Friday, March 27, 2015

Too Hot To Blog

The high has been 95 (99 inside the boat), the low 84.  If one has air conditioning in the boat, it is likely they will remain inside.  That being said, it is a bit too hot to blog…so here are a few photos to help tell what we have been up to this last week.



We visited the archeological sights in El Salvador.  The most impressive was  Joya De Ceren, the Pompay of Central America. 

Bucket takes a rest after some archeological hiking.







Hey! Did you hear something or someone working outside the boat? Wholly cow!  The dock is giving way to the tide!

Homework

Clam Diggers

Today's restaurant of choice for lunch today



New Friends  (Bucket, Cesear, and Bird)

THE clams……Ten for a dollar

Pick a fish…any fish  5, 8, or 10 dollars

Shrimp dinner…..8 dollars

Let's learn to fish, Salvadorian style


A vulture rest stop…

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Check This Out

We are in El Salvador for the rally.  Check out one or all of these sites:

Website:  Elsalvasorrally.com
Forum:    Cruiser.Elsalvadorrally.com
FaceBook:  Annual Salvador Rally
Email:     Elsalvadorrally@aol.com


Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Birthday Gifts

 Do you think he knows how fortunate he is?  I am here to help him realize he is one blessed five year old.  Zayden had a great day.  Thank you to everyone who participated in making his day extra special.  

     He received virtual birthday cards from his Unker and Auntie Sylvia in Idaho and his good friend Mary Erba in Nevada.

     He received birthday wishes through email from his family around the world. 
     Thank you:

     Grandma and Grandpa Smith in France



     Grandma and Grandpa Collier in Idaho and best buddy Caleb
     Great Grandma and Grandpa Dietz in Utah
     Carlee and Jaicee
     Aunt Hopey, Jaiden and the rest of the Reitz family
     Aunt Linda and Uncle Gary in Parma
     Aunt Shawn and Uncle Gary

     He had a great birthday party with the cruisers and friends here in Bahia Del Sol in El Salvador, Central America. He was surrounded by cake, balloons, squirt guns, a piƱata (filled with countless goodies of toys and little treasures), swimming pool, and best of all the laughter and love of genuinely good people.


A Boat Hook for a Bat and a Bag for a Blinfold….
Sailors…..we know how to improvise



     Thanks to:

     Jean and Bill (organizers of the El Salvador Rally)

     Steve and Tina and Billy and Grace (S/V Seahorse V)

     Anne and Russel (S/V Molhini)


     Steve and Debbie and Libby (S/V Delphinia)




     Malcom and Laura (S/V Thistle)


     Rita and Anton (M/V Albatross)


     I can't thank you all enough for making his day the best 5th birthday EVER!
     You bring us joy beyond words.





Thursday, March 5, 2015

Random Thoughts and Recalls As We Get Ready to Depart Mexico

      It is not so bad to send your laundry out and have it come back clean and nicely folded smelling like a dream.  In Mexico it is not only common, it is the only way.

     The toilet paper is scented, it smells like Johnson's Baby Lotion.

     Sunscreen and bug spray triple in price at 16 degrees latitude and below, and it is kept behind the counter so you have to ask for it and pay for it in the pharmacy.

     Wind and weather information is usually incorrect.
  
     Eggs are never refrigerated and stay fresh for 3-6 months and the yolks are extremely fragile.

     Raw chicken is yellow (some say it is from the food they eat).  It is hard to get used to.

     Beer is cheaper than water.

     I have found to be the oranges the ugliest on earth, yet the orange juice is the BEST on earth.  Jugo de Naranja, Nada Mas.

     Authentic ceviche is made with raw shrimp/fish.  The meat cooks in the lime juice and is ready to eat in 20 minutes.  DE-LISH!

     Piedros, a palapa restaurant on the beach in Manzanilla, claim to have the best fish tacos in the Universe, we can't say it is not true.

     Milk is sold primarily in cartons in ultra-pasturized form.  Milk bought out of the cooler is only good for 5-7 days.

     The paper towels biodegrade before they get the job done, it is possible T.P. would be more beneficial.

      Where are the seals, sea lions, and crab?

     All bras, regardless of how big the cups are, are labeled 34B.

     When fishing for Dorado or Marlin it is best to use light colored lures in the daylight and dark colored in afternoon, evening.

     The sunsets are stunning and indescribably beautiful.

     The word "rope" translates into "clothing," not "rope." and "escusado" is "toilet," not "excuse me."

     I was told that taxes are not paid on a building until it is fully constructed, 99% of the buildings have exposed rebar out the roof.

     While still not his favorite, Scott will eat a dish containing cilantro without complaining.

     Mayonaise, instead of parmesan is the norm for topping a pizza.

     Scott has developed an immunity/tolerance/liking (call it what you will) for mexican picante spices.  Salsas and dishes that burn my lips off and leave me panting like a hot dog have zero effect on him.

