Chrysalis Adventures

23 March 2024 | Loa Probanf, Loas
07 March 2024 | Chang Mia, Thialand
04 March 2024 | Wa. State USA
23 March 2023 | Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic
01 January 2023 | Sea Tac
04 March 2022 | Zihuatenajo, Mexico
30 September 2019 | Mt. Vernon, Wa
25 April 2019
06 February 2019 | La Paz, Mexico
05 January 2019
07 November 2018 | San Diego
15 September 2018
13 August 2018
14 June 2018
08 June 2018
29 May 2018
27 May 2018
19 May 2018

Loas part two, Elephant sanctuary

23 March 2024 | Loa Probanf, Loas
Laos Part Two

In the last blog post we had made it down the mighty Mekong River to the little town of Luang Prabang. We were enjoying the town a lot, walking most of the time as the town was fairly small. Before we left we wanted to go see some elephants. This had been in the plans for Asia, but we had not found the right place yet. Most of the elephant sanctuaries are non riding type. While there are a few who still do, tourists are encouraged to not use them as it is not a great life for the elephants. We took a tour that would take us to a river side sanctuary and included a longtail boat ride up to some waterfalls. The longtail boats are used all over Asia. They have a motor in the boat attached to a long shaft to the propeller, on a teeter-totter arrangement. This way in shallow areas the propeller can be lifted out of the water easily. The shaft can be anywhere from six to twelve foot long. Depending on the boat size these motors can be of varying sizes, lawn mower size on a twenty foot skinny skinny boat, up to diesel engine truck size on one of the large forty footers. Our driver picked us up at our hotel, gathered the rest of the bunch and delivered us to the sanctuary. As we pulled up to a grass field, elephants were loose and eating some leaves laid out for them. Each elephant has his own trainer called a Mahout. The mahouts are more like family with the elephant. They stay with them all day, every day taking care of the elephant. Some elephants have been passed down from father mahout to son. They are very easy with the elephants and talk to them rather than hit them to get the elephant to do something. When we first got there we were directed to a large hut, given refreshments and an introduction to the life of the elephant and the sanctuaries efforts to save overworked and abused elephants. We were shown a chart of commands the mahouts use to communicate with the animals. As we were listening we noticed the elephants had turned and now were looking at us. There was no fence between us and them, only the mahouts. The guide said the elephants know his presentation is almost over and they know what comes next, we didn’t. So after he concluded he took us over to the banana stand so we could buy some treats for the elephants, their favorite. As we all walked back in a line, we had been directed by the mahouts to let the elephant come over to us for their treats. They were very gentle and we were able to stand next to them and pet them as the munched they favorite treat. We took lots of pictures and said goodbye so we could head to the river for our longtail rides, we would later meet up with our elephant friends down on the river for bathing time. Half an hour ride up the river brought us to the waterfalls. We had to climb some series of steps, a bit of a challenge for Leiann and her bum hip. But like she says she can hurt at home or in tropical jungles, which is her choice. We’ll see the doctors (again) when we get back. The fall cascaded down several steps with swimming pools along the way. Leiann took a pass but I had to have a go. The water was slightly milky and VERY cold. Considering the air temp in the eighties the water was probably low sixties. I did not spend to much time in it! We hung around for an hour enjoying the beautiful setting in the jungle canopy. Returning on the boats downstream we pulled onto a gravel bar across from the sanctuary. We could see the elephants coming across the river to us with their mahouts riding them. We were given the opportunity to go in the water with elephants if we wanted to, but were warned that the animals would release their bowels when bathing and if we chose to bathe with them then we stay up river from their behinds. We took a pass and watched others giving them a rub down and splashing water on them. At one point one of the elephants began to splash back, slamming his trunk into the water at those close by. They loved doing this! We loaded up in the boat and crossed to the other side of the river. Our guide took us on a tour of the sanctuary. We were shown how paper is made from the elephant poop. Gross eh, but they sift, clean and dry it so the fibers are the only thing left making a rough paper, which they then paint, decorate, make items out of the results and sell to the tourists as keepsakes. We decided we didn’t need to partake. It was time to take last minute picture with the elephants, tip the mahouts and say goodbye. It was a great adventure, one we look back on with a smile. We stayed a few more days in Luang Prabang, before again heading out for our next adventure. We had to get down to Cambodia to meet our friend Linda and visit the ancient site of Angkor Wat. Stay tuned.

