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S/V Si Bon
Who: Steve Cook
Port: San Diego, California
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Next leg
05/04/2011, La Paz, B.C.S

We´ll be leaving later today for our next destination, which is Santa Rosalia (SR). SR is about 224 nautical miles north of La Paz, if we were in a big hurry (we´re not) we could do this leg in less than two days. We´ll be anchorage hopping up the Sea of Cortez through what is said to be some of the best cruising areas in the world. Our current plan is to be in SR towards the end of May. Most of the coves and small fishing villages that we will stop at along the way are within 25-50 miles of each other. God willing we should be able to do this entire leg during daylight hours, stopping each night to anchor. We now have two people aboard Si Bon, myself and a friend of mine Bob Gregory. Bob is an adventureous traveler from Australia, whom I first met on a two week sailing trip we did in Turkey and Greece a few years ago. I will update the blog posts along the way whenever we can get internet access. Of course as usual all this is subject to change.
God bless.

Marina Palmira
05/03/2011, La Paz, B.C.S

Marina Palmira has been my home for the past month. Marina Palmira (MP) is a beautiful marina located within the La Paz harbor and is further protected by it´s own breakwater. MP has many amenities including; showers, laundry, wireless internet, a tienda (store), two restaurants and a hotel with a pool that we are able to use (I think). MP has a free shuttle into La Paz central three times a day and it´s location at the end of the malecon makes for nice walks into La Paz central. The thing that sets MP away from other marinas is the high level of customer service. It became apparent to me the first time I hailed MP on the VHF radio and was greeted with a warm, friendy voice instructing me of what to do, that I would be having a pleasant stay here. It was only when I arrived in the office to check in that I became aware that the young lady with the non-stressed voice was actually doing 5 things a once and put a whole new meaning on multi-tasking. The entire staff, from the dock crew to the guys in the tienda to the dude at the front gate have always treated myself and my guests with the utmost respect and ALWAYS with a smile. The three girls in the office, Lupita, Marcela and Adriana have helped me with everything you can imagine, from renting a car to helping me with my computer to giving me directions to somewhere I needed to go.....and always in their easy going polite manner. We will be leaving Marina Palmira tomorrow and heading north up the Sea of Cortez. I may not have great internet access until we get to Puerto Escondido (Loreto), so if I miss a few days blogging I´ll catch up then.
God Bless.

05/03/2011 | amber gilbert
Enjoy your trip :) keep up the fun and adventurous blogs!
Mexican computer
Steve windy
05/02/2011, La Paz, B.C.S

Due to the fact that my "never breaks" MacBook Pro is broken and there are no Apple stores in La Paz to fix it, I decided to buy a cheapie notebook. The main reason for this purchase was to be able to check weather, email and still be able to blog. I could have found other ways to get weather and used internet cafes for email, but since I am the number one fan of Si Bon´s blog I knew I had to get a new computer soon. A couple of days ago I went to WalMart and for $3,990 pesos I purchased an HP Mini notebook. During the purchase I inquired wether the computer would be able to be translated into English and the salesman assured me that I could purchase a windows upgrade online and it would be "no problema". In the mean time all my web sites would be in english. Ha Ha nice thought, but the minute I opened the computer I knew thing were going to be different. The keys are all in different places, to add the @ sign you have to hold down the alt gr key and then hit the Q key the " sign is now located at the number 2 key and I still don´t know how to get the back slash. I then decided to turn on the computer and start figuring it all out, HA another nice thought. First thing that happens is the HP registration and configuration pop up...en español, my first thought was "this sucks" my next thought was "oh shit" and the thought after that I can´t put on this family oriented blog. I immediately threw everything into the box and headed up to the Marina Palmira office. The girls in the office have always been super helpful and it was the only place I could think of to turn. As always they took care of me with a pleasant smile, even calling their IT dude at one point to come down and help. So as you can tell I´m now up and running (sort of) and striving to figure out my mexican computer. I do now know that instalar means install, acceso means access and power off is apagado. I can also now write a ñ and while writing this blog I figured out where the / is.
Right now we´re still in La Paz waiting out another norther. The same high pressure system that is providing my family and friends in San Diego with 80 degree temps is funneling wind down the Colorado River valley and into the Sea of Cortez. Today and tomorrow the sea has projected winds of 30-35 knots and we have decided that spending a few extra days in La Paz won´t be all that bad.

05/02/2011 | Shaybo
ha ha... love that you added windy next to your name, yer funny :) oh and does this mean you cant do smiley face, frownie face, angry face or the ever indifferent sideways face? bummer >:-{
05/04/2011 | karen
YIKES! Broken Mac book! That is a no go item! We have to get you fixed and SOON!!!

Can you courier it to Apple?
Leaving La Paz
04/29/2011, La Paz, BCS

Today will be another busy day on Si Bon. Shaybo is returning to San Diego this afternoon after being here for a month. When she purchased her ticket here she left her return date open, we really had no idea how things would unfold between us and her adjusting to boat life. Sharon (Shaybo) was hoping to stay until the end of April... even though I have pretty much lost track of what day it is....I think it must be getting close to the end of April. There are not to many people that could live this lifestyle for very long...but she may be one that could.
Bob and I will be leaving La Paz in the next day or two slowly working our way up the Sea of Cortez to Santa Rosalia. Right now we are monitoring a weather system moving into the northern Sea and as always will be flexible as to our departure date and time. I will be renting another car this morning to take Shaybo to the airport and then for Bob and myself to provision for our journey up the Sea.
La Paz holds MANY fond memories for me. I have had several friends visit while I've been here and have enjoyed exploring a non-tourist Mexican city with them. Shaybo and I pretty much picked up where we left off in San Diego and we now feel almost like locals here as we have met and become friends with many people. All that said, it is time to move on and continue exploring somewhere else.
Last night was date night before Shaybo leaves. We've been trying to have date night since she arrived and were to busy...still not sure what we have been so busy with.

