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This IS retirement
How do I survive?
Gabriellas grandpa
01/16/2010, Barra de Navidad

I'm finally in Barra, one of my all time favorite places to hang out. While in Mazatlan during Christmas I was going to bake cookies. I started with mixing the iingredients and discovered I had no eggs. The local tiendas didn't have them either and I had to go beggiing at restaurants. My next door neighbor said I could use his bike and off I went down the docks. I was almost at the ramp when the air pump that attaches to the frame came lose and somehow dropped into the spokes of the front wheel. The wheel stopped instantly and over the front wheel I came flying. One of the berthers saw me do the flip and was sure I was injured. I jumped on the bike and kept going....I had to get the eggs. The girls in the office really liked my cookies. Sailed down to San Blas and decided to haul out of the water to take off my folding prop and put on a three bladed prop. The folding prop vibrated too much to make it the rest of the season. Had a successful prop change and went on to Chacala for some good food in the palapas on the beach. Going ashore, I beached the dinghy in the little cove where there isn't too much surf running. I walked over to some rocks to wash my feet off and put on my sandals. I stepped up on the rock(that was slime covered) and went sailing up in the air and down hard on the rock. I hit my hip real hard and my wrist also. I thought for sure I broke my hip(age and all), but it was my wrist that was the problem. To this day it is still a little painful and it is hard sailing a boat with one hand. I think I better start using the wonderful birthday present Gabriella got me this last year. It's an inflatable harness from West Marine. Left Chacala after only one night and sailed up around Punta de Mita into Banderas Bay. It was one of those glorious days of pure beauty and accomplishment. I was thanking my Lord out loud for letting me do what I do in retirement. Stayed in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle for about four days. Took the bus to PV and the Costco store to get a few needed items(JellyBellies). Pulled out of La Cruz and sailed to Ipala for a nights anchorage, then on to Chamela for another night of anchoring. Next morning pulled out of Chamela and headed down to Barra. As I was puliing close to Barra, I noticed dark rain clouds in all different directions. As I had all my sails out a squall passed over me and the wind accelerated to 20+ knots for only a minute or two. It was the first squall I have experienced.....I know there are stronger squalls. I pulled into the lagoon and it sure felt good to be in flat water and a place I feel really comfortable in. Now I have to make all the arrangements for painting the local school and get set up to have video conferences between this school and Gabriellas school in Rancho Cordova. Please feel free to comment or ask questions......


01/17/2010 | Susan
More info, please, about the haulout? Alignment all straight? All you bought at Costco were jellybellies?:)
How many boats in this year's Mexico "class?"
01/18/2010 | Gabriella's Mommy
Speaking of Jelly Bellies... Gabriella, Grandma Pat and I took a road trip in the pouring rain today down to -- where else on this dreary Monday MLK State Holiday? -- the Jelly Belly Factory! Gabriella chose some Pineapple-Pear beans (her new favorite) and Strawberry Banana beans. They were incredibly fruity and delicious!! As I was gazing around the Jelly Belly store, I noticed a number of items that looked familiar -- as they keep popping up throughout our house: a JB bouncy ball, a JB football, a JB magnet, a JB bracelet, a JB shoulder bag, a JB hat (or three).... You get the picture. Yes, your Little Princess is definitely spoiled (by you).
The sunset photo is breathtaking!! Grandma Pat said it was either a sunrise or a sunset. I knew it couldn't possibly be the former because there is no way you would get up that early in the morning.
Glad you made it to Barra safe and sound. Sounds like you are an accident waiting to happen these days. What's up with that? Stay safe! Your grand
01/18/2010 | Gabriella's Mommy
Aww, man! That's the first time I got cut off leaving a comment!
Your granddaughter is already talking about when you come home for the summer. She is busy playing basketball and selling Girl Scout cookies. Don't worry. I'm taking pictures and saving you some Thin Mints!
We love and miss you!!
01/31/2010 | Lisa on Blue Aweigh
We are anchored at Punta de Mita and hope to catch up with you this season. Will be in La Cruz until we leave for the PPJ.
Be careful out there and most of all, have fun!
Another Haulout???
Gabriellas grandpa
01/02/2010, San Blas, Nayarit