Flying into Chang Mia, Thialand

07 March 2024 | Chang Mia, Thialand
Dave | 80 to 90's
Flying out of Seattle September of 2023 on the Eleventh. (Yes, we knew) We flew down to San Francisco to catch our fight on China Air to Taiwan, a 13 hour flight. We were very impressed with the airline, puts US flights to shame, free meals and drinks, better leg room and service. Even Leiann’s wine was free! After a three hour lay over we boarded our last flight to Chiang Mai Thailand, a four hour flight. All in all it was not a bad experience, both flights had great seats which really helps with my back. We were able to sleep and felt rested when we got there. We grabbed a taxi to our lodgings with no issues (some times taxis in foreign countries try to take advantage of stupid tourists, but not here, cheap taxis yes!). Leiann had booked a room for $38 a night and we were surprised at what that bought you in Thailand. We walked up the grand entrance to a very large foyer with a grand stairway and our first example of a Buddhist shrine! Impressed we headed up to our room and unpacked our stuff and our brains, safe and home for awhile. The next morning we went down to the restaurant in the hotel for breakfast, it was our first taste of mango smoothies, along with a plate of fresh fruits with bacon and eggs, yum, life is good.

Our friend Colin was still in Laos but was coming to meet us and introduce us to Thailand. We met Colin several years ago when we both were sailing down the coast of central America. We both sold our boats and began land travel, staying in touch and often meeting back up in foreign ports over the last ten years. He actually inspired us to come to Asia as he had posted many pics of temples, elephants and monkeys on his face book site.

When Colin showed up we went out on our first day of temple hunting. We wanted to start with the smallest temple and work our way up. There are three hundred temples in Chang Mai and 30,000 in the country! Our first temple was just across from our hotel. Small but as it was our first we very moved by the art; it was over three hundred years old! This was not a tourist attraction but someones church, as are most we would see. Our first day I think we saw something like six temples. And every time we thought we had seen it all we were Wowed again, this continued for the next six weeks of Temple visits. Later that night Colin took us to one of his fave restaurants for our first taste of the national dish, Khoa Soi. It was so spicy hot we could barely eat it. We later found that most Thai dishes were too spicy for us even when we asked for NO SPICY, LOL.

After a couple days in our swanky hotel we moved over to the condo’s Colin was staying at. It was a bit dated, but a one bedroom condo with a city view, fully furnished for $20 US a day was a deal and worked for us for a week. We then found a really nice and new condo closer to town for $420 for a month, including a pool, gym, restaurant, coffee shop, great WiFi, great view of the city from 8th floor, nicely furnished, great deal.

We stayed in Chang Mia for the next six weeks, planning only to stay for a month. We explored temples a plenty, found lots of live music events in the evenings along with huge day and night street markets. The street markets are amazing going on for blocks, with lots of varieties of local foods and other goods, at great prices. Again finding NOT Spicy is difficult. One of the fave street foods is called Roti; it is a thin dough flattened and spun like a pizza, but thinner. Then put on a hot flat metal grill bathed with butter. It can be sweet with the typical banana, egg, sweet creme or savory with chicken or shrimp and egg. Had a few of these. Lots of sea foods, including cuddle fish, squid, octopus and unidentifiable stuff. Worms, bugs, pig snouts, pig feet, crocodile, duck, chicken and of course lots of veggies and rice. We always found something we liked at the markets and dirt cheap too. I got to play with a couple bands while there as well as a few open mics. We really liked Chiang Mai but it was time to move on.
We headed up north to the city of Chiang Rai. It was once the capital before it was moved to Chiang Mai. We had heard that the two temples, the blue and the white were a don’t miss while in Thailand. Chiang Rai is much smaller the Chiang Mai, but still has lots going on. Colin came up to visit us and took us out to see a couple huge night clubs. Not really our cup of tea, but the first performance was great with traditional Thai dancers and music. Then the music went up to about 120db levels and the disco started for the night, we headed out not long after and found a quieter place for the evening. The three of us headed up to the blue temple the next day. It is impossible to describe the blue temple, think Indiana Jones meets Vegas (see photos). Truly amazing. We spent several hours going though it. Colin left to head up to the mountain on his bike and we headed to the White temple the next day. The white temple again is impossible to describe briefly, think Snow White meets Alice in wonderland (see pics) We were nearing the end of our second 30 day visa and needed to get out of Thailand. After six days in Chiang Rai we headed for the border of Laos.

We had made arrangements to do a two day trip down the Mekong River to a little town called Luang Prabang. We stayed at a nice hotel right on the Mekong, for a couple of nights on the Thai side to see a little of the town and be be ready to head out early on our boat. The boats that do this trip are called long boats, made of wood, of various design, SEE PICs. They are called slow boat tours as the do less then 10mph going down the river. The cheapest “the hippie/party” boat is only $20 US. But it is way over crowded with lots of drinking, loud music and you can imagine what the bathroom would be like. So we took the next upgrade of $160 on a nice boat with about 20 others. We each had our own booth, breakfast and lunch served for us and included a hotel room of the evening between days. It was a great experience with sightings of water buffalo, some of which were PINK, elephants, birds, jungle landscape and we even got to visit a small village school. Leiann was taking pictures when she dropped her new phone in the river, she nearly cried. We saw local fishermen fishing the same way the have for many years, on small hand made wooden boats. Some throwing round nets into the air as they fell to the water. It was as time stood still on the this river up in the Lao Jungle.

We arrived in Luang Prabang and got a taxi to take us to our hotel, again not knowing what it would be like. And again to our surprise it was a great little place with a lovely couple who went out of their way to make sure we had what we needed. It was a small boutique hotel off the alley and only a blocks walk to the center of town and the night market there. Night markets are a normal thing in Asia as day time temps lead to folks staying out late at night when it is cooler. We were in Luang Prabang for a week and spent many nights eating in the night market. One of the interesting things we saw was the beginning of what we would find in Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam, the remnants of French Colonial buildings left behind from years past. At the turn of the century these countries were know as Indochina under Colonial French rule. As the English had control of India, parts of Africa and Burma, so the French had control of Indochina. We spent much time strolling along admiring the French architecture. The town is small and great for walking. At one point we rented an electric side car scooter with a Snoopy face on the front of the side car. We had a great time driving down the road and singing “Hang on Snoopy, Hang On” We had a guest coming to meet us in Cambodia to join us exploring Angkor Wat, the famous ruins of the Khmer People.

At home with the kids, summer of 2023

04 March 2024 | Wa. State USA
After returning form our winter adventure in the Caribbean and Mexico we returned to our little RV home. It was wrapped up like a taco with tarps and a cover to protect it from snow and rain during the winter. We always put it away with little containers of chlorox and damp rid. When we pulled off the cover and tarps, no rain, mold or mildew was inside. With in a couple days we had our little home put back together and were snug as a bug. We had bought a camping lot to put the RV on last year so as to make our returns home easier. We have a car at home that we have our daughter drive when we are not there so it does not site in the weather and develop issues. With home and vehicle we were back to planning outing with the kids as they look forward to our returns. First order was to get the dirt bikes up and running along with Benny's racing go kart and Malli's dune buggy. These kids are spoiled bad, but I never had those things as a child nor a grampa to do them with so it is my joy to spend time with them doing what they like and keep them off their PHONES as much as I can. Our grandson both play a lot of sports during the summer. Between, football/hockey practices and games we are busy trying support them both. Our granddaughter (Elyana) turned 6 last May and we had missed her birthday, which we had told her the previous year we would be back for, so she was a bit miffed and we told her we would have a second birthday for her. She loves to swim and spend time with grama. She started soccer this year, but it ending before we got back. Both boys have birthdays during the summer in addition to sports. As is normal our summer flew by with fishing trips, dirt bikes, go kart racing, little league football/hockey, fourth of July picnic and fireworks, more birthdays... We are busy when home and often look forward to returning to our slow pasted traveling retired life, so we can just chill. We also attend many music events when home as now with COVID over (or at least not an issue) music venues have returned. I get to get up on stage for my fifteen minutes of fame at the weekly open mic jam. I am a late blooming amateur musician and I have a lot of fun with it. After spending time with friends and wearing out the kids, the weather began to turn cold and the leaves of autumn began turning color. The kids were back in school and it was time to button up the RV and head to Asia. We had been planning this trip for the past three years but COVID had made it not possible, so we are looking forward to exploring all the temples we have only seen in pictures and Leiann wants to hang with some elephants. So stay tuned for more Chrysalis Adventures.

Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic one

23 March 2023 | Las Terrenas, Dominican Republic
Dave | 80 every day
It is Feb 21st, 2023. We are now in the Dominican Republic. Here is a little recap of the last six weeks in the Caribbean. We got into Puerto Rico after a grueling red eye flight out of Seattle to Washington DC to Puerto Rico. We were dog tired when we got there not being able to do much sleeping on the plane. We got a shuttle to our rental car company. When we got there there were lots of unhappy people we were just the newest ones. Seems the rental car company had rented out all the cars and no other rental car company had any available until maybe later in the day and it started raining hard. We did not have a number for a taxi and did not see any on the street so decided to take the shuttle back to the airport and get a taxi there. At the airport we found some much needed food and coffee but were just worn out and needed sleep. We got a taxi to take us to our Airbnb without further issue. We checked in and took a long nap. Waking later in the early evening and the landlord had told us there really was no restaurants nearby. She did not speak any English but did offer to drive me over to a convenience store. So we spent out first night in Puerto Rico eating potato chips, cookies and some grub left over from our snack stash. No biggy we are used to issues such as this and took it in stride. The next day we got a number for a taxi and were able to rent a car. Now we were able to go eat and go to the grocery store. When you book a place in a foreign country proximity to food in a consideration as you expect to be totally lost when you get there. This Airbnb had said it was a walk to the grocery store, and it was, once you know where to walk to, and was about 30 minutes walk at that. All part of the great adventure. Did not take long to figure out traffic in San Juan was terrible, scary and confusing. We did a little exploring that first day but not too far out yet. The following day we had a plan to go out to a beach we had heard about. Got a little lost on the way and were a bit disappointed when we got there. This was a bit of a local beach and was covered with garbage. We had a nice dinner there and headed home. We were not sure how long we would stay in Puerto Rico before heading over to the next island of the Dominican Republic. One thing we had wanted to see was the old fort of San Juan. To get there we had to drive through the middle of town in the worst traffic. We went the wrong way and had to circle back. When we did get up to the old areas there was no parking to be had, and traffic was bumper to bumper. And it started raining hard. We came to the conclusion that if one wanted to see the fort areas it would be best to be dropped off by bus or taxi. We have seen lots of old port forts in our travels so felt we had seen enough of it and did not want to come back to the inner city again. There are a couple beach hotel strips close to the city with all the high end shopping and trendy restaurants, but that is exactly what we try to avoid. The following day, our third, we decided to drive as far to the east end of the island and around to the south as time would allow in a day. It was quite interesting exploring places not many tourist go. I felt like it was a bit like east L.A. Lots of indications that you were in a Spanish speaking and impoverished country, with big name American businesses in abundance, Kentucky Fried Chicken, McD’s, Burger King, WalMart… We found little fishing villages, small neighborhoods and lots of tropical growth. This end of the island is the wettest part with a rain forest. We headed home after finding dinner, it was a fun day. The next day we headed out in the other direction to the west heading for a different beach that we had heard good things about. After a bit of recon we found it. It was small but had a few restaurants right on the water and was not like the big tourist beaches in town. We hang out that afternoon, had a nice dinner on the beach watching the sunset. Since we got here we had been looking for a long term place to stay but was not finding anything we could afford. We had read that Puerto Rico was expensive. No more than the US except for imported items, but much more then Mexico or even southern Europe. The next day we drove across the island over the mountains to the southern side. It was much more arid on this side and more picturesque driving. We drove along the south shore and back up the west side heading for a beach area we had heard of named Rincon. This turned out to be the place we should have gotten an Airbnb. Right up our alley, a little funky surf town. By this time we had already decided we would take the ferry over to the Dominican the following day. We enjoyed another great day at a funky little beach bar and then drove a bit further up the coast discovering another little place that had a great malecon (concrete path along the shore). We had a great walk and