The Wait is Finally Over!
01 April 2011 | San Blas
When we arrived back in Bandaras Bay from our travels south, we decided to apply for what is called a FM3 visa which is like a temporary Immigrant permit which you have to renew each year. The benefit for us was that we wouldn't have to leave Mexico every 6 months to renew our tourist visa's. Since we plan on staying her another full year, that is a savings of 4 return air fares. We may go home for a visit at some point and with the FM3 we can go when we want.
Anyhow, we had to wait around in La Cruz until we got them and it took just over 3 weeks. We were getting antsy to leave as the anchorage there has really been windy and rolly as well as we want to get on with starting to move more northwards.
We received them on Wednesday morning and by Thursday morning at 5am we were underway towards San Blas. It was a 60 mile trip and we wanted to make sure we arrived before dark which is why we started so early. We had a good trip and saw a few whales, a few dolphins and I saw 2 manta rays. The first one I saw from a distance and couldn't figure out what I was seeing as I saw a big black fin come out of the water. I thought maybe a shark but then another fin came out about 12 feet away from the first and it matched the other one except the bottom side was white. That's when I realized what I was seeing. The second one I had an up close view which was a little too close. Ian was down below having a nap, and I was on watch. We were motor sailing and the boat was slightly heeled over. I was sitting on the upwind side of the boat and could see down into the water on the other side. All of a sudden right beside the boat I saw the same kind of fin.I jumped over to the other side and saw a manta ray about 5 feet across swim right behind the boat. Any closer and we would have hit it. The worst part was Ian was dragging a fishing line and I had visions of this poor animal getting caught up in the line but happily that didn't happen.
When we arrived in Manachen Bay which is just a few miles outside of San Blas, our friends on Full and By, Dick and Anne were there. Dick rowed over once we got the anchor down and invited us to happy hour on their boat along with another boat. He even rowed us over so that we didn't have to take the dingy down. It was a really nice way to arrive in the bay. Of course we were dog tired and by 8 pm we were back on board in ready for bed.
This morning, we upped anchor and motored into the estuary of San Blas and came to the marina. We will stay here at the dock until Sunday when we can be hauled out of the water. So Sunday we start what we hope will only take 4 or 5 days to do. We are painting the boot stripe with black bottom paint as it is constantly growing barnacles and other sea life. And since we will be out we may as well throw on a coat of bottom paint onto the rest of the bottom too.
So that's about it for now, there is a pool here at the marina so maybe it's time for a swim...