Posted by: Sailing Camelot | April 14, 2011

Wed April 13th

Ok, we got lazy, I admit it. We’re still in La Cruz, tied up to a very comfortable dock at Marina Nayarit. We keep finding new excuses not too leave, since really there’s no rush… BUT, we are now looking at April 22nd as our departure date.  So hopefully there will be worthy updates following soon!

But in the meantime I’ll tell you what we’ve been up to, in no particular order…

We spent a lot of time in great company. We have been going very often for breakfasts and dinners to Ana Banana’s, where most of our friends gather. 

Breakfast at Ana Banana's

Maru (left) and Ana (right) made sure we were well fed every day

One day Tom extended an invitation to the owners Barry and Ana and a small group of other friends to go out sailing on Camelot. And so it was that on March 27th, another gorgeous day in paradise, we all went out on Banderas Bay to sail in no particular direction, just following the gentle breeze wherever it would take us. It was a very enjoyable experience. There were ten of us: Barry and Ana, their son Lalo with his wife Flor, Crazy Mike, Texas John, India and Terry.

Barry, co-owner of Ana Banana's

Ana (left) and her daughter in law Flor (right)

Meet Crazy Mike. He's not really crazy, he just wants you to think he is!

Terri (left) and India (right)

Conversation flowed freely, but we also enjoyed just the occasional quiet moments when all you would hear were the Sounds Of Sailing: the gentle flapping of the sails, the sloshing of the water against the hull, the cries of the birds above us and a few splashes on the water when a whale decided to breach. Relaxing. What a great day it was, one for the Memory Treasure Chest.

Unidentified Friend trailing along for the day


In the meantime…

Many of our neighbors at the Marina have been preparing to leave for French Polynesia, which started a whirlwind of celebratory dinners and heartfelt farewells. One particular night stands out. We were part of a group of 25 people, 8 of which were children ranging in age from 6 to 13, all going to a nice restaurant for yet another “bon-voyage” dinner. The kids got restless pretty quickly, so were sent off to the little and