ate ice cream watching the sun set on the water. The next day we turned in the car and got a taxi to take us to the ferry. The ferry is an over night affair. We could have taken a flight for the same money but would have gotten us in at a poor time to arrive. We like to get to places in the daylight if possible and then find a safe place to land. The ferry is more like a little cruise ship that locals take to have a little holiday fun. It is not a US or first world type of cruise ship. Being probably 50 years old with rooms on the utilitarian side, but just fine for us. So we were the only “Gringos” on the boat, just like we like it! They had a little entertainment, band, dancers and even a magician! We enjoyed to trip, dinner buffet and had a good nights sleep, albeit in separate small beds. We woke up to breakfast buffet and arrived in port the next morning. The downtown area looked pretty sketchy and we had read that one should be cautious in Santa Domingo. We found an old guy offering us a taxi, he looked harmless so we headed out to the parking lot with him, to find his “taxi’ was his personal car and had seen better days. No air conditioning, cracked windshield, tired everything, but he got us to the bus station. When we arrived at the bus he TOLD us to get on as the bus was just leaving. He stopped it for us and we waved goodbye to our new friend. The bus was packed, this was no tourist bus but a locals bus, old and cramped. We felt right at home. The temps were not too bad, in the eighties, but a little warm with no A/C or bathroom. Hopefully it will not take that long to get to the place we were headed. We had read about places in the Dominican. There are several “All Inclusive” resorts on the east coast, so we avoid those. But up north there is a small area called Las Terrenas. It boasts empty beaches, few big hotels, and a very multicultural experience, sounded like us. We arrived safely with our Airbnb sending a taxi to pick us up. Good thing because the little station was crowded with people and moto taxis competing to get fares. A moto taxi is a small motorcycle (typical 150cc). You just get on the back carrying what you can for a fare of $1 to $2. Full size taxis are few and far between. Arriving at our new HOME we were greeted and made to feel at home. We had a fairly large place, definitely a second world standard, but a good bed, hot water shower and a pool and veranda, just like we like it. And two large Rhodesian Ridgebacks to keep us safe. Stay tuned for more of our Dominican adventure. Addendum: A little delayed getting this posted, it is now March 23rd. We rented a quad to get around town and see a bit out of walking distance. All of the rental places wanted over $1,000 a month, not much of a break off the daily rate of $45. I posted a notice on one of the local F.B. forums and got the name of a guy who rents his out. So we got one four $400. Seemed like a great deal, except the guy said he would drop it off to us and then canceled the date and time to pick it up several times. I offered to take a taxi to his place but he said he would prefer to drop it off. So we finally get it and out four wheeling we go whoopie, except it broke the second day we had it. Took him a couple days to fix it and get it back to us. It had been leaking oil, but he said don’t worry about it as it just leaked a little. I told him it sounded bad, rattled a lot, he says it was just low on oil. Next day the engine blew up and we had to push the dam thing in heavy traffic. Then he tells us it’s our fault because we must have over reeved it (couldn’t have been the fact that it had probably ran out of oil a few times). So we were out $350 as he had given us a $50 discount due to it being delayed on arrival. So now we still needed one. Leiann was not interested in a scooter as the motorcycle traffic here is crazy, bikes flying between cars and each other pulling wheelie’s. So we end up finding another one for $600 (at a dealer) this time, old but has now worked fine for nearly two months. We are often out late to music events so it is nice to have to get back home, not to mention the grocery store run. After being told that there is little to no live music in town we have been able to find some and help promote more. I have been taking bass lessons for a local who speaks little English and my Spanish is terrible, but we have fun. Samana Santa (the holy week in Latin America) is coming up on April 1. We have been warned that is it total loco here that week, don’t expect there to be any money in the ATM’s, grocery stored will be picked clean, no place to park anything, bodies every ware as all of the Dominican Republic all come here for the week. Soooo, we are taking a trip to the capital port of Santa Domingo for the week, everyone says it will be a ghost town as everyone will come here. So we will post some more of that visit next. We have decided to make a side trip over to our home away from home La Paz, Mexico in May as we have many friends there. Stay tuned.

