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Cruising in the Sea of Cortez
Cruising, marketing, lollygadding around. No hurry to get anywhere.
Cruisers come to the Rescue
Gary Stratton
12/07/2010, Puerto Escondido, Mx

The established cruisers are a close knit community. If anyone is in trouble and needs help the cruisers rush to their aid. People who come from the city where they don't greet passers-bye or know their neighbors will jump in their dinghy to go and assist a fellow boater. Boating brings people back to their natural human affinity of kindness and concern of others welfare.

I remember when we were anchored in 'The Waiting Room' at Puerto Escondido, BCS. The call went out on the VHF that a sailboat had broken loose from her mooring and was drifting towards the rocks. Within a few minutes 8 or 10 dinghies were streaking to the rescue. Lines were grabbed and attached to the drifting vessel and a chorus of screaming outboards strained to stop her drift to the rocks. When I inserted my dinghy near the vessels stern to push it away from danger it was only a few feet from contact. With the combined effort of all the drift of the sailboat towards harm was arrested and she slowly began to move up wind.

Ray, one of the resident boaters, suggested we move it onto a good mooring buoy in the inner harbor where it would be safe until the owners returned. I climbed aboard to steer the sailboat while the rest provided propulsion. The boat was moved into the harbor and attached securely to a mooring. In 5 minutes the fleet of rescue craft were back to where they were before the call for help had gone out.

Happy Cruising
Gary Stratton
www.thefasttrackplan.com/svapolima

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The health benefits of rowing
Gary Stratton
12/06/2010, Puerto Escondido, Mx


Every one knows that rowing is good exercise. Rowing exercises most of the body's muscles without putting undue shock loads on the knees or other joints. It a safe way for us seniors to keep our bodies in good shape with little risk of injury. There is something relaxing about quietly moving though the water with the gentle chuckling of the water under the bow, watching the sea life around us that rejuvenates our soul. We seem to be more part of nature and the great scheme of life. Rowing is good for both our body and our soul.

Boaters are perfectly placed to partake in rowing as they have a boat on the water and most carry a dinghy. Seniors can remember when most boaters had a hard dinghy that was rowed to shore. Sure a few people put a little outboard on the back and putted around, but a lot rowed. There were a few Zodiacs and Avons out there with 25 HP outboards that roared around sometimes pulling a water skier. 30 years ago SeahorseV, our Mapleleaf 48, carried a 12 foot Whitehall rowing skiff. It carried our 4 teenagers, my wife and myself safely with enough freeboard. With 2 sitting side-by-side pulling one oar each, it would outpace some with small outboards. It was a joy to row so it became our water taxi, our runabout. The whole family used it with the skill of much practice and so it also became our exercise machine.

Today almost all boats carry an inflatable of one type or another. Inflatables are the popular, you might say the 'style' or what you 'must have'. Indeed there are few other choices readily available. So do we use them for exercise? Oh no, they do not row well at all. It becomes frustrating to put a lot of energy into the short oars that just seem to stir up the water without much effect on the forward motion of the inflatable. But they do move out very well with an outboard of 9.9 or more HP. The only people that seem to row them are those that are out of gas or have a malfunctioning outboard.

However the point is to row for exercise so who cares if the inflatable waddles like a duck at about the same speed, you still can enjoy the results. Just remove the outboard or even raise it up and row. Tell yourself that it does not matter how fast you are going. It will do you good even if you only row one way and motor back. After all if you were sitting on a rowing machine you would not be moving at all. Think of it as a rowing machine with a view. Come on you seniors! Row! Row! your Boats!

Gary
SV Apolima

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Just a Thought
11/16/2010, Puerto Escondido, BCS

. Received a short comment from my brother Herb the other day on Facebook, He said he had looked up our bay here in Escondido and it was pretty remote but it had nice coloured water. Great. You have to love the water, and we really do love the areas up here. They have absolutely everything you could want, lots of swimming, enough shopping that you can get by, a terrific market for veggies, great companionship with all the other boaters and campers. It really is a toss up between here and La Paz. Both have their attributes, both have great people, we do find that La Paz has more activities which is a big draw. A real toughy.

Anyway, Herb's comment reminded me of a little old bag lady that I saw in a small town in Oregon while I was trucking. I had stopped at the Wal-Mart mall to pick up some groceries, and as I was leaving I noticed just outside of the mall, on a large grass strip was this bag lady with her shopping cart etc. But more than that, she had a discarded beach umbrella, (a couple of the struts were broken), and a discarded lawn chair, and was sitting under the shade singing and watching traffic. How peaceful and creative. Now I know, someone is going to say, how about the rain and the cold and snow etc etc etc. but for just that moment in time she was at peace with the world, and isn't that what all of us want, just some point in time to be at peace with the world!

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September Already
09/12/2010, still in La Paz

In the next week I will get out the camera and take a few shots to post. Live in La Paz is still great. "Are we ever going to leave?" seems to be the question. Gary is back from the north country, so I am not batching anymore, but I think he will be the next one on the net wondering what to do with a "bitchy" wife? There are days!!

