It was the best of times, it was the worst of times
29 February 2008 | Zihuatanejo, Mexico
We are still in Zihuatanejo. We moved over to Isla Grande near Punta Ixtapa for several days for a change of scenery. (It's about 5 miles up the coast). And then last week we moved the boat over to the Ixtapa Marina, There we were able to clean the boat with copious amounts of fresh water, charge the batteries to our hearts content, and of course fill the water tanks with (nearly free) water. The other nice thing about marina living is that the boat barely moves in the water. That makes for a very good night's sleep!
Several times while at the marina we got a good look at one of the crocodiles who live in the area. Before the marina was a marina it was a small inland lagoon and home to a number of these guys. So it's only natural that they'd want to come back for a visit from time to time. It was kind of exciting to see one of them slowly drift among the docks with his eyes and back barely breaking the surface of the water.
Also last week we had a wonderful visit from our dear friend, "Uncle" Jake. He booked himself into the Hotel Emporio on Ixtapa Beach. It's a beautiful hotel with a lovely pool. The pool was: kid-friendly but not too crazy. There was a young man employed by the hotel to keep the 5-8 kids entertained with sand castle building, painting, crafts and various pool games so of course the girls really enjoyed themselves. As if that weren't enough the girls convinced us to let them go para-sailing! (Geez, first zip-lines and now this. What's next- bungee jumping?) John, Jake and I had a great time simply lounging poolside. It was a nice respite from the "all-boat, all-the-time" lifestyle we've been living.
During his visit we took a day sail to deliver the boat back to Zihuatanejo Bay. It was a gorgeous sunny day and we were doing nearly 4 knots in a light 7-knot breeze. We began to fantasize about just kidnapping Jake and continuing west all the way to the South Pacific. The wind quickly died and soon we were just bobbing like a cork out there. That's a sure way to put the harsh in your mellow. So we turned on the motor and headed for the anchorage in Zihuat. Bay.
Our first night back in the anchorage was quite pleasant...that means very little boat motion. The next day we were back at the Hotel Emporio (why wouldn't we be?) and we noticed the surf breaking on the beach was much bigger than we'd seen it previously. Basking in the comfort of the hotel's grounds we idly wondered if the increased swell was finding its way into Zihuat. Bay. Boy was it. When we got back to our boat that night the swell was indeed rolling in. Big ocean swell that turned into huge breaking waves as it encountered the shallows near the beach. The result was a rather uncomfortable and rolly night. Early on we were at least fortunate to have the swell running directly to our bow. Then it was just a sleigh ride up and over as it passed under us. But later in the night the boat turned beam-to the swell and that's when the real fun began. The big ones had us rolling deeply side to side, The next day there was some discussion on the morning net as to whether the swell (which is unusual) was being generated by stormy weather to the south (Tehuantepec) or to the north (Alaska). Like we care... we just want it to stop. We've had two really rolly nights now and it's still coming in today. Hopefully it's decreasing and we'll have our nice calm anchorage back.
A couple of notes: we are planning to cross over to the Marquesas sometime in March. The favorable weather window generally begins on March 15th so we will consult with the weather gurus and shoot for on or around that date.
Also- we have uploaded more photos to our Picasa page. Click on the "Our Pictures" link under "Favorites" to the right. NOT the photo gallery, that link doesn't do anything,