Looking for a Catamaran Cruising Blog?

If you found this blog via a link from a cruising site ~ we did cruise Mexico on our Ocean 49 cat for a season. See the first text box on the right for links to our preparations, trip down Baja, life in Mexico, cruising and trip back up to SoCal. Unfortunately we are back to the grind in the USA...

Friday, October 31, 2008


For ONCE one of these silly quizzes was right!
I do one of these oh every six months or so, and they always come out lame, stupid, not me, blah, blah, blah.
Like the dog one ~ I would not be a German Shepard or a pit bull even though my ex-boss called me that more than once, I would be a beagle (lazy, creative, wanting to travel and hating to be cooped up).

But YES if I absolutely had to, I could probably sing this song (not necessarily in public however).

Your Karaoke Theme Song is "Margaritaville"

You are a true party animal, but your style is mild and chill.
Kicking back with a few friends and a few drinks is all you need to be happy.
You certainly don't feel pressured to be a part of any party scene. In fact, you avoid trendier spots.
You've been known to kick loose anywhere and everywhere. All you need is a cooler.
You might also sing: "Gin and Juice," "Love Shack," and "Red Red Wine"
Stay away from people who sing: "Wind Beneath My Wings"

Except that back in high school college, my sister, Donna and I changed the words to:
Wasting away again in Sloe Gin Ville
Searching for my lost bottle of 7up
Some people claim that there is Matthew to blame
Because he is the one that sold it to us

And that's how I would probably sing it.
With the wrong lyrics.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Halloween History!

Halloween has to be one of my favorite holidays!
I love to create a costume ~ I always make them or put them together.
Can't deal with the store bought things.
They are just not creative to me.
I usually have a story to tell in my costume as well.
I do buy the headband things though ~ I have a whole collection of them and wear them at every opportunity I have!
Easter, St. Patrick's Day, Halloween, a birthday, a Friday, lunch, whenever...

Three of my closest friends have birthdays the same week as Halloween, so we wear the headbands, rotten teeth, masks and whatever else I come up with on their birthdays too!
This is celebrating Dave's 50th birthday a few years back at Disneyland.
And the Halloween week birthday people are (except me, but they allowed me to go along, because I am the one that buys all this crap):
Jim (Shrek), me (black widow), Daveyboy (devil) and Cherryl (angel - what else?)Shrek and the Black Widow (we wore these for two full days at Disneyland)Cherryl and meOne year I was a Titanic Survivor (kind of fitting, being that I lived on a boat)...

Complete with dried seaweed in my hair and hanging from my ripped up dress...

Then we had Cherryl's 50th Birthday Bash and out came the black widow headband and shrek ears once again.
Me, Jim and Marvin (who had tried on about 100 hats, ears and headbands by this time).Jim and Dave in fine form.Ooookaaaayyyyyy...
There is a really, really long story that explains exactly why I am dressed up as a big, fat pig.
Something about me holding Pinky the pig ransom.
By the way Dan ~ you still owe me $52,798,854.27 So seeing that I had not received my ransom payment by the next Halloween, I dressed up as Dan.
Who had recently had eye surgery and also had fallen and broken his foot.
Can you tell which one is me and which one is Dan?I'm getting pretty good at sewing fat suits!

Then another Cherryl birthday celebration ~ wine tasting!
Cherryl, Me and Nancy.Kind of hard to taste wine with masks on, but Jim and I managed alright!Mary, me and Cherryl heading to Santa Cruz Island for the Island Packers employee goof off trip.Wait!
That wasn't Halloween!
How'd that picture get in there?
Oh yeah, I will wear something Halloweeny or goofy for any function...

So Happy Halloween all!

To Torment For Kellie

Sarah Palin's boat is in La Paz!Quick run for the hills!

Boat Finally Back to "Pre-Hurricane" Form!

The party cockpit lights are finally back up!My tikis, grass skirts, coconut drinks, assorted cocktail glasses, pink flamingos and fishies are back where they belong.
Providing happy, ambient lighting in my cockpit.
Providing people in dinghies who pass in the night a laugh.
Providing me with peace and joy (really they do!)...

Only in Mexico...

Only in Mexico would you see a small panga and an old ski boat from the 60's moving a barge.Successfully moving a barge.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Interesting Read

Found another interesting cruising book!
And no bug holes in it either!
About a woman who was widowed in 1927 with five young children.
She would cruise the Vancouver Island / British Columbia area each summer on her 25' power boat.
With all the kids.
Without a man.
Before GPS.
With really basic charts.
And lots of tides and weather to deal with.

If you can find it somewhere, we recommend it!

For Stanwich Stan-The-Man!

The Malecon in La Paz has to be the nicest Malecon in Mexico!
Two and a half kilometers of beautiful walkway along the waterfront.

