Archive for the ‘Mexico’ Category:

Acapulco and Huatulco

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

We’re now approaching the part of Mexico with the difficult-to-pronounce Aztec names. It took a lot of practice to get “Zihuatenejo” to roll off my tongue. I’m presently in Marina Chahue in Huatulco.

My last night in Zihua, I got very sick. I awoke in the middle of the night and hurled howling vomits into the head. Because I had no headache, I knew that I had a case of turista, or Montezuma’s revenge, instead of a mean hangover. I knew I’d have trouble convincing the rest of the boat of this and I knew that I’d wake them with my bellows. I usually know the instant that I lay my head down if I’m going to make it through night after drinking. My head will spin and I can’t fall asleep. When this happens, I test myself by leaning towards the toilet. If the revulsion of being that close to the toilet makes me vomit, then great. Out comes the bad stuff and I immediately feel healthy. If it doesn’t, then I tough it out and drink lots of water in the morning. This time was different. This was a stomach-sickness, not a head-sickness. My stomach was trying to expell everything, in whichever direction it could. Even when it was empty, it tried to push out more–the miserable dry heaves. I went back to sleep and repeated the process in the morning. I was dead weight the next day. I slept nearly the whole day and ate almost nothing. The fear of having to expell food in an unpleasant manner killed my appetite. The next day, however, I was more or less back to normal.

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Saturday, November 22nd, 2008

It took 48 hours to sail to Zihuatanejo, what once was a quiet town just east of Ixtapa (the Pacific’s version of Cancun) and a couple hundred miles west of Acapulco. Although the population of the successful town has steadily increased in recent years, the town still maintains a small village feel and is worlds apart from hotel high-rise Ixtapa.

When the sun was rising and Zihuatanejo on the horizion a mere 20 miles away. The wind came to a standstill. Actually, it blew just enough to be annoying. I was alone at the helm and jib got back winded ever so slightly. It wasn’t much of a problem because we weren’t moving–just annoying. I turned the helm all the way to the opposite direction, but the sail would not correct itself. There was not enough momentem for the rudders to even have an effect. Frustrated, I fired up the starboard motor. No sooner had I started it, I heard our fishing pole start to reel. Initially I was thinking, “we caught a fish!” I turned around to see the fishing line pointed down to the propellor. Because the boat turned and there wasn’t enough speed, the line was underneath the propeller and got tangled when I started the engine.

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Mazatlan and Manzanillo

Saturday, November 15th, 2008

It took two days to sail from Los Cabos to Mazatlan. The wind was coming from the South and it was a nice beam reach almost due East. It was just the three of us: Gary, Larry and me. I thought it would be more taxing with less crew, but it wasn’t a problem. The wind came and the wind went. I can’t really keep track of what it does anymore. If it’s too slow for too long and we lose our patience, we motor a bit, but not too much.

From farther than 36 miles we could see a strobe light flashing on the horizon that marked Mazatlan. It was the quickest flashing frequency I’d seen. It gave me a seizure looking at it for too long. We finally made our way into the harbor at 2am. Gary checked in with the Port Captain via VHF. The free anchrorage is just on the inside of harbor, right by the breakwater. Anchoring wasn’t a problem the first night but the evening of our second night, we started to drag and boat next to us started hollaring. The anchorage wasn’t luxurious by any means. We were in the industrial part of Mazatlan, which is its own city, aside from tourism. On land the next day I could smell the stench of a nearby sewage plant. There are nicer options in the area, but they cost money. Read the rest of this entry »