05/23/2012, To a Cruiser In Mexico
It happens to somewhere between 10 to 20 cruisers per season and last night we saw it happen again.
A Dingy and motor was stolen last night from a boat anchored in the Mazatlan Old Harbor. The dingy was on the davits, but only suspended about 1ft above the water. Two people in a panga simultaneously cut the 4 davit lines and the dingy splashed in the water waking up the sleeping crew who arrived on deck to watch their dingy/motor being slowly towed away around the ferry terminal break water and up into the harbor.
After a passing of about 5 minutes (for VHF radio calls and Alerting the Harbor Control) I picked up the poor dingyless cruiser and we set out up the harbor in search of the dingy, but as you might expect it disappeared into the darkness further up the Mazatlan Harbor estuary.
We were anchored 100ft away from the vessel and had chatted earlier in the day about the thefts here including locked motors being taken off stern pulpits at night. Unfortunately, the hassle of bringing up the dingy more securely appears to have presented an easy target for the thieves. They bypassed our dingy high on the davits with visible locking cables and went for the dingy with no locking cables suspended only a foot above the water off the stern, which was literally 3ft form the cruisers heads sleeping on their aft cabin pillows! The ability to hear someone in the act of stealing your dingy, isn't going to help you when they are already 5ft away and you are now dingyless to go after them!
Cruisers in planning read the US travel warnings for Mexico and ask if it is really safe, they worry about getting sick form bad food and water, and they worry about getting short changed in the dollar to Peso conversions. But after 4 seasons in Mexico hands down the No 1 threat to a Cruiser in Mexico isn't the drug gang wars or the risk of a bad case of Diarrhea. Besides a sunburn and hang-over, the No 1 risk is having their dingy or outboard motor stolen! The hassle and cost of replacement, even with insurance, if going to be a far bigger PITA than going overboard on dingy security. Buy the bigger lock. Buy the bigger cable and most of all, take the time to make your dingy or outboard look way too difficult to mess with trying to steal it!
Just a reminder and some advice from a cruising bozo. Treat your dingy and motor like every night someone will be floating through the anchorage looking for the easiest one to steal and plan accordingly...because on some nights, they are!
|4th Yr. 2012 Cruising Season||
05/21/2012, at Deer Island off of Mazatlan
Spending the weekend anchored out at Deer Island, rather than in the Mazatlan Old Harbor, let us have a more typical day at anchor of boat bottom cleaning and water sports. It also put us in the mood to make one of our favorite anchorage dinners...Pizza! There is just something about making pizza out in the cockpit on the magma BBQ while the sun sets over the ocean that is cool and makes the pizza just taste better.
It was relaxing and fun to pull the kids around the anchorage. And after Jason scraped all the barnacles off our dingy...it can actually pull a knee boarder again!
But Beware...danger (or at least pain) was spotted floating in the anchorage. This Pacific Manawar jelly fish may look small and almost like a bubble of air, but it's blue stinging tentacle feel like a branding iron!
Both kids had a fun day and even in our 4th year of dealing with the Mexican sun, managed to get sunburned, just like a tourist!
|4th Yr. 2012 Cruising Season||
05/20/2012, Out at Deer Island
We are hanging out in Mazatlan until my Colonoscopy biopsy results are in on Wednesday so rather than hang out in the Old Harbor until then, we decided to come out to Deer Island just off the Mazatlan Malacon for some swimming and boat bottom cleaning. Just before sunset a fleet of fishing pangas came out to the anchorage and started throwing their cast nets in the water. But it wasn't until the sun went down that the real fishing frenzy started! The lights rigged up on the sides of their boats attracted schools of Ballyhoo and we watched for hours as they filled up their pangas with the small fish.
Ballyhoo are primarily used as sports fishing bait, but we have seen them all around the local fish markets lately and I'm pretty sure that the locals are frying them up and eating them. At one point, the fishing fleet had drifted around our boat and completely surrounded us, so we just paused our Star Trek Next Generation Video and sat out in the cockpit watching the action!
On a totally different subject, here's Just a little side note that I found interesting about the Mexican Health Care system. We left the Dr office with a bag containing two plastic bottles filled with my colon biopsy samples. So into a Taxi we went to drop them off at the lab. We will pick up our own lab results when they are ready and if everything looks good, we are done, no need to see the Dr again just for him to tell us what we can clearly read on the lab report. It was a little strange carrying what looked like a plastic grocery bag with medical tissue samples through the streets of Mazatlan, but it sure was a lot cheaper than using the Medical Currier lab service!
For the procedure, I didn't have to fill out a single form. All they asked was my name, age, weight, and if I had any allergies. The test results won't be kept in the office in case of a law suit for 20yrs or summarized and sent on to some masterminds at a Government run health care review board, but remain with ME, the paying patient. Imagine, a private health care system running smoothly, efficiently, and affordably without insurance companies OR big brother Government getting in the way. Maybe some of the fool politicians in Washington DC, need to pay a little visit to Mexico to learn about how Mexico's Private Heath Care System makes the USA's system look like a complete joke and an expensive one as well. But on second thought that wouldn't happen, because those Government hacks can't travel to Mexico due to the State Department travel warnings, well, unless I guess it's for a spring break vacation to Cancun.
|4th Yr. 2012 Cruising Season||