Talked to my darling nieta yesterday and she again said do another post to my blog. I don't know how Susan from San Diego can influence my granddaughter, or maybe it's grandma Pat again. Anyway Gabriella my dear, here is another post......do you have your hankerchief ready. My one and only problem with changing my whole drive system has been the alignment, prop, or shaft. I had it professionally aligned in Mazatlan and was told my prop might be out of balance. I did a quick dive on the boat in murky bay water and discovered my 2 part strut was on it's way to becoming a one part strut. So I tightened up the 2 bolts and ran the boat in gear and thought that would solve the problem. Needless to say it didn't but it did help. It still vibrates a little too much for my satisfaction, plus I detect water ingress at the strut bolts. So tomorrow morning I will haul out here at the Singlar in San Blas (headquarters for all bitiing insects) and try to fix the problem so I can use my sweet, lovely new Yanmar engine. It's an unexpected expense (20+dinners) but I will suffer through it with class. I am currently sitting on the boat while it is raining lightly outside and the current is running at four knots with the blue moon and astronomically high and low tides. Yesterday, I hiked up to the old fort on a hilltop overlooking San Blas. They say it is the first Spanish fort built on the west coast of Mexico. I'll add pictures of it in the gallery. I hope to be out of the water for just a few hours and then on my way to Puerto Vallarta for a Costco run.

01/02/2010 | Susan
I suffered my worst jejene bites ever when we were in San Blas!
You're a one-man advertising agency for Singlar facilities, Phil:)
What do you stock up on at Costco?
Good luck on the alignment!
01/06/2010 | Gabriella's Mommy
I'm glad you were able to view and listen to Gabriella's Taylor Swift mini-concert on Skype tonight, G-Pa. By the look on your face, I think you can fully appreciate that your granddaughter is the consummate performer. To my dismay, I don't think she's inherited Phil's and my athletic genes; however, she is a star in her own right and that's really all that matters.
Our best wishes for a safe, uneventful trip to Barra. Give us a call when you get Internet service. Love you!!
MERRY CHRISTMAS
Gabriellas grandpa
12/24/2009, Mazatlan

A Very Merry Christmas to everyone. I was talking to my Princess Gabriella last night via Skype and I was duly admonished for not posting on the blog. She told me that Grandma Pat checks everyday for a new post from me and was getting a little frustrated that I didn't post as frequent as I promised to do. How sweet, her doing the bidding of Grandma Pat without being prompted. Grandma Pat....take special care of that precious part of my life. I left Guaymas in the company of 2 other boats as a nice weather window presented itself. The first 2 days was a glorious downwind sail to Topolabampa. Spent the night anchored in the town area and was amazed at the peace and quiet of that night.....I needed the sleep. Normally in Mexico, the nights in all the populated areas are filled with music and general louds noises of all descriptions. You either get used to it or leave country or only anchor in secluded areas. We left Topo for another overnighter to Mazatlan, this time with little or no wind. The only good thing about little or no wind is the flat seas. So I put my trusty new Yanmar through its paces. The engine ran great but the alignment for the prop shaft was off and it sounded like about 10 wheel bearings grinding at the same time plus the vibration. I anchored for one night in the old town anchorage next to the city sewage plant and Club Nautico. Took a bus over to the Singlar Marina and sweet talked Alma, the manager into giving me a slip that was being reserved. They have no idea when the boat will show up. So now I'm spending the last of my marina time (until I head north) getting my shaft aligned and a few other minor upgrades. I feel like the sailor who has a girl in every port. In Guaymas it's Ariana at the Singlar facility and here it's Myriam at this Singlar marina. Actually, it's just the people of Mexico are so welcoming and generous with their smiles and helpfulness. Maybe Obama has a master plan that will destroy the economy and no one will have money and we can all get back to the basics and be nice to each other with our new found Manana attitude. Nope, don't think so! Tomorrow I will go to Heathers' Place restaurant in hotel row and have a traditional Christmas dinner with a bunch of other gringo cruisers and try to watch my San Diego Chargers win another game. In my old age I really love the Christmas season and it is the toughest day of the cruising season for me because Gabriella is not here or I'm not there........I should leave about Tuesday or Wednesday for San Blas and all points south to Barra De Navidad.

12/27/2009 | Susan
Happy New Year to you, Phil! How was the Christmas dinner with your fellow cruisers? Pix? The Chargers gave you a special present:) On Friday we are off to Hollister Ranch for Jim and Nancy Aitkenhead's daughter's wedding. Where has the time gone since those carefree trimaran cruising days? Oh, that's right, you're still cruising, lucky you.

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