     Scott walks around town barefoot and spends most of his time shirtless.  

     The people are extremely friendly, eager, and willing to help in any way possible.

     A little sign language and sound effects go along way in communication.  Completing the Rosetta Stone program would have made me look like a genius.  

     Street tacos ROCK at three for $2.00.  Pinas Relleno (stuffed pineapples) Rock AND Roll! This is a new favorite mexican dish.

     Enriques Resturante in La Cruz gets 5 stars for food, drinks, setting, prices, and service.  There should be an "Enriques" in every town.

     *PLACES TO VISIT AGAIN*

Turtle Bay (Bahai de Tortuga)
Mazatlan
Nueva Vallarta (Paradise Village, where Scott discovered he has a taste for Dirty Monkeys)
Tenecatita
Barre Navidad (Where the "French Baker" is a blessing with tasty bread, quiche, pastries, and dockside service.)
Manzanillo
Isla Grande

Zihuatenejo

Tehuantepec

     Chiapas…..our final stop in Mexico, then we will be exploring new territory in Central America.  The tour to get to Chiapas from Huatalco is a 48 hour trip, and it requires extra planning.  It required extra planning because we would have to cross Golfo de Tehuantepec as the wind and weather permitted. The Captains of the two vessels (Velvet Sky and Seahorse V) had been  monitoring the weather for about ten days to plan the passage. Scott was using three weather sites that I am aware of, passage weather.com, zyGrib.com,  and magicseaweed.com.  The agreed upon day and time to begin the passage was March 2nd at midnight, however a weather check at 23:45 (fifteen minutes before departure), prompted us to hold off until 05:00.  We were underway at 05:20 and while adjusting the halyard on the mainsail, the halyard made a one in a million loop around the radar reflector.  The solution we could see at the time was to go up the mast and un loop it.  The seas were a bit rolly and neither one of us was fond of the idea of breaking a leg or falling around trying to grab the mast.  We called Seahorse up ahead and informed of our problem thinking we may have to turn back and wait for the next window.  Several ideas were thrown out and a couple of solutions attempted with no prevail of freeing up the halyard from behind the reflector.  We did, however, improvise.  Scott rigged the spare halyard (not completely main halyard worthy) and yanked up the sail.  We were underway with plenty of time to spare.

     The trip started out rough.  I was certain that Velvet Sky had transformed into a wild mare and we had become her bareback riders as she bucked and kicked in the semi confused seas.  We made it through the morning and into early afternoon then everything calmed down and relaxed.  We ended up with one casualty, our first broken dish, my coffee mug.  I was sad and cried.  I am sure the crying part was an accumulation of emotion that had occurred throughout the day, it felt good to let it out.  Scott might have thought I had lost my mind and still showed sympathy for my grief, assuring me that we can replace the mug.

     We are into the third day now, with 7 hours left of the tour.  We have yet to be strictly under sail.  The motor has been on or idling the entire time.  I suppose it is better than being in 40 knot winds.  The plan was to leave Huatalco and hit the timing just right to catch optimum sailing conditions.  We are through the Golf of the Tehuantepec safe and sound.  Nature has surely made up for the lack of sailing.  The sun rose on seas of glass.  We were surrounded by sea life.  Turtles, hundreds of turtles.  Floating turtles, swimming hurtles, turtles with birds on their back, large turtles, small turtles.  We were a part of tortuga paradise. The looked like rocks floating on the crystal blue water.  The rays were jumping and flipping out of the with the joy of a new day.  March 4th morning has become a good memory.  Later in the day, after lunch, we called together a swim party with the Seahorse V tribe.  We were within 5 mile of each other so it was easy to move close enough, put the boats in neutral, jump into the deep blue and experience the feel of the tropical waters that the turtles were delighting in.  15 25.26N 93 43.06W  21 miles off shore…..the most clear, blue-est, and warmest water I have swam in.  This is now rated one of the top 10 amazing things I have done.  I believe Scott and Bucket feel the same. We had a nice fresh water rinse (We made 30 gallons of fresh water today) in the cockpit after our little jaunt about  and got back on course to Chiapas.  
The friendly neighborhood dolphins….can you believe the clarity of the water?

Bath in the cockpit 

8-11 watch 

8-11 watch, day 2

Turtles, turtles, everywhere turtles 

Laundry (underpants) underway

Washed, rinsed, hung out to dry

This is AWESOME!




Seahorse V joining the swim party in the middle of the ocean




     Last night we were able to see the southern cross constellation, that was cool too.  It is 23:52 now, my watch ends at 02:00.  It is cloudy and not many stars are visible, although the moon is full and when it comes from behind the clouds, the night lights up like it is day time.  The wind is holding steady at 2.7 knots (in turn the motor is set at 2200 RPM), our course is 123 degrees, position 14 55'.99N  092 58'.40W our ETA is March 5, 2015 at 07:20.