TUESDAY, JANUARY 01, 2008
Jacaranda Passage Notes #17: Mazatlan Feliz Año Nuevo!
It's been ages since we have posted an update so well take advantage of it being January 1st to wish everyone a very Happy New Year and all the best of health and joy in 2008!!
Like last year, we spent the summer in Boston with our son Joe. Boston rocks and the summer time is a great time to be there. Linda traveled back to Boston in early July and I followed a couple of weeks later after preparing Jacaranda to survive the hurricane season. We had been in Mazatlan installing our new engine and awaiting the interminably delayed opening of the new boatyard to complete the work. Mazatlan grew brutally hot by the time we left. Most everyone had departed for cooler climes by then; we bought an air conditioner and joined the few cruisers who were still onboard their boats in Marina Mazatlan, hiding below during the day in air conditioning and popping up like Meerkats from their burrows in the evening when it got a bit cooler.
After last summers residency there, we found the familiarity of Bostons South End very comfortable and filled with recognizable places, faces, and old haunts. Linda rented a room in a home in a South End brownstone for July and August but we needed to be out by Sept. 1st. Accommodations beginning in Sept. are tough in Boston as 300,000 college students flood the city. Kay, our previous landlady and now very good friend from last summer (known for guiding great local travel explorations we dubbed Kays Forays) introduced us to a friend of hers who had a brownstone up the street. We made arrangements with Addie to fix up one of her vacant flats getting it ready to rent in exchange for rent. It worked out great for us and also for Addie. We departed Boston Nov 1st and drove down to Lindas cousins house outside of Philadelphia (adjacent to her aunts Farm). Chuck and Ros were such wonderful hosts and we so enjoyed our month there. We stayed to attend the annual family Thanksgiving celebration on The Farm and always love our reunion with everyone (including son David who flies in from San Diego).
Linda and I returned to Mazatlan the beginning of December from Philly. Jacaranda survived the hurricane season in good shape and was well looked after by Ruben, the Mexican diver whom we hired to check on her every couple of days.
We shifted into overdrive as the new boatyard was now open and hauling boats out of the water everyday. We scheduled a haul out to have the bottom painted while I attended to replacing the prop shaft, installing a cutlass bearing and getting the new engine connected. The new yard is very posh with an immaculate concrete hardstand area, swimming pool, Jacuzzi, laundry room, cruiser lounge, wifi, huge shower rooms etc. Believe us when we say you can lounge in the pool and look down at the workmen toiling away on your boat!
So we have the new engine hooked up and running everyday at the dock trying to get 50hours on it for service before departing for points south. All seems to be good with the installation now and the new enlarged prop is able to get the engine up close to its rated specs. We will know more when we get away from the dock and are able to do some sea trials.
Early Christmas morning brought an expected Christmas present. My sister Maureen and her husband Buzz sailed into Mazatlan on their boat Encore. They had been delayed leaving San Diego due to poor weather and really had to push hard to get here for Christmas. They are in the slip right next to us and the proximity reminds us of our raftups together in La Playa in San Diego ..so we have been enjoying the holidays with M&B and are able to chat from boat to boat. They are headed to Ecuador soon so we do not know how much time we will be able to spend with them in Mexico. We are hoping to maybe travel a little south with them but it all depends on when we are able to get away.
We are getting a late start in the cruising season so our plan, provisional as always with us cruisers, is to head down to the Gold Coast, 300-400 miles south where the living is easy and hang out in various anchorages. Hopefully son Joe will be down to visit; older son David just started a new job and vacation time is nonexistent at the moment. In early spring our plan is to head north into the Sea of Cortez and see where we end up.
We were glad to escape the East Coast before the snow and were looking forward to warm weather again but it is considerably cooler here than we anticipated. Now we are too cold with lows in the upper 40s at night.unseasonably cold. We have pulled out all our cold weather clothes including wool blankets and a sleeping bag. The heater has been fired up for the first time since November of 2005! We watch the disappointed vacationers on the beach shivering in their bathing suits, thinking they are either from the far reaches of Canada or just determined to do what they came down here for.
Have a safe and especially Healthy New Year (as one of our favorite people in the know writes: With healthy you have happy!).