Huatulco es Bueno

Well I have been in Huatulco for a week now and have decided I am going to stay for a bit. It is very nice here.

About 20 years ago Mexico decided to make Huatulco into one of its biggest resort destinations… but it had many stumbling blocks along the way. Club Med actually built its largest resort in the world here at one point but then later sold it…

So this place kinda has a “sorta unfinished” feel to it… but it also makes it kinda quaint… it seems to have attracted a lot of younger, laid back sorta people which gives the place kinda a cool flavor.
It is completely different than the hectic, big city lifestyle in acapulco.

I am having such a good time here that I have decided I will stay a few weeks. I have to go to Vancouver the week of May 9 so I think I will fly out of Huatulco (connecting in Mexico City then direct to Van). After I get back I will likely leave the next week and will aim for Barilla’s Marina in El Salvador, where they apparently have high speed internet connections in cabana’s by the pool… so I might be there for a while too!

For anyone who may be coming to Huatulco at any point, the coolest nightclubs here are Mina’s and Papaya’s. I know the entire staff and owner at Mina’s already, so just tell them you are a friend of Jeff’s and they will treat you well… :)

The best restaurants are all in La Crucesita, which is the main town… there are some great restaurants here… one is at the Mission de los Arcos hotel… the food there is incredible… Try the pina pollo salad and the fresh fruit smoothie. Also, the best gym in town is also at that hotel for $25 pesos per day ($2.50).

A SAILING STORY?!?!? WOW!

Well I finally got out of Acapulco. The Mexicano’s quickly came and fixed my electrical problem and I took off outta there on Tuesday afternoon around 5pm.

DAY 1

There was a bit of wind when I first left Acapulco but since last night it has all but disappeared. I sailed while I had the wind but pulled in the genoa when it began flapping and have left the mainsail up (partly because getting it up by yourself is a workout that I only want to do once per trip if possible!).

I slept on and off throughout the night… I only saw a few ships, all tankers. One was about a mile behind me when I woke up around 3am but he seemed to take a wide birth around me so he must have saw me on radar (and/or my lights).

I figured out how to set my radar alarms today so tonight I should sleep even sounder as testing of it today saw it go off whenever a tanker came within 3 miles of me (its pretty cool, it can pick up large ships as far as 20 miles away!). The radar doesn’t seem to pick up some of these small little canoe like boats that some of the Mexicano’s go out and fish in, but if I hit them, it probably wouldn’t do much damage to me… they, on the other hand, would be going for a swim. Those boats don’t seem to stay out much past sundown anyway though, so not a concern.

So far it has been a very relaxing trip… I have used the time to clean up around the boat, and other things such as catching up on email and reading. I have enjoyed being by myself… clothing is obviously optional… so getting an even tan for once 😛

DAY 2

My brain must have been very comfortable with the radar alarm, because I practically slept from 10pm until about 8am, only getting up once or twice, confused as to where I was (I always am like that) and checked everything and then went back to sleep. There were a few ships around throughout the night, but none ever came closer than 3 miles to me (which would have set off my alarm).

I pulled into Marina Chahue in Huatulco at about 10am after having a shower and some breakfast on the boat on the way in.

When I got in there were about 10 people all waving at me and pointing to a slip for me, which was very odd since I had not called ahead and let anyone know I was coming. I found out later that they all had been trying to call me on the radio to tell me that the dredger in the channel into the marina had a cable pulled across and I wasn’t supposed to go across until it was done. My VHF radio is down below and I can never hear it, so I didn’t get their call (Note: I have decided to get a handheld VHF for future issues like this). But my cat only draws about 3ft so luckily I never hit the cable or it would have really chewed up my props.

The 2nd reason there was quite a few people there was that a catamaran HAD called in and said it was coming in, so a few of them were out to help it tie up…

I ended up taking his spot before anyone realized I was the wrong cat… but it was nice to have this whole welcoming committee to help tie me up.

So I am here now at a web cafe… Huatulco seems like a small, really nice town… everything here is new (nice paved roads etc) and it looks like they are trying to make it into a larger resort.

I will definitely stay a couple days but then may leave either Sunday or Wednesday (depending on weather and a few other factors) to head south for Puerto Madero (the southernmost port in Mexico, 14 miles from the Guatemalan border) where I will likely just stop to refuel (and maybe anchor and nap) and then will continue on to El Salvador where there looks like a totally awesome place called Barrillas Marina (http://barillasmarina.com) where they have internet hookups at the pool and stuff like that.