Interesting sculptures dot the curving walkway.

They recently added slowly changing lights to highlight the sculptures!

G-Dock tradition (one of many) is to stand in front of the man searching for a boat and pose like him.

My Mom (honorary G-Dock member) even posed.

Stan appeased me and did it both times he was here with us.

Stan likes this guy.
This post is for Stan.

Friends Boats in High Places

Well la de da!
Look who who's boat made the cover of Ventana Magazine?
That's right, look again.
Look closely.
Just to the left of center.
Blue sail cover and light blue dinghy cover.

It's "Sweet Lorraine"!

Too bad that one piece of cactus is covering up part of the name...
But pretty cool all in all!

I Didn't Need TV Last Night Either...

Here we go again!
This time the lightning started to the West of us and "bloomed" towards us, passed overhead then went out into the Sea.
Quite the bloom for the end of October!Then the rain started!
Loads of rain for about an hour.
I sat and watched while Jim slept.
I started counting the seconds between the lightning flashes ~ the longest gap was 9 seconds.
The shortest was less than 1 second.
3-4 seconds.
Lightning, count to 3, lightning, count to 1, lightning, count to 4, lightning, count to 1/2, lightning.
Some directly over head.
One loud enough over two fans in our stateroom to wake Jim.
One loud enough for me to pour the remaining Nun Booze over ice.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

One Down, One To Go...

Jim and I turned in our FM3 paperwork to the Mexican Immigration office last week.
Same exact paperwork.
Same exact day.
Same copies of bank statements.
Same letters from the marina.
Blah, blah, blah.
Our file numbers were sequential.
We pay the bank fees at the exact same time.
The nice lady in the office told us to come back in a week.
No mention of any particular time, just next Monday.
So we go yesterday and are too late.
They only help the lawyers after 1 pm.
Even though the homeless guy who was in line in front of us was helped.
So we go back today in the alloted time for stupid idiotic gringos and can see that Jim's FM3 has been issued, but they can't find my file.
Twenty minutes later they find my file.
And ask us if we paid for both.
Yes - see the receipts.
But you only paid for the assessment, not the actual FM3 fees.
Okay - no mention of that last week.
So back to the bank, pay both of the second fees.
Back to immigration.
Here are the new receipts.
So then they use a gluestick to stick Jim's picture inside his FM3.
A gluestick.
Uh yeah, that's going to last a year in this heat.
They give Jim his FM3 and tell me to come back in a week.
What - do they have to send my FM3 to the only typewriter left in the world in Guadalajara or did they run out of the little green passport books?
Does it take a week to type up a quarter of a page of information?
Or maybe the typist only works on Fridays from 2 to 4 pm.
Oh, I get it now - it's Mexico.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Who Needs TV When You Have Lightning?

We have had a GREAT lightning show tonight out towards Isla Cerralvo!
With a perfect view looking straight out of our cockpit.
Before you look at the photo attempts, REMEMBER we are on a boat.
A boat moves.
A boat moves even if it is tied up in a marina.
Putting a tri-pod up and walking away won't even help.
The boat will still move.
So I skipped the tri-pod and used the mono-pod Tim gave me (thanks Timay!) and hoped for the best.
Which didn't happen, but you still get the idea!

Some bolts have gone in a horizontal line across the sky.
I saw one that went in a circle!
One that looked like a giant pitchfork with 5 or 6 prongs.
And one that was a triangle...
I don't recall ever seeing quite a show like this one.

And the best part?
It was far enough away so we couldn't hear the thunder.
Which means far enough away so it won't hit our mast!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Five Boys and Me ~ aka "Bloody Decks"

Five boys and me I went fishing today!
Almost all of my favorite boys in La Paz ~ we were missing our nephew Johnny (but since he isn't even six years old yet, he probably would have been totally bored).
Jim (hubby), John (bro-in-law), Ricardo (best friend in Mexico and our business partner), Ricky (son of Ricardo) and Chumbo (other son of Ricardo, who's real name is Juan Francisco) and me.
Me, being the only girl.
It was almost seven or eight boys and me, but Daniel (Ricardo's nephew), Alejandro and his son (friends) couldn't make it.
Probably a good thing for me, not being too outnumbered...

So motored out the channel and came within 2' of a turtle, who looked very familiar.
Lots of grassy stuff growing on him!
Could he be the one we saved?

Ricky, Chumbo and Ricardo enjoyed sitting on the bow.We motored through the San Lorenzo Channel (I have been through this channel more in the last week than I did in our three years of cruising) to the dorado grounds.

