is pretty typical. Mexico is a land of fix, not buy. So tires for dectoration is fine, with a bit of garbage thrown in.

A nice house, so it seams at least, hidden behind a gate and a lot of vegetation.

This picture is plain, but intriguing to me. A chain link fence encloses a burned out building, while the yachts in the yard, opulent and modest, get repaired and worked on. There seem to be more than a few unoccupied buildings in town.

Dead center you can just barely make out Mango. We had been on the service dock for more than a week, and we liked it. The only other boats around were pongas and small sport fishing boats. No one stayed after dark, so we would regularly run the dogs on the docks at night until they were tired. It was a bit like being at anchor, no one around, the dogs weren't going too crazy, and it was sort of quite, even with the fishing pongas right across from us.

Finally, at anchor. It feels good. It feels very good.