That’s it for now… oh the only other thing I might add is I had my lunch lines out (fishing lines, but instead of fishing line it uses rope basically.. so when it catches the fish it just yanks them right out of the water with no risk of the line breaking) and didn’t catch anything but when i pulled one of them out this morning, one of the hooks was TOTALLY bent back and had what looked like tissue from a mouth around it… WHATEVER bit this thing was HUGE… like maybe a shark?? I used pliers and couldn’t pull the hook back into place, that is how big and hard the hook is!!! I am kinda glad it didn’t stick cuz I am not sure what I would do if I caught a shark… me and Ceebz had a hard enough time beating up 5 pound skipjacks!

Here is a pic of me on the trip for those of who you can’t get enough of looking at me 😛

Hmmm… boat caught fire, may delay trip

Well, I was all excited today getting ready to go and then my boat caught fire.

Well, it didn’t totally catch fire, but where the electrical cable connects to the boat there was a smell of burning and then the power on my boat didn’t work anymore. When I looked at it, it had really burned the cable… coulda been a full fledged fire by the look of it.

Don’t know why that happened… might have something to do with the 2 new a/c units drawing too much power (they draw 11 each, so 22 combined… and I have a 30amp power system, so they do push the system pretty hard)… but a circuit breaker should have popped instead of the boat catching fire (or so I understand how these electrical things work).

Well, the Mexicano’s will come tomorrow and look at it. If this takes longer than a day or two to figure out I will really start to lose it… I was so stoked about hitting the ocean…

So… Sail-less in Seattle (Acapulco) continues…

FINALLY ready to roll!

The air conditioning and generator are all done… finally! My boat is sooooo nice and comfortable now. So, I am going to leave Acapulco tomorrow and likely stop in Huatulco, which is about 200 miles south. That will take me approx a day and a half, or maybe a bit longer if I sail the whole way and there isn’t great wind.

This is my first solo journey, but I am not too worried about it. Really the only times that extra people come in handy are so that you can have separate watches, and for docking… seems like most of the hairy times I have had come when we try to dock.

It will definitely be an interesting experience to be sleeping while sailing… as all of us drive cars, the concept of sleeping while you go just doesn’t seem to make any sense. But, in the entire 5,000 miles I have sailed so far, I could have slept the whole time, in reality, as we never really would have hit anything… the ship pretty much steers itself with autopilot and GPS.

I am going to see how I feel… if I get to Huatulco and feel up to it, I might just keep going to the very south of Mexico… there is one dangerous area that is just after Huatulco that extends for about 150 miles called the Tehuanapec, which can have major winds come out of nowhere, but I have been watching the weather and right now it looks totally calm there (the worst weather there is usually from December to March, so I have missed that window), so if it is calm as I approach Huatulco and I feel up to it, I might just keep going.

So, on Tuesday I am off again and will update soon after.

This is the most boringest blog evar!!!1

Yes I know, you are wiping the tears from your eyes as you stare into the worst blog ever with disbelief. Is he really only typing in a new entry every month or two?? What’s with this guy?

Well, the problem has been that I have been stuck in Acapulco for MOOONTTHSSSS now. However, here is the good news, they have been working fulltime on my a/c and generator for the last week and even had the a/c semi-operational the other day, giving me hope that one day it might be done and I can keep moving!!

Everywhere I go in Acapulco people wave to me now and many of them even know my name. This is very uncomfortable for me as I prefer to be completely anonymous, so I am itching to get out of here before I become a resident!

If things go well, I may be able to take off as early as next week. Zabaneh is coming down to Ixtapa (150 miles north of Acapulco) this week and he might come check out Acapulco for a day or two, so if he does I might hang around a few extra days… but if I have anything to do with it, I hope to be on the water by April 10… next stop, Huatulco… after that Guatemala, El Salvador, Costa Rica and then finally Panama. I would really like to be in Panama by the first week of May and then I will have to go up to Vancouver for a few days on business, and then come back in mid May and begin heading north towards the caribbean.

That is the plan. Whether it happens or not is a completely different story.

I hope my next entry comes from Huatulco and beyond as my boat and I are growing moss.

If you are wondering what I am looking like nowadays, here is a pic of me on the beach in Acapulco, looking for dried up dead fish on the beach to eat and begging for change (joking)