First we caught some skipjack to use as bait.
T H E N...
Here we go again!
First Chumbo reels one in.But it didn't want to be caught and got off the gaff.
Uh oh.
Uh oh!
Uh ~ we better catch some more...
Then Ricky had one on.Here we go again, again.
Grab the gaff!
Grab the vodka!
Grab the baby seal beater winch handle!
Grab the trash bag!
Here comes the fish!
Here comes the blood.
Oh crap, did we have to have the blood part again?Ok, these dorado are going wild, so now we toss them into the cockpit before taking the hooks and gaff out.
So instead of bloody decks, it's really bloody cockpit.
But happy boys!Chumbo did not want to put his feet down into the bloody gooey cockpit floor.
I, being the only girl, did not blame him.
Ok, so here we go again, again, again.
Ricky gets another.Apparently Jim feels there is not enough blood on the decks so gaffs this dorado's artery.
Then flings him in the cockpit.There are blood droplets half way up the radar arch...
Now do you get the second part of the post title?

All this fishing tired Chumbo out, so he took a nap.

And Ricky drove the boat for awhile.

We actually woke Chumbo up to pull in the next one!Then after it was tossed into the ice chest with the others, he immediately went back to sleep and slept until we were back at the dock.

So, 4 dorado made it into the ice chest.
We had 5 to the boat and one got away (with a gaping hole in his belly).
And a total of 8 hook ups ~ one being a huge one as it snapped the line immediately.
Probably a good thing, because can you imagine the blood in a huge one?

Saturday, October 25, 2008

No Name #7 Back to La Paz ~ Take The Long Way Home Day

"Someone" (we won't say who) wants to fish the backside of the islands really bad.
Keeps bringing it up.
Talk of dorado, wahoo, tuna.
So the "other one" finally agrees (actually I said ok pretty much right away).
So anchor up early on Friday and we motored up the rest of the front side of Isla Espiritu Santo and Isla Partida.
Motored around Los Islotes and it started getting pretty lumpy.
There wind in the Northern Sea must have been blowing pretty good.
This made for not the most comfortable rides.
One thing I love about the Sea of Cortez is the flatness it has so much of the time.
This wasn't flat.
It wasn't bad, just not my idea of a relaxing trip in.
But eventually we heard one of those "ZINGS" our fishing poles make.
And then a jumping DORADO back behind the boat, doing his best to unhook himself.
Here we go again...
Get the gaff!
Grab the pole!
Ok, enough of this whacking them in the head with a winch handle (one more thing to clean), let's try the vodka in the gills trick.
Get the vodka!
Pour it in.
Hey - that stunned him.
Get the trash bag.
Put him in.
Put in cockpit.
Uh oh, he's sobering up.
Get the winch handle.
Whack, whack, whack.
Back to blood everywhere.
Jim cleans up this time.Motored along the backside of both islands.
A different view than the frontside with all of it's anchorages, coves and beaches.Then we start catching skipjacks.
A couple at a time.
I even had to take one off of the hook this time.
Oh well, one 3' dorado was worth dealing with a few skipjacks...
Motored back thru the San Lorenzo Channel and in to Balandra to clean the dorado and rinse ourselves off.
Then back to the marina...

But wait, there's more!
As we motored past the Pemex plant (Mexico's gasoline company) we got a laugh.Ok, I understand the "No Smoking" thing on a giant ship that carries oil, gas or some flamable liquid.
But really... come on?"Prevent pollution"?
Ha ha ha ha ha!!!!!

No Name Cove #7 ~ Small Fish Aquarium Including Baby Medusas Day

Up, coffee, listen to weather.
Whoa - deja vu back to cruising life!
I read in the cockpit and then swam a few laps around the boat.
Looked over at "Sweet Lorraine".Looked at the cliffs.Read some more.
Went back in the water.
Ate some lousy lunch.

Time to snorkle!
Got our gear together and headed over to the North West point to explore.
The water was a perfect temp of 84.5 degrees ~ gotta love that!
Lots and lots of small fish ~ bright blue damsels, sargent majors, little red ones that would sit on the rocks, a big school of striped "rat patrols", black fish, gray fish and a bunch more that we don't know what to call them (as if black fish and gray fish were official fish names...) and my favorite little tiny jellyfish or "agua maleys" (bad water).
Ouch on my arms.
Ok, after about 10 ouches I said enough and we headed back to the dinghy.
Welts on both arms, so back to the big boat so Jim could squeeze limes on the welts.
A lime later, all better.

Took a little nap.
Jumped in to rinse the lime juice off my arms.
Read, float, read, float until time to clean up and head to "Sweet Lorraine" for another great dinner!
Kellie's stuffed mushrooms, steaks, baked potatoes and my grilled red, yellow and green bell peppers with onions and pineapple!

Looked at our boat from their boat.Then enjoyed another evening of watching the stars and planets from their cockpit.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Bonanza to No Name Cove #7 ~ Dorado Day

Up ~ me finally feeling better ~ Yipee!
I even had some coffee.

