Back to the ‘tita

After Barra, the “Kid Posse” (Sugata, Sassona and Theophilus) returned to Tenacatita for about 5 days. Now that the sun is even higher in the sky, the solar cooking conditions are fantastic. One day we made “deckadillas”, which are quesadillas cooked on deck.

The water had warmed up just a degree or two, but that was enough to make swimming more enjoyable. Everyone has said that this year is much colder than last year, and indeed, we have spent much less time in the water than we expected. After being a bit uneasy swimming off the boat, Koiya’s fear kicked into high gear after another cruiser told us about some nasty jellyfish. She wouldn’t go in without another person already in the water, and she’d only jump in next to the swim ladder, to be back on the boat within seconds. Well, somehow in Tenacatita she got over her fear, just like that, even swimming from boat to boat all by herself! She seems to be in one of those blossoming phases that kids go through, when they lose teeth, grow taller, and outwit Todd at games requiring mental agility.

The kids all decorated Easter eggs on Sassona, and Koiya brought hers back to Sugata so we could have an on-board egg hunt on Easter morning. While hunting on the bowsprit, Koiya discovered a dried-out fish tail, stuck to the railing of the bow pulpit! She thought it must have been left by the Easter Frigate Bird. Later, when she found some chocolate eggs, she pieced the puzzle together more completely: the Easter Booby had made the chocolate eggs, which the Easter Pelican had carried to the boat in his pouchy throat, then the Easter Frigate came along and left the fish tail in the hopes of getting credit for the chocolates.

One morning, Toro came to me and confessed, “Honey, we need to do something about my dirty bottom.” I wondered what had prompted his sudden concern. “I’ve got green fuzz and barnacles growing down there,” he explained. Luckily, Captain Ron on Theophilus let us borrow his hookah (air compressor) so that we could dive on the bottom and scrape off the offending growth. What a relief!

Theophilus bought hot dogs and marshmallows for a wieny roast on the beach. They have marshmallows in Mexico that are the size of tangerines!

We also made the dinghy trip up the jungle again. Koiya was excited to snorkel with and pet the puffer fish, while Capn Pacifico was excited to purchase his supply directly from the “cerveza truck”.

We were blown away by the crowd of people on the beach! The place had been practically deserted last time we were there. We wondered where all these Mexicans came from? Guadalajara, apparently. Easter break last for two weeks down here, and everyone heads to the beach.

We listened to the weather forecast and Don Anderson said that there was a four-day window of light breezes, some of the best conditions for going north around Cabo Corrientes. Of course, we’d prefer to sail on a southerly wind, but that didn’t seem to be a possibility anytime soon. So, even though it meant we could be under way on our birthdays (Toro’s is March 28, mine March 29), we decided to give it a shot. Dave on Sassona quipped that it would be our “Birthday Bash” (since we’d be bashing our way north against the wind and seas).

The Kid Posse left together, and though we had to motor-sail the 25 miles to Chamela, we had better luck than the boats that had left the previous day (they’d encountered strong headwinds and rough seas). We saw lots of sea turtles, including a couple with birds perched on their backs. We also saw two large humpbacks with a baby, and whole schools of small manta rays swimming in formation. Koiya was thrilled!

Toro and Koiya were amazed when, upon arrival in Chamela, I made sushi for dinner. It was actually pretty easy, since I’d cooked the rice in my solar cooker the day before. But poor Capn Clumsy! His last piece of sushi slipped from his chopsticks and bounced off his shirt and shorts before landing on the deck, leaving soy sauce stains everywhere!

The next day was Toro’s birthday, but he requested that we celebrate it at a later date, because he was distracted by the seemingly unpredictable weather, and the possibility that we’d leave that evening. Still, I made scones for breakfast and croque madame (ham/cheese/egg sandwiches) for lunch, and Koiya fixed his coffee. The crew of Sassona sang us “Happy Birthday” over the VHF, and Jordyn made us a yummy birthday cake! We all swam over to Sassona to eat it. You meet some great people cruising!

The wind settled down, so Toro hauled in the anchor and we got under way just as it was getting dark. Once outside the bay, we were briefly visited by dolphins. By the time Koiya got her life jacket and harness on, they had disappeared. I sent her below to go to sleep, but she soon reappeared. “I hear squeaking!” she exclaimed. “The dolphins must be back!” I thought it was just her vivid imagination, but we went to the bow, and sure enough, there they were! They dove and darted, glittering with phosphorescence! I told Toro it was his birthday show.

I headed below for some sleep. When I got up shortly after midnight, Toro greeted me warmly. “Happy Birthday, honey! Here’s the helm!” Oh well. There are definitely worse ways to spend your birthday than watching the moon rise over the Pacific!

Though there was a little headwind, we were lucky to round Corrientes under motor, with calm seas. As conditions were good, we decided to press on to San Blas/Mantenchen Bay. The wind swung around off our nose, and we had a wonderful day of sailing. Plus, I got a birthday dolphin visit too. This time it was daylight, so Koiya could positively identify the Pacific spotted dolphins. And best of all, there were several babies in the pod! They were so cute!

Click here for Tenacatita/Chamela photos, and video of Koiya being dragged behind Captain Ron’s dinghy on a boogie board:

20080323Tenacatita2

3 Responses to “Back to the ‘tita”

  1. Pat says:

    Do you sometimes get the feeling we’re not alone?

  2. Dave says:

    yay for full story rss feeds. oh and nice updates too. looks like lots of fun!

  3. Imagine Friends, Sandy Andy and Emma says:

    Happiest of belated Birthday wishes to the Captain and First Mate!
    Andy, Sandy and Emma

    PS Susan, you are the epitome of a great writer!

Leave a Reply