We have a new threat out at the Magote. A 100 foot schooner, a boat with lovely lines that was built in Turkey, and sunk at Marina Costa Baja awhile back, has been anchored out by the folks at Abaroa's boat yard (the scuttlebut seems to be that they didn't pay their bill) (just remember, I am not responsible for the accuracy of rumors), anyway, it would appear that they are on a 50 lbs danforth, 30 feet of chain, and lots of rope, and are a danger to all. We had to move they were just too threatening. I personally don't think the anchor is even in the sand, so they wander around just dragging their chain and anchor like the old ghosts in the castles of Europe.
So far the wind has been quiet, and even so, the schooner would have wiped us out the other day if we had still be in our same spot. Haven't ventured inside it but someone said it is just a huge empty shell. But it has great lines, and really looks pretty. Would make a good B&B if someone wanted to put the cash into the interior.

Gary came back with lots of energy, I think the north spawns that, so he is systematically getting all the decks clean, and doing all the other blue jobs that he knows I didn't do.

I am still marketing like mad, and I think that is going to slow down because Gary is talking about taking a run up into the sea for a month or so.
Check out: http://thefasttrackplan.com/svapolima
and get your name in the draw for an earth friendly cleaning kit, great for our oceans.


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Chit chat from La Paz
Hot
08/24/2010, La Paz, Mexico

Hi there, hope all is fine in your world. Have been doing more marketing than blogging lately, so some of this news will be old hat to anyone that is keeping up with the world.
Life in La Paz goes on. I think everyone is tired of the heat, in fact one cruiser who shall remain nameless, to protect his wife, came on 22 last evening and asked what he should do with a wife who was nagging him all the time, and driving him crazy! Well, there was lots of silly comments, but I really think that life on his boat is not getting better!! "A woman Scorned" and all that.
There seems to be lots of boats these days going "walkabout" every 20 knots of wind seems to be dangerous these days. 2 small boats went up on the Malacon a couple of days ago, one of them a cute little folk boat, that someone should salvage and love, because it will be toast if we get any serious wind. And of course a boat that everyone calls "Footprints" seems to be leaning on the sandbar every time we get a low tide. Not sure why it has been abandoned but I guess it doesn't hurt it to lean on the sand every couple of days, but again, we have had no wind to speak of.
Our new meeting room is coming along great. There is talk about a 50 inch flat screen on the wall for movie night, I wonder who will pick the movies, let me see, "chick flicks" or "murder & mayhem" hummmmmmm..... Anyway, the progress is great, and apparently there are mucho plug-ins all over the place, so it sounds like lots of places to plug in computers. Probably be ready for the "ha ha" group, because it is moving along quickly. Wheel chair access it won't have tho, because it is upstairs, but a great view of the bay will be had. I mentioned a bar, but someone said that alcohol won't be allowed. Find that hard to believe that prohibition will be in force in Mexico. We shall see I guess.
And last but not least, I have been following the New Dream Plan, that Shaklee has come up with for Canada and the USA, and there are some great new perks. So if you have any interest in making a couple of hundred dollars a week, or just want to win a "Get Clean Kit" go to
http://thefasttrackplan.com/svapolima
Until next time, enjoy.
Phyllis


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6 months away, Social Security Check Cancelled
07/30/2010

Well, this morning on our chat net, (I use to call it 21 net, but it has moved to 65 now) anyway, "Blue Wizzard" came on with a news break. He had received a letter from the US Social Security department, saying that his Social Security check ( which would be our old age pension checks, for us Canadians) for July was cancelled due to him being out of the country for over 6 months. If he wanted to question that he had to go to a consulate and prove he was still a US citizen. Of course this raised multi questions, and caused him and his family untold grief. He phoned the gov't department to verify that this was correct, and they said that they had sent out a number of these letters, and were getting "lots" of phone calls. This is a real concern to all of us sailing because, of course we are out of our home countries for more than 6 months, and for a lot of people there is also the problem of mail that hasn't caught up etc. Which means that, if you rely on your SS cheque being in the bank every month, when you go to the bank you might be rather shocked!!

He thinks that he may have sorted it out, because he called Barbra Boxer (sp)( I think she is a senator, being Canadian I don't know all the US gov't officials and their designations,) anyway, she agreed to sort it out for him, and he feels that the government official can be trusted to do that, so he is feeling relieved. I guess time will tell whether he has to go down to Cabo and show his passport etc. to the consulate.

So, if you get said letter, you might try his route and call up your government official and see if it helps.

After that, Bob from "Pantera" came on and said that if Canadians were out of the county for 6 months our Old Age Pension checks were cancelled as well. I disagreed with him, and he bet me a looney he was correct, so I looked it up today on the net, and Bob you owe me a looney! Not only are they not cancelled but they are paid anywhere in the world, and if you want they will deposit them anywhere in the world in the correct currency. It comes under FAQ--Do I have to be in the country to collect?

So,, As the anchor drags, that's all for today.

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