Saturday, February 12, 2011

Killin' time

As we are waiting to get our auto-pilot fixed back in Seattle of the United States, we are exploring La Cruz Mexico and the surrounding areas. So far, we have taken the 45-minute bus ride to Puerto Vallarta a couple of times for boat parts and other exploring.

1 of many fantastic sculptures at Puerto Vallarta

We had supper at the Mariscos El Colequita with a group of about 20 friends. This is a quaint restaurant at the top of a hill along the beach where they serve all the following for 109 pesos each (less than $10 Cdn): a bottle of Tequila on the table, tacos and salsa, shrimp cup-of-soup, choice of delicious main-meal seafood dish, dessert of banana flambe, and finale of Kahlua and milk. Definitely a place to go to!

One night, Jordan decided to play poker with several other amateurs at a place called Brittania. He lasted till around 01:00 for an evening of fun and limited amount loss! (One other night he played with the Mexican pros who play from 22:00 till 08:00 (yes, 10:00 pm till 8:00 am) and they bluff ridiculously. He didn't do quite as well that evening, but he had fun till 03:00.

We heard a gentleman on the VHF (Ron on SV Encounter) talking about music, movies, and audio books. We connected with him and copied about 14,000 songs, over 15 audio books, and about 200 movies onto an external hard drive - ALL of which we can play on our stereo through our MP3 player or watch on our DVD player, which means no use of a high-power computer. (These movies can also play directly on TV from the external hard drive but we do not have a TV on Sea Turtle.) I think we are now set for a long time for music, movies, and audio books!!

Vegetation grows like crazy here and small trees grow to gigantic sizes in only a few years. Nice to see grass in many places too, something that is hardly ever seen on the Baja side.

Colourful planting at the marina

We watched a comedic acrobatic show in the marina that was spectacular. Two young adults performed tremendous feats of acrobatics aboard their boat that amazed the crowd; they will be performing in Vancouver (Canada) in the near future. They had two different acts - one at 17:30 and one at 19:30 - both of which we attended.

No, he did not end up in the water!

At 19:30, we attended their night show, but it was becoming quite windy so unfortunately they cut it a little short...

They have very fluid acrobatic movements that you can see in any circus, I suppose, but it seems more spectacular seeing it performed on a boat as the boat is always bobbing and not stationary like a stage, making it much more difficult.

The Sunday markets at La Cruz are pretty fantastic - full of bakery, produce, clothing, and craft items. We always fill up with bakery and produce - especially the quiche! And one vendor created a turtle outline into a round piece of coconut shell that Jordan then inset the pearl that we bought at the Guaymas Pearl Farm last year to make a beautiful necklace for me.

Coconut with pearl inlay

After several weeks, emails, and phone calls, the part for our auto-pilot was finally delivered on February 10th!! We sure learned a lot about how-to and how-not-to deal with Mexican customs when sending an item across the border to be repaired.

Firstly, get papers from the aduana building (Mexican Customs) stating that you are sending an item to be repaired so that you will not be charged exorbitant duties on a "new" item when it is returned.

Secondly, in the event you didn't do the outgoing paperwork, when your repairman is sending it back, have him mark a lower value on the paperwork than what the item would be worth (if you were buying), or you will be charged duty on the amount that is marked on the paperwork.

Thirdly, have the item sent to a common address that is EASILY found by the courier company. And lastly, be patient, it will take a long time.

One good thing about being here for this duration was that we were able to get some good boat chores and upgrades done (upgraded bilge pump plumbing with new through-hulls, upgraded our pactor modem, etc.)

We celebrated our good fortune by joining other cruisers at a bonfire on the beach. Then the next day we went to Puerto Vallarta to get last-minute supplies and fill up with groceries as we get ready to head south. Our first stop will be Yelapa, a short hop across the bay...

1 comment:

Diane, Evan and Maia said...

Safe journeys you guys. We'll bookmark you so we can keep up on your travels. Here's our blog: