16/02/11, Bahia Tenacatita-La Manzanilla
We are still here . Apart from the fact that we really like the village of La Manzanilla the opportunity to take a Spanish Language course arose so we decided to do it as we intend to be in Spanish speaking countries for some time yet and it will greatly improve the enjoyment of our time here if we could at least communicate with the locals in their own language as well as it being fun to be able to do so.
We went to the first of our five three hour classes on Monday . Day one was pretty daunting as our teacher was determined to speak to us as much as possible in Spanish , we were struggling but as the hours passed we began to understand SOME of what we were being taught.
Today was day 3 and after 9 hours of classes and about another 12 hours of homework we feel we are getting there . We understand much more now of what we hear and see as we move about the town and interact with it`s people . They also love the fact that we are making an effort to learn their language and as a result we are finding every-one even more friendly than before. Another thing that is cool about our classes is that our school is set high up on a hill overlooking the bay and we can see Red Sky at anchor (see photos in the gallery of us at school and the view)
So thats what we are up to LOL JnL
12/02/11, Bahia Tenacatita
Spent the last two nights here having enjoyed the 20nm cruise down from Chamela. The coastline alternates between long low sandy beaches with coconut palm fringed beaches and sheer headlands with rocky points and some reef areas that extend offshore about 1 nm . The most amazing part for us is the mansions that have been built on the cliffs. There are several bays that offer limited and swell effected anchorage between Chamela and here. We decided not to stay in these anchorages however we did get close enough to them to know that they are very picturesque indeed. Bahia Careyes to our north has earned the nick name of the "Mexican Riviera" due to the aforementioned mansions clinging to the cliffs and rocks of the bay -Spectacular !.
The first night here in Bahia Tenacatita was spent in the outer and more secluded anchorage however it lived up to its reputation as being swell effected as we rolled from gunwale to gunwale for most of the night even though we had our flopper stopper rigged. After a spot of enjoyable but unproductive fishing we decided to move into the inner anchorage which was much less swell effected and as such popular . There were about 15 other boats there as well. This morning we re-located to the southern side of the bay to anchor in a less sheltered but very pretty area of the bay off the quaint village of La Manzanilla. Here you can purchase an absolute beachfront casa (home) in the village for under 400k USD (pictured above ) , IT SURE IS TEMPTING---
I could see us living right on the beach 50 metres from the main street where you can buy fresh produce and most anything else you might need. Where you can wander another 50 metres and choose from the many Plapa Resturants what you would like to have for lunch which you can then wash down with a Cervaza or Margarita ,all for under $10 USD before wandering back and settling on the verandah of your Casa gazing over the Pacific and your panga (Mexican name for large open fishing boat) anchored out the front ready for tomorrows fishing trip and partake in the local tradition of Siesta before heading back out for sundowners and dinner form which you will change out of a 50 ! Maybe we will end up somewhere like this when we are done sailing! There are more pictures of this are in the photo album if you would like to check them out - Anyway it is Siesta time here so see ya !
08/02/11, Bahia de Chamela
We are on the move again. Left Punta Mita at 1.00am yesterday and motor sailed 100 odd nm to the beginning of the Mexico Gold Coast.
We arrived at 4.00pm and apart from being pretty tired we were good .
Red Sky didn`t miss a beat. The seas were pretty sloppy early in the passage as we rounded Cabo Corrientes but they settled down as we continued south and for the last 6 hours they were almost flat calm.
Chamela (see photo gallery) is another Mexican fishing village that has a number of as we have come to know and love them as "Plapa Restaurants" . More delicious fresh cheap seafood and Cervazas. Yippee !
We will continue to cruise south over the next 2-3 weeks covering about 300nm to our next major port , the port of Zihuatanejo . Looking forward to visiting the many anchorages and beaches between here and there.
We are missing our 3rd crew member Matteo , it took a couple of days after he left before I stopped expecting to see him wander out of his cabin and come join us on deck . He has been in touch. He made it home safe and without any airline dramas and is enjoying his friends once again. He did say he had forgotten how little his money buys at home and that he missed us also.
The weather continues to be awesome - Lovin Mexico
LOL J & L
29/01/11, Marina Vallarta - Banderas Bay
We have just arrived back at the boat having seen Matthew off at the Airport.
He fly's to LA at 5.30pm and then from LA to Brisbane via Melbourne at 9.30pm. He will arrive in Brisbane on the 31st at 11.10am - 24 hours travel time and some 8000 miles away from us again.
It is very hard to come to terms with at the moment. Lots of tears shed by Mum and I as well as Matts buddy Tommy of Perfect Wave (9 years old).
His time with us here in Mexico has been a pleasure and a privilege for us and those friends of ours who have also now become friends of Matts also.
We can now just look forward to the next time he can come and be with us, who knows where that will be and when but until then he will be sadly missed.