Summer/Fall 2022

01 January 2023 | Sea Tac
Dave Scee | Kool
We are sitting in SeaTac, it's December 31, 2022 and we will board our plane at 11:25 heading out once again on another Chrysalis Adventure. We will spend some time in Puerto Rico and then head over to the Dominican Republic and figure it out from there. We will only be gone four months this trip. This year for the first time in eight years we stayed home for Christmas per our grandson Benny's request and so got to see snow for the first time in years. Next year we will not be staying and will head off to Thailand in September. Our summer, fall and the beginnings of winter have been action packed as usual with lots of fun activities with grand kids, family and friends. We came back from Zihuatanejo last spring, broke the motor home out of storage and within in a few days were settled back in our state side home. We camped out at our kids property several times this summer so the kids could come out and ride dirt bikes, dune buggy, zip line, rope swing, weenie and marshmallow roasting, to their hearts content. Lots of summer sun after spring rains. Go cart racing with boys. Crabbing, fishing and boating. Grandson's football games, hockey and basket ball games to attend and cheer them on. Lots of time with friends and family, a wedding (no funeral). We traded in Leiann Pathfinder for and economical Prius, with gas prices at $5 gal. We also traded in our motor home this year for a 5th wheel that will now be permanently parked on a new lot we bought, which will make coming back and staying a little easier. Winter started with a vengeance, with temps below freezing. We are ready to head back to the tropics. We have a rental car and an Airbnb waiting for us tomorrow. We will certainly be posting some pix of warm sand, palm trees and blue waters just to tease our friends a little. Stay tuned for more Chrysalis Adventures