05/01/2011 | Sharon Brooks
Miss you oodles and oodles... major frownie face, teardrop included. :'(
Easter Sunday, Macbook pro, crew changes
04/25/2011, La Paz, BCS

As most of you know I'm a twice a year church goer, usually those times are Christmas Eve and Easter. I use to also go with my Mom on Mother's day but now that she has moved on up to heaven I only go twice a year. Yesterday Shaybo and I went to the local Catholic Cathedral (the oldest cathedral in La Paz) for Easter mass. Shaybo is Catholic and also only goes to mass twice a year. I was raised Episcopalian and if the service had been in english it would have been almost the same as the Episcopal service my Mom dragged me to every week as a kid. We found out later in the day that the Mexican's don't really make much out of Easter Sunday. They have a two week celebration of Easter and yesterday was pretty much just another Sunday to them. Never the less it always makes me feel good to attend church and I usually find myself wondering why I don't go more often.
Yesterday my 6 month old, bullet proof, never has problems MacBook Pro died. It suddenly just froze up and quit working. After using Shaybo's computer to do a little research we found out that this is a very common problem with the MacBook Pro. It seems that it was designed with a faulty hard drive, and since there are no Apple service centers in this part of Mexico I'm pretty much screwed. The moral of the story is before you spend three times the cost of a PC on something that never breaks....get all the facts.
Phew!! more thing.
We have had some MAJOR changes in the crew of Si Bon. Catherine, Peter and Rich are now all gone. Bob is taking a little boat break at a local hotel before he and I leave on Saturday for a month long cruise up the Sea of Cortez to Santa Rosalia. So right now it's just Shaybo and myself and we're off to Balandra for a three day trip....just the two of us. Shaybo will be returning to the States on Friday after being here for a month. She has slid into the cruising lifestyle with amazing ease. Shaybo will be moving back to her hometown in Vermont and I'm hoping to visit her there this summer.
We'll be back to La Paz on Wednesday and as usual I'm sure we'll have a story or two to tell.
God Bless.

04/25/2011 | Phil Anderson
everytime I read a blog I think "wow", "cool" vida es bueno ,si?
04/26/2011 | Rich
Hey Steve,
There's an Apple Store in CSL.

Have fun!
Spring break
04/22/2011, Puerto Balandra

When most people in the states think of spring break they think of college aged kids drinking themselves into a stupor and being as far away from their parents as possible. Here in Mexico spring break is a time to be with your families, they go to the beach together, they go out to dinner together and they attend church activities together. Don't get me wrong, they still do their fair share of's just that they do it with their families.
We decided to stay anchored at Balandra this week during our mini cruise, Balandra offers more protection from the pesky Coromuel winds and with road access there were plenty of locals to intermingle with. On Tuesday we decided to take the dinghy in to the beach and walk about 1.5 miles to another beach called Playa Tecolote. Tecolote has waverunner rentals, lots of locals enjoying spring break and of course several palapa bars. Shaybo and I decided to rent a waverunner for 40 minutes and we buzzed up and down the shore and then took it around the point to Balandra and buzzed Bob who had remained on Si Bon to relax (sorry Bob).
Before leaving for Tecolote we had a little bit of a concern about leaving the dink unattended for so long on the beach, especially with all the crowds there for spring break. On our prior trip to Balandra we had met and become friends with the local kayak rental dude, who goes by a different name every time we see him. We decided it would be best to try and find him on the crowed beach and at least talk to him before leaving to walk over to Tecolote showing the other people on the beach that we knew the head local of Balandra and thus dispelling any ideas of screwing with the gringos rubber boat. When Benjamin or David or whatever his name is finally saw us he ran up to Shaybo giving her a big hug and kiss on the cheek, then to me giving me a hug and laughing about not getting a kiss from me. We talked and laughed with Benjamin in full site of the entire beach for about 5-10 minutes and without actually having to ask him to watch our dink, we headed to Tecolote knowing damn well that no one would be messing with the dink while we were gone, proving once again that it's not what you know but who you know.

04/23/2011 | Sharon V
I'v been busy and not online for a couple of weeks..........I love being able to catch up with the ventures with this blog!

Hi Shaybo! Looks like you are on a fun adventure and how great is it that you have an open ended return ticket. Love the pic with you at the helm. Looking forward to meeting you some time.

The dive pics are surreal. Hopefully you both have an opportunity to do some more of that since the dives here dont produce anything like those pics :)

Steve, cant believe you drove in Mexico and actually liked it. THAT is a real accomplishment. Guess Mexico and their people agree with you. Ah.....The laid back life......wish I could say the same.

Looking forwad to future posts. God bless you all and stay safe.
04/23/2011 | Shaybo
Thanks Sharon.... right backatchya :)
04/27/2011 | Frank Rogers
How much was the waverunner rental?

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