Sunday, January 21, 2018

Slow News Day!

The day I went fishing, Linda went with everyone out to the Banana Plantation to swim, eat and drink. They must have had a great time because Linda came home and fell directly asleep on the kitchen couch.

I asked her to write up the day but she said that they didn't do anything different from the last two years, I guess that you can look back in this blog if you want to know more about those trips.

Linda did, however, take a couple photos on her phone and I was able to get them downloaded and placed here.

What has been happening since fishing you ask? I came down with a really bad chest cold and Linda has been taking care of me. Today was the first day away from our casa and now I am worn out. All I did was go to the pool and watch volleyball. I do think I have turned the corner. We will see.

No plans for any adventures. I will post if anything comes up. I guess we have started to really be "On Mexico Time."

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

One is the Loneliest Number

Got an invite to go fishing so I jumped at the chance. Linda was with the gang out at the Banana Plantation and due to the invite, we had to split up for the day.

One of our friends, Charles, set the fishing trip up with a new-to-us guide named Cocol. While fishing in the past, I always heard our guide, Gerardo Kosonoy, radio a friend of his named Cocol. Gerardo would use a deep voice and say "Cocol, CocolCocol," over his radio and he and Cocol would share what had been happening fishwise that day. Now that I know who Cocol is, it will make going out with Gerardo that much more fun.

Our fishing crew consisted of Charles, Blair, Ron (of Ron and Marianne) and myself. Sorry for no last names; I do that to protect the innocent. (Plus down here no one introduces anyone using last names.)
Cocol lands Charles dorado.

The four crew grabbed a taxi in Melaque and were dropped off right at Cocol's boat in Barra.

We were out on the water before sunrise and caught a bonito right off the bat. Bonito is considered a junk fish to sports fishermen. They fight hard but only for a short run and their meat is blood red and very fishy tasting.

After Cocol let the fish go, we got back up to speed and immediately caught a dorado. Charles was first up and landed the fish quickly. Great! One in the boat and we just started!
For the next six hours, we got strikes and had runs but failed to hook up and land any more fish.
One lonely fish!

Disappointing to say the least, but fun due to the action and the amount of sea life we got to see. During our outing, we saw a ton of sea turtles, dolphins, one lone seal and a whale!

The seal was sleeping right out in the middle of nowhere. The whale was about a quarter mile off the inlet to Barra and it was jumping all over the place.

I didn't get a photo of the whale because we were pulling our lures in when Cocol spotted a dorado and started chasing it with the one remaining lure that we had in the water. Boy, six hours offshore and we see dorado by the inlet to Barra! We quickly let out two lines but failed to see any more fish.

After about six passes through the area where the fish was spotted we called it quits and headed into the dock. Cocol cleaned the fish and then we caught a taxi back to Melaque.

One fish, but we had a good day on the water.

Below are photos of the shipwreck that is located on the point off Barra. The first two are from today. The second two are from December 2016, the year she first went aground.

January 2018.
December 2016
January 1018.
December 2016.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

A Lot of Friends

It took me 20 shots to get this selfie. 
We hopped on the bus and headed to La Manzanilla this morning. On the way, I sat with a lovely young lady who was new to the area and we chatted about La Manz and this area as a whole. Her name was Sondra and she was adventuring around the area by herself. Linda met a lady by the name of Gail and when we got to La Manz we all found spots on the beach together.

From left - Sondra, Gail, Linda and John K.
Within a half hour, Iris and John, friends from Edison, WA and Langley, BC respectively, joined us and our group got a bit larger. John Karpenko, another friend from Coeur d'Alene, had his sailboat anchored offshore and he and his crewmate, Lucy, also joined our party.

Later on, to complicate things more, John and Liz, more friends from Edison, WA., also joined us with two new friends, Tom and Jessie.

If you are counting, that is three Johns.

We all set up camp at a beachfront restaurant called Fiesta Mexicana. Beers and margaritas were ordered as we all settled in.

Everyone chatted and enjoyed the day. We ate and drank, much like every day on the beach. It was good to catch up with our friends and also find out about and get to know the new folks we had just met.

Beach cocadas, a beach day standard.
The beach was not crowded as it was a Monday. Our usual gathering spot, Pedro's, was closed and that is why we were at the Fiesta Mexicana. The food left a lot to be desired and everyone longed for Pedro's fish tacos. Other than the so-so food, we had a great day.

At 3:30 PM all the bus travelers caught their transportation back to Melaque. Linda and I walked home to our casa and took a swim. It was an early night for both of us. Another great day in the books.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Shore Life

The aquatic life and birds along the shore of the Bahia de Navidad were going crazy all day long. We walked the playa to Casa Rosa to watch the sunset.

One of the locals had caught a net full of little fish and everyone was tossing the bait in the air to the terns and frigates. It was a frenzy of birds and little fish. Linda joined in and used her softball arm to feed a few of the flying wonders.

A frigate was caught on a hand line used to catch the shoreline fish. It was released no worse for the snagging.

Several shoreline fish were pulled in their fate most likely being a frying pan later on this evening.

A beautiful sunset was on display and another day passed. Linda and I walked home and made dinner, showered and went to bed.

Back to Our Little Casa

After a quick stop back to the cold frozen homestead in Idaho, we packed up and our neighbor Steve drove us over to Spokane International. We confirmed all our house guests who will be taking care of things and made sure the place was in order before we left.

The plane was ready to roll, all passengers in their seats and the pilot came on the intercom. "We have a slight problem with the plane. One of the tires has acquired a large gash, and we will have to get it changed. This should only take 45 minutes or so."