Zihautenano, Mexico

04 March 2022 | Zihuatenajo, Mexico
Leiann Scee | Nice and warm 80's
Today is March 5th, 2022. I decided I should get off my butt and write up a blog post as it has been almost a year since I wrote the last one, lots has changed since then. I had to go back and reread the last post to see where I had left off. Last year we were in La Paz, Mexico planning our return to the states and planning our trip to Asia in the fall. We were able to sell our boat, car, household stuff, tools and gave away the rest. This was after staying three winters in La Paz. Returning home we pulled our motor home out of storage, picked up our vehicles and were back in our campsite at Thousand Trails within a week as if we had never left. We spent the summer with the family and grand kids going boating, swimming, dirt biking, go carting as well as helped our daughter and son in law clear their property. Lots of great family and friend connections. As is our normal now we freeze when we go home, our bodies have acclimated to tropical climates. As was the case for everybody, COVID was an ever present issue. We got vacs but worried for grand kids that eventually got the virus. Lots of friends also got it and a few died from it. Like everyone else we look forward to putting it behind us. We had planned to head out for Asia this season, but COVID put an end to those plans and travel to Asia closed down. So we changed our plans and headed back to Mexico, however this time a bit further south to a little town called Zihautanejo (pronounced Zee Wat Tin Nay Ho). We had been here on our boat headed south ten years ago. We had great memories of the place and looked forward to coming back. The town was made famous in the movie Shawshank Redemption. It was at one time a sleepy little fishing village like Cabo and many other major tourist destinations in Mexico. Next to Zihua (as locals call it) is Ixtapa a major tourist spot. We don’t spend much time over there preferring the smallness of Zihua. It has grown a lot since we were here before, but is still a small walk-able and safe town. Within a couple of weeks being here we had a hurricane hit (Rick). We spent a nervous night hunkered down in our apartment watching the weather on our computers. We lost electricity a couple times and had no idea how bad it was going to get as it hit Zihua as a Cat 2. The next morning we headed out to explore the damage. Lots of still flooded streets, roofs torn off buildings, trees down, power wires down, but all in all it could have been much worse. Within a few days the locals had everything cleaned up like it never happened. Our first little place was in a local Mexican family “compound” with kids, dogs, grand parents, four families all living there and us. We loved it but discovered one problem we could not live with. The toilet was so close to the wall your knees hit and after Leiann developed bruises decided we needed to find something else. Within a mater of a week we had found better accommodations and rented it till the middle of April when we would be leaving. Leiann wanted to go see the Monarch Butterflies so we set up a trip with a couple friends. We found a tour guide “Carlos” who agreed to take us for a great deal of $300 a piece. We had been quoted $600 elsewhere, so this was a deal. The first day we visited the “copper town” where local artisans have been making copper items, vases, plates, bowls, artworks for many years. The buildings of the town are of the 1600s and are UNESCO protected. Streets are cobble stone, buildings are all white and red with rough hewn timber ceiling beams. Also we visited a beautiful park and waterfalls, arriving in Morelia in the late afternoon. We did not expect Morelia to be what it is, a Spanish conquest dating to the 1500s. A grand square with beautiful churches and a historical area. We could have spent an entire day here alone. But we saw what we could in an evening hitting bed early as we had to be up at 6am to head up the mountains to see the butterflies. After a three hour ride in the van we then changed out to horses to get up the steep mountain (at 10,000 feet) to where the Monarchs return every year after their 2,000 mile flight from the US. For Leiann getting on a horse was a huge deal, first horse ride in 22 years. That is how much she wanted to see the butterflies. We needed to get up there before the sun hits the butterflies. They gather together in large clumps on the trees to stay warm. When the sun hits them and they warm up they take flight in clouds of butterflies, an amazing sight to see. We hung out for a couple hours taking in the experience. Then we mounted our horses and descended a very steep trail with drop offs that Leiann loved, LOL. Then the next day we hit an Aztec temple, a town where they made Katrinas and another 16th century town with a large central park. We had lunch, walked and shopped a little, had ice cream and got back in our van to head home from another great adventure. We spend much of our time here going to live music events in the evenings and beaches in the day. A tough life for sure, LOL. When we had gotten here COVID was at a low point, The Omicron variant not having gotten here yet. We came looking forward to the annual sail and guitar fests. There had not been one last year due to COVID but everyone one was looking forward to this years return of festivities. We got here in October our typical departure date from cold and rainy PNW Washington. But Omicron finally showed up down here and restrictions went back in place. Mandatory masks in public and restrictions on restaurants and grocery stores. The likelihood that Sailfest and Guitarfest would happen were up in the air. Like in the US cases and deaths climbed and fell quickly. The Sailfest was able to happen with some minor limits and restrictions. We volunteered for the event and participated in several activities. Guitarfest however has been canceled. A few musicians that had already flown in are having some small (rather covert shows). We were at one last night and plan to attend another on Saturday. My sister Darcy and her friend Mick came to visit for 8 days so we spent time touristing, added some music events and of