I suppose I should take the advice that John Laws gave when he turned off his golden microphone for the final time - DON`T BE SAD IT`S OVER - BE GLAD THAT IT HAPPENED but thats a bit hard at the moment.
We will hang out here until the end of the week until some friends we met at Catalina in LA arrive with some bits and pieces for us and Red Sky and then we will in the company of Perfect Wave leave Banderas Bay and continue our trek south.
LOL J & L
23/01/11, Banderas Bay-Puerto Vallarta
The weather here continues to be awesome.
Earlier in the week we caught up with a couple that we first met in San Diego before the Ha Ha who have been hanging out here in PV for the last year or so Len & Erin off S.V Mistro a 76ft Irwin sailboat, nice people.
They invited us to go on a hike with them around the southern side of the bay. Due to the dense vegetation and spectacular scenery over the years this area has been the venue for quite a few movies such as Predator and The night of the iguana so yesterday we were picked up by them in their car and the 9 of us began our adventure.
After and hour or so we parked the car in a small village called Tomatlan to hike the 5 or so miles to Las Animas.
The trail crosses freshwater creeks and winds it`s way in and out of the forest,up and down the rocky coastline and right past an extraordinary mix of buildings,abandoned and occupied along with plenty broken dreams all of which are accessible only by foot,donkey or boat.
The locals live in some pretty modest dwellings among which are what have been at on time or another very rustic hotels and small resorts. The wet season is brutal here and many of these buildings being built on the side of a mountain have been destroyed by landslides especially last year when the rains were the heaviest in over 100 years we are told.However there were a few really nice private homes in the mix and new hotels/resorts under construction.
The views are breathtaking as are the small secluded beaches that the path leads down to every now and then. It was a great hike unfortunately we left the camera behind but Leanne did manage to get some good shots on her I-Phone and i have uploaded them to the photo gallery if you would like to take a look.
At our destination Las Animas we were greeted by the now familiar local vendors peddling their wares however there was a new addition to the array of stuff that is designed to relieve tourists of a few pasos.
Large iguanas were on hand (literally) for photo opportunities . 25 pasos (about $2) bought you the chance to have your photo taken holding onto one of these prehistoric looking critters , they sure are cool looking.
So thats what we have been up to. On a sad note Matt has decided that it is time to go back home so we have booked his flights for Saturday and he will be home on the 31st January. We will really miss him but I guess that he has to find his own way now.
We will hang out in and around PV until he leaves and then continue our journey south.
Bye for now
16/01/11, La Cruz - Banderas Bay
Matt turned 20 yesterday --- he is officially no longer a teenager !
We returned from Punta De Mita yesterday afternoon and took a slip in the La Cruz Marina . Last night we along with the Gang from Perfect Wave headed into town to a restaurant that had been recommended to Matt by some cruisers we met whilst at Punta De Mita.
It was a good recommendation , the owner was very pleased to have us and he and his staff made a big effort to ensure we enjoyed ourselves. The food was very very good as were the Margaritas. Matthews were made special for him , just the way he likes them - lots of Tequila ! Matt also sampled some pretty hot guacamole - the photo gallery show his face after the fact.
A birthday cake complete with "Happy Birthday Matteo" written on top was dessert and Happy Birthday in both Spanish and English was sung by the owner as he played the guitar.
The Perfect Wave guys gave Matt 3 very special authentic Cuban Cigars one of which we shared whilst the Mexican Coffees were being made. Kahlua , Tequila & coffee were expertly blended and set alight as it was poured into sugar rimmed glasses and then topped off with ice cream-they were good !
Then along with the bill ($250 for 7 of us ) some peppermints in novelty Viagra packaging complete with slogan - see photo gallery.
As we were leaving Matthew and Tommy from Perfect Wave got into a silly string war and covered each other in pink spray - again see photo gallery.
We then headed off to Philo`s bar for some fun which consisted of a few games of pool , lots of dancing and even more Margaritas .
Leanne & Matt joined the band for a few numbers , Leanne on the spoons and Matt on the Bongo drums it was a lot of fun . Come to think of it I recall Leanne booking herself a gig with the band playing the spoons at Punta De Mita for Monday night ! We all staggered back to the boat at about midnight.
Thats the way Matt celebrated turning 20 here in Mexico. I hope that it is a memory that he will have forever I know it will be for us.
14/01/11, Punta De Mita
We are great and enjoying the awesome weather here. Also good to be out of the marina and on anchor back at Punta De Mita . We are surfing every day and Mat has become pretty good now, he loves it. Matt's 20th birthday tomorrow so we will be headed out for dinner somewhere nice . Hope that none of you suffered any losses in the floods , we sure have picked a good time not be there.
Check out the PHOTO GALLERY for pictures from New Years eve and of our surfing.