La Paz, Otra Vez

We came back to La Paz on Dec. 15, and pulled in to the swanky Marina Costa Baja. This place is a marina and a resort, and we have access to the hotel’s beautiful (but unheated) swimming pool. It is about 20 minutes away from downtown La Paz, but there is a free shuttle service that runs frequently. They also gave us a cable modem, so internet access has been fantastic! Todd even played CounterStrike online with his nerd buddies.

Koiya’s favorite thing about the place is the trampoline in the playground. She got in quite a bit of jumping before flying back to SF on Dec 18. She even tried to teach Capn ADD a few moves, but he was too distracted to focus on her coaching.

There is also a “Beach Club” here, for use by the condo owners. We went in once but apparently we didn’t look like we belonged there. A guy explained to us that we could talk to the marina office about buying a membership for $20/day. We looked around a bit, and since there were only a few other people there (and no one in the pool), I asked if we could just stay and have a quick swim. He agreed. We set ourselves up on some lounge chairs and read a bit. Todd decided it would be nice to give the restaurant and bar some business, so he went and asked to see a menu. The guy wouldn’t show him one! He said we should really talk to the marina office and get a membership. We were like, “Buddy, your club is so exclusive, there’s no one here! We’re trying to give you some business and we’ll tip you!” Anyway, Todd felt unwelcome, so I took a quick swim and peed in the pool, then we left.

A lot of the boats that we met on the way down are here at Costa Baja, including Passat II. We went out to dinner with Barry and Sandra, whose company we always enjoy. They had already discovered Rancho Viejo, and they love it too! Todd got adventurous and, on the advice of our favorite waiter there, ordered an arrachera/tripa taco (flank steak and tripe). He said the flavor was good, but he had a hard time getting over what he was eating.

We were pleasantly surprised to run into some other friends down here. “Tanya” used to be Todd’s landlord and was also our real estate agent. Last we’d heard, she and “Melody” had sailed to the Marquesas. Then we saw that their boat was for sale in Tahiti, so we wondered what was up. Turns out they bought not one but two other boats (one bigger and one smaller), so they are currently a three boat family! The are also building a house in the mountains, and sometimes living in a trailer… I don’t know how they do it! It was great to catch up with them, and they also took us to a really fancy restaurant (Las Tres Virgenes) with amazing food. What a cool couple!

Another highlight of this stay in La Paz was going out to lunch with Eduardo Palacios and his family. My brother Steve went to graduate school with Eduardo, who is from La Paz. They are warm, wonderful people. It was really cool to meet some locals, and they took us to a great seafood taco restaurant. Capn Otro Mas had 5 tacos!

Right now, a strong north wind is blowing, but it is supposed to die down enough tomorrow to give us a chance to get out to the islands again. It will be a little strange to be out at anchorage at Christmas, but we’ve gotten a fair bit of holiday spirit here in La Paz. The other night we walked around downtown, and were struck by the universal excitement you can feel right before Christmas. Just like in San Francisco and Konstanz (Germany), the streets were bustling with happy people, rushing about in the winter twilight, buying last minute gifts. There was even a chilly breeze, and lots of traffic, making it feel just like home!

Todd took me out to a restaurant called La Pazta for our “fancy” Christmas dinner. After we placed our orders, he started complaining that our guidebook had said the place was “moderately priced”, even though the entrees were in the $10 – $15 dollar range. I had to remind him that there were restaurants that charged a lot more. “After all,” I said, “You spend $150 when you go out with the guys for one of your steak dinners. You never spend that much on me.” Without missing a beat he said, “Oh, I’ll spend 150 on you tonight honey… 150 pesos, that is!” Even I had to admit that was pretty funny.

Koiya is back in San Francisco until Jan 3. We miss her! You can see video of Todd and Koiya on the trampoline, as well as pictures of some cool sand sculptures, here:

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Feliz Navidad y Prospero 2008!

4 Responses to “La Paz, Otra Vez”

  1. Katie McCall says:

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

  2. Melissa Foster says:

    Feliz Navidad!

  3. Mike says:

    Happy New Year !

  4. Uncle Bumper says:

    How’s the spearfishing down there? Maybe Bachan and I will buy one of those packages (with beach club access!!!) and come see some whales. Will you still be there in a month or so?

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