Tuesday, November 11, 2008

We are in PV

After 4 and 1/2 days of travel time we are in PV. Our total time was 6 days in transient, including 2 days of rest in Mazatlan. While in Mazatlan during the day we rested by the pool, swam in the warm water and around the man made caves at El Cid Resort. In the evenings we walked and ate at outdoor restaurants. One night we were able to attend a free Japanese drum concert, GOCCO Magig Taiko Drummers, which was similar to the group STOMP. It was a great evening of entertainment spent with Lady Hawk and three new cruising friends.

We left Mazatlan with the intention of only going to the southern end of town and resting, just a three hour trip of slow sailing. Well plans change and we decided since we were going forward, we would just keep going. The time was right and we could arrive in San Blas about 10:00 in the morning. We had a fantastic sail with wind 10 to 15 out of the northwest all day and night. When we were abreast of San Blas Helen reminded me of the no see um problem around a full moon, and it was 2/3 to 3/4 so we kept going. We arrived in Punta Mita at 3:00pm sailing almost the whole way, 140 miles. Punta Mita is a resort destination with palapas, condos, golf course, and hotels just north of Puerto Vallarta. We noticed right away the lush green hillsides and the emeral green grass and found ourselves thinking we truly are in the tropics again. Pulling into the anchorage we recognized the yellow jib sail of our friends Lou and Laura on Cirque and the boat of another friend, Andrew on Amizade. Then when we were were on a dinghy ride we found two people waving to us from their balcony--Gilly and John from Destiny were in their condo. It was our faded green motor standing out that helped them recognize it was Jammin'. FYI: The green faded motor will be change to bright yellow this next week to color coordinate with our kayak and gas cans--Helen is redecorating as she is running out of sewing projects! So, if you see a school bus yellow motor it should be us behind the throttle. It feels so right to be with fellow sea mates and living the easy life again. Our biggest concern is what time zone are we in and when should we move the clock time since we really don't need to know the time till this Saturday to pick up our daughter and son-in-law?

Our total trip was 585 miles. The first leg nonstop was 445, the furthest non stop so far for the two of us. It was a great sail and after the third night we were getting into the groove. Our next similar distance will be from Mexico to Costa Rica, sometime in February.

We didn't catch another fish once were outside of Guaymas. I am not sure if it was the distance off shore or what. Coming into Mazatlan we had to avoid 6 or more drift nets just floating on top of the water. They had a plastic milk jug or clear pop bottle every 200 yards. The line they use is 1/4 floating yellow poly line. Almost impossible to see till you are on top of it. Two of the lines we found were over 2 miles long maybe even more as we are not sure at what point we found them. You have to just keep following them till they end. Going over the top of these would really ruin our day, and cause potential damage to our prop and shaft. We are so lucking we didn't encounter these at night. They are almost impossible to see even in the day light. No flags, no markers, nothing to help navigate around them. They seem to be within about 15 miles of shore in about 50 meters or less of depth. Twice panga fishermen came roaring towards us and cut us a path to avoid danger and save their lines. They were catching fish, we may have been fishing just too deep. We tend to stay further off shore as normally there is less to worry about.

We will now be in this area waiting for Kelsey and Jeromy to arrive on Saturday. They will be here for two weeks after which we will move south.

It is in the high 80's during the day and mid 70's at night. Doesn't get much better. I am glad we made a fast trip since the strong northern winds have already started to blow in the Sea of Cortez.

Life is great.

Dave and Helen

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Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Back home on the water

We are finally back on the water and heading south. We had a great time on land seeing all our family and friends, and a few new ones as well. The time spent in College Station and DC, visiting both Mike and Kels, will give us memories to last a long time. I think we will be in a few memories as well. Meeting their friends reminds us of our younger years as well. We are very proud of the choices in friends and the lives our children have chosen.

We would like to thank all of you who let us park our RV in their driveways and front yards. The visits and story swapping we had over a FEW evening drinks will be thought of often. I wish we could have spent more time with all of you, but between Helen's working and needing her sleep our visiting was cut down. The times we did have were special and will give us evening conversations for the whole year. We will enlighten those we meet about the HAB theory and other intellectual topics started but certainly not finished. Seeing the Beavers actually win a good game and being able to see all our college friends in one tailgate party helped to reconnect with old friends. Thanks for the many Happy Hour times spent together.

While we were home two of our close friends lost parents. It reminded us about how fragile life is and how getting old does have some serious draw backs. Linda, we are sorry we missed your father's funeral. He and your mom were so great and I still remember visits with them. Craig, the time I spent with you, your family, and mom before she passed on was very meaningful to me. Your mom and you have always been a very important part of our lives and we were glad we could share those last days with you both.

Thanks to all for just being there for us when we were back in the Northwest.

Ok, here we are "Back in the water, again" (sung to the tune of "Back in the saddle, again").
We are on the third day of 445 mile passage to Mazatlan. WE should be there some time tomorrow morning. To help pass the time we have been fishing and caught 3 Dorados, one Sierra, and three skip jack tuna (those we released). All accomplished in the first two hours so we then moved on to reading books. Two books down, and about 175 to go! We are eating fresh Mahi Mahi on the BBQ (which can't be beat) on a smooth rolling sea. The weather has been disappointing. We had hoped for a nice northern breeze to push us along to the south, but the wind decided to change to the south and provide no help this whole trip. In the pass three days we have seen three boats. It is a lot different than cruising the populated northwest. We are on our way to PV to meet Kelsey for a two week holiday. It will be a blast. It is so nice to be back on the water in the gently, and sometimes not so gentle, swells and waves.

It took 8 long, hot, dirty days putting the boat back together. We were planning on living in the motor home while we worked on the boat, but two days after we arrived in Guaymas we had to leave because hurricane Norbert was on the way. I wanted to stay and just point the motor home into the wind and ride it out. I said it couldn't be much different than going down hill at 75 into a headwind. That's something we can only do downhill by the way. Helen (who was checking out bus schedules north)and common sense won out and we left the day of the storms arrival. It actually went ashore just south of us so no damage was incurred by the boat but by then we were on our way to Texas to leave the motor home there. Once we came back we were stuck on the boat in a dusty, hot, bug infested yard with a lot of work to get done and no air conditioning at night to help with our aches and pains. The boat was cover with a heavy layer of dust, dirt and other sorts of grime which had to be clean before we could even start putting the boat back together. I don't know if we will ever leave the boat in a place like that for such a long period of time. I have to give a a lot of credit to Helen for putting up with me and those conditions for over a week. I must really be loved!!

Now that we are on the water and moving I am sure those memories will slowly vanish from our thoughts (like child birth pains fade) and new one will start replacing them. Last year we came down pet less and acquired a few temporary ones in our toilet bowl--a baby squid swam in as well as a fish...Well, this year we are pet less again and today our first pet flew in. We are 18 miles off shore and Dave felt something crawling up his back. When it reached his shoulder and came forward he could see it was a 6 inch wing span moth! Excited to record this first pet he went below to get the camera, with the moth following him in the air--Dave though he looked hungry as well as tired. A picture of the moth in our kitchen will be posted later on our blog.
I will try to do a better job of updating the blog. Sometimes our daily lives just seem to roll into each other and I just forget. Hope everyone is well. I love the description our friends on Wandering Star gave our life style, "It's like Spring Break for seniors." You have the sun, surf, stars, meeting new people, sharing fun times, and living totally in the present time--whatever time zone that may be...we aren't sure what time or day it is right now. Thank goodness for the lower right corner on the computer which give us the correct day at least.

Life is great; enjoy it now. It is also short and unpredictable.
Dave and Helen

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