Soon we were asked to deplane. Then 4 hours later we were in the sky heading for Seattle, everyone on board hoping that they hadn't missed their next rescheduled connecting flight.

This Alaska Air flight schedule had been a nightmare from the start. It was booked, canceled and rescheduled so many times that we were already scheduled to overnight in LA on both coming and going legs of our trip. Alaska was providing vouchers for that. With the tire problem, our flight got us to LA at about 11:30 PM, a far cry from the 5:00 PM restful arrival of our original rebooked schedule.

As we picked up our voucher for the hotel, the young Alaska manager noted all our problems and tossed in some breakfast and snacks vouchers to make us feel a bit better.

Up early we had our breakfast and bought the $24 of snacks the voucher allowed us and boarded our flight. Everything went smoothly from there and we arrived at the Casa Grande by 4:00 PM.

Things went somewhat quickly at the airport. We flew through immigration, but when we hit customs we also hit the red light. You know the button you push and if you get green you go if you get red you get searched. Well, when we got the red the lady had so many people coming at her in both directions that she told us to put the bags through the scanner and then she walked away. Several minutes later she came back and call on a young man to start up the scanner and finalize our bag check. The fellow was playing on his phone so he ran our bags through and proceeded to ignore us. We watched him text, and looked around. Finally, we grabbed our bags and hurried out the door to a taxi.

Now we are settling in and getting back to a Melaque way of life. A walk in the morning, volleyball at 11: 00 AM, and the day moves on.

We are reestablishing our friendships, meeting new faces and checking out our little home away from home. Life is good!

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Cruise Food

Now that we are home and meeting up with our friends, the stories of the cruise have been told. I usually go on and on about the luxury of the entire experience. The first thing I always tell my friends about is the food and how good it was. I probably talk a little too much about the food experience. I know that because I see it in the eyes of our friends who sit there smiling as I tell then "The food was amazing!", for the fifth time.

So here are a bunch of food photos. They were all taken by our friend Carolina. I was too busy filling my plate to take photos. Enjoy!
Won ton tomato!
Sushi Bar every night!
Sushi King!

Desert Bar every night!

Sushi, even Linda could not pass this up!

Stake so tender you could cut it with a fork!
Prawns and Crab at the Sushi Bar.
Just bread.... Ouch!
Lobster, it's there if you want it.
Did I show you the Sushi Bar?

Saturday, January 06, 2018


Disney Music Center.
Our ship made port at about 5:00 am on the 4th of January. We were set to disembark the next day, so we had a day to explore LA before we had to leave. A cruise provided tour called "A Postcard of LA" was available so we jumped on board. It was your basic bus ride around town looking at spots of interest. Here is a photo gallery of the event. Most all ll shots were taken from a moving bus.
Linda at our restroom stop.

China Town entrance.

Capitol Records building.

Street home.

The only star we could capture. Appropriate!

On the boulevard.

The Academy Awards take place here.

China Town.

One of the main roads in Century City. 

This photo says quite a bit.

Don't walk on the stars.

Linda wanted to shop here.
Die Hard  -  "yippee ki yay"


Monday, January 01, 2018

Cabo Wabo

Sunrise in Cabo!
The last time Linda and I were in Cabo was 17 years ago on a spring break. We rented a condo from a friend of Linda’s and we invited our traveling buddies Rayelle and Mike Anderson. Our week was spent wandering the streets of Cabo and laying on the uncrowded beaches of this travel destination.

The Lands End.
Our ship dropped anchor off the port of Cabo at about 6:00 am. We were up early and were greeted with the most spectacular sunrise of the trip. Jodi, Steve and I were scheduled for a whale watching tour and Linda was going to just go into town, get some sun and then meet me for lunch.

The ship's tenders were all bobbing next to the boat when we arrived and climbed aboard. Once at the dock, we met our tour boat. Finally, filled to the brim, we headed out to the bay for sightseeing and whale watching.

Our first stop was the iconic arch, El Arco de Cabo San Lucas. We were told about the two beaches that are separated by the rock point, Marriage Beach to the north and Divorce Beach to the south. We spotted a seal posing on a rock and were able to get some good photos.

How did he get up there?
Three whales were swimming very close to the bay and we joined about six other boats for our whale chasing experience. A female and two male humpback whales were cruising along the coast on their way north to the breeding grounds in the Gulf of Mexico. Our boat guide said that humpbacks generally swim in straight lines and especially when they are in the courtship phase of the mating ritual.

After our hour or so on the water our boat turned back and headed for the dock. Linda met us when we climbed off the tour boat and we then made our way into the business district of Cabo.

Whale tail.
Speaking to a Mexican walking along the street, Linda found us a taco bar where we could have lunch. I was very proud of how she spoke in Spanish and was able to communicate with the gentleman. As we continued our walk Steve and I bought souvenirs and everyone window shopped our way to Taco Loco for lunch. Taco Loco turned out to be located just outside the bar owned by Sammy Hagar, Cobo Wabo.

Linda and I had eaten at this exact spot back in 2001; it really hadn’t changed much, probably the only place that hasn’t! We had tacos and drinks; it was good to eat some street food.

We took our time walking back to the dock and the tender. Once back on the ship we watched all the tourist happenings around the bay and then enjoyed a fabulous sunset from our balcony. After the sun had set and the reds and pinks in the sky had faded, we walked over to Steve and Jodi’s room and took in the wonders of a phenomenal super moon’s mangata across the deep blue waters of the bay.

Exceptional weather has followed us everywhere we have gone, I don’t think we could have had it any better than we did.

The Viking Sun!

Sunset from our balcony.