Jim pulled up the anchor and headed out to the fishing grounds.
Motored around a bit ~ a little windy and lumpy at first.

Then a "ZING"!
Jim pulled it in and COLOR!
It's a DORADO!
Grab the gaff!
I hold the pole and Jim gaffs.
Then gaffs and gaffs and gaffs and gaffs.
The fish avoids and avoids, swims under the boat and avoids some more.
Finally gaff success!
Slippery on the deck.
Blood everywhere.
Put the dorado in a trashbag in the cockpit.
Jim drives and searches for more.
I clean the starboard deck.

We search for splashes, search for birds working, search for activity and ZING!
Caught another!
And it's another dorado!
But caught on the line on the other hull.
Another elusive one ~ she gets gaffed on the first try, but spits the hook out and slides off of the gaff onto the deck and tries to slide back into the water.
Not going to happen...
Jim bellyflops onto the fish.
Blood everywhere.
I grab the hook.
Grab the sliding away gaff.
Blood everywhere on Jim, me and the port deck.
This dorado goes into the trashbag with the first dorado.
After we we? did I say we? hit this one on the head with a winch handle.
So Jim drives the boat again, and I clean the deck again.

We meet up with "Sweet Lorraine" on the other side of the Channel and head up the island.

Now the boat line gets a fish!
Pull, pull, pull the line in (just a line out, not on a fishing pole with a reel) and grab the gaff again, oh yeah, color again, another dorado!
Pull, gaff and now there is blood everywhere on the first deck I cleaned.
Had to use the winch handle again...
More blood.
New trashbag.
Jim drives once again, and I clean the starboard deck for the second time.
Ok enough of this, but a record for this boat!Whale.
Lumpy as we make our turn towards the island.
Watch out for the whale.

In to our favorite cove and wait for Dave and Kellie to make sure they like it before we anchor.
They like.
We anchor.
And now we we? did I say we? have three fish to filet.
So out comes the fish, filet knife and blood.Now we have blood everywhere in the cockpit.
I somehow got out of cleaning this time...

Time for a swim / float!

I made brownies and prepared the sour cream, dill, mint and caper sauce for the fish.

Dave and Kellie come over for hora feliz and a wonderful dinner of fresh dorado, salad and garlic potatoes!

Watched the planets and stars come up.
Another beautiful night at a beautiful island.

La Paz to Bonanza, Isla Espiritu Santo ~ Save A Turtle Day

Well, lucky me ~ something made me sick and I was up at 2:30 am getting sick.
I do not like to throw up...
So we had a lazy start to our trip.
So lazy we didn't even take the two broken air conditioners off of the boat.
At least we were smart enough to put the headsail back on the evening before!

So out of the marina at "sometime" and motored along the coastline.
Jim had two lines out and quickly caught a sierra!
Amazing ~ we caught a fish we could actually eat!And for once, no skipjacks!

I read and tried to sleep for awhile, as I was exhausted from the night before and not 100% yet.

Jim motored through the San Lorenzo Channel so he could fish (we had heard there were dorado out there!) and I relaxed.

He noticed a turtle floating, so I got up to see it.
We noticed it had a big white thing floating next to it.
We circled the turtle and saw that this was some kind of PLASTIC gunnysack type bag attached to the turtle!AAAAAAGGGGGGGHHHHHHHH!
We watched the turtle for a few minutes, as we thought he was probably dead.
He finally poked his head up and looked at us!
So Jim maneuvered the boat so we could drift down on the turtle and snagged the plastic crap with the boathook.
The plastic was wrapped around the turtle's flipper and neck.
I handed Jim the filet knife and he grabbed the turtle's flipper.
Jim had to halfway lift the turtle on his side to get to the plastic.
The turtle's head was just a few inches away from Jim's hand and he just looked at the two of us with his big wet eyes.
We were a little concerned that he might bite Jim, but we kept talking to him and hoped he understood we were trying to help him.
Jim was able to cut about 95% of the plastic off of his flipper and the rest drifted off of his neck.
This is what we ended up with.The turtle floated for a few minutes, then put his head back up, took a look at us, then swam down about 10 feet and came back up.
Who knows how long this plastic trash had been holding him on the surface...
He was probably exhausted and starving.
Hopefully he had enough energy to find food, because we sure didn't have any spare jellyfish laying around the boat...
He looks better without the plastic!KARMA BANK DEPOSIT!

Jim fished around some more.
No other keepers.
Saw some rays jumping though.
In and anchored at Bonanza (the SouthEast end of the island) for a change!

The view back to mainland Baja was beautiful!

We both read, floated in the 84.5 degree water to cool off, I tried to take a nap, read some more.
Jim made us cheese omelettes and english muffins for dinner (I still wasn't feeling good) ~ a perfect dinner!
Listened to the SouthBound Net, enjoyed a little of the beautiful evening, then to bed.