course pool and beach time. We will not speak about the margaritas at the pool day. Our friend Richard is here coming from La Paz via boat and will stay a while. Then Geri, Linda and Penny showed up too, so we are keeping them out late and hanging while they are here, doing what we do best, beaching, music, tacos, darts...whatever we can find to keep them out of trouble. The end of March another friend Linda will be here for a short visit. So all in all we have been having a good time here enjoying the warmth. We now have another 5 weeks until we once again make our return to the US. We plan to make the most of it and know we will be missing the warm sun when we get home. We told the grand kids that we would stay home for Christmas this year. After watching all the snow and cold weather they had up there last winter we are thinking maybe we might just do Christmas and then head south. We don’t really want to head to Asia that late in the season so are looking at other options, one being heading to the Caribbean for a few months. We would love to go to Cuba but politics will not allow that so we are contemplating Puerto Rico. We shall see. Lots of time between now and next winter. So there you go, that’s what we have been up to for the last year. Stay tuned for more “Chrysalis Adventures!
Vessel Name: Chrysalis II
Vessel Make/Model: 1964
Hailing Port: Port Townsend, Wa
Crew: Dave & Leiann
After getting together I talked Leiann into buying and rehabing an old Coronado 25. We spent all summer of 2001 rehabing, got married at Bowman Bay (Deception Pass) then sailed into the sunset together. We sailed that little 25 for the next 6 years before buying our Cascade 29. [...]
Extra: Our contact info: E-Mail is
Chrysalis II's Photos - Main
few pix of our time with the big boys
22 Photos
Created 23 March 2024
Photos of Change Mia, Lao and Cambodia
95 Photos
Created 7 March 2024
Jan through April in PR and DR
31 Photos
Created 23 March 2023
Pix of Chrysalis III in La Paz Bay before we sold her in 2020
11 Photos
Created 1 January 2023
The boats sports a new paint job and our trip down
13 Photos
Created 6 February 2019
We head south for Mexico
11 Photos
Created 5 January 2019
Our adventures back home with the grandkids
16 Photos
Created 5 January 2019
Our last days in Italy
80 Photos
Created 14 June 2018
48 Photos
Created 8 June 2018
Our quick trip up to Florence, the leaning tower and a visit with our long lost friends from Panama Lina and Enso
71 Photos
Created 29 May 2018
Our first couple weeks in Greece
117 Photos
Created 8 May 2018
Our two day mad dash in Egypt
106 Photos
Created 8 May 2018
Our last days on the Isle of Love
31 Photos
Created 25 April 2018
Our second month in Cyprus
42 Photos
Created 28 March 2018
Our fist days in Cyprus
23 Photos
Created 31 January 2018
7 Photos
Created 25 January 2018
Our fist taste of Africa
82 Photos
Created 6 January 2018
Nerja caves and Gilbratar
21 Photos
Created 25 December 2017
First Seville blog update
106 Photos
Created 18 November 2017
Little Rome
19 Photos
Created 2 November 2017
Our last day out sight seeing in Lisbon
17 Photos
Created 30 October 2017
Our time in Porto and more lisbon
51 Photos
Created 27 October 2017
Our first few days in lisbon
19 Photos
Created 6 October 2017
our continuing adventures in panama
12 Photos
Created 15 January 2017
Our trip up to the mountain
29 Photos
Created 7 May 2016
Our trip up to the mountain
No Photos
Created 7 May 2016
Our visit to Sacay Huaman ruin just outside of Cusco, peru
19 Photos
Created 18 March 2016
Fun with our friends in Ecuador
41 Photos
Created 25 February 2016
12 Photos
Created 23 January 2016
22 Photos
Created 9 January 2016
Our two month stay in Medellin Colombia
42 Photos
Created 14 December 2015
Around town and casa
19 Photos
Created 18 November 2015
La Paz to Mazatlán on ferry
28 Photos
Created 12 October 2015
Our adventure on the bus and early adventures in La Paz
23 Photos
Created 26 September 2015
Seattle to Ensenada
23 Photos
Created 17 September 2015
Caribbean coast
No Photos
Created 12 January 2015
June and July 2015
11 Photos
Created 31 July 2014
Around the horn and anchor pix
No Photos
Created 19 December 2013
San Juan Del Sur and Granada
70 Photos
Created 1 December 2013
few more
20 Photos
Created 25 October 2013
more stuff to see
20 Photos
Created 24 October 2013
at the ruins and around the town
38 Photos
Created 24 October 2013
Our last few weeks in Guatemala
20 Photos
Created 25 May 2013
piks of above
65 Photos
Created 20 April 2013
more of Guat and clinic
44 Photos
Created 20 March 2013
What else Guatamala and Panahachell
12 Photos
Created 15 February 2013
27 Photos
Created 10 January 2013
Where you find the chicken church and more......
17 Photos
Created 19 December 2012
Our trip into the interior, San cristobal, the water falls and Palenque.
73 Photos
Created 10 December 2012
20 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 15 November 2012
20 Photos
Created 1 September 2012
69 Photos
Created 9 July 2012
40 Photos
Created 9 July 2012
Around the town so far
44 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 10 May 2012
Around town,cliff divers and more
63 Photos
Created 9 May 2012
12 Photos
Created 3 May 2012
Janes vist
41 Photos
Created 10 April 2012
30 Photos
Created 2 March 2012
Pix of the towns and such
No Photos
Created 13 February 2012
34 Photos
Created 8 February 2012
49 Photos
Created 8 January 2012
San Bas
33 Photos
Created 4 January 2012
cool stuff
52 Photos
Created 22 December 2011
46 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 14 December 2011
16 Photos
Created 9 December 2011
around town
29 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 3 November 2011
8 Photos
Created 18 September 2011
Chrysalis II hits the water!
14 Photos
Created 29 August 2011
water maker, invertor, GPS/plotter/sounder, solar pannels
8 Photos
Created 11 July 2011
finally got the cabin painted
7 Photos
Created 1 July 2011
Number one Coast Gaurd safety drogue, well all else falls throw out the drogue and batton down the hatches
8 Photos
Created 20 June 2011
First coat hull paint, primer on the house. Flemming wind vane Deal
20 Photos
Created 20 June 2011
Dryroot removel to repaint
46 Photos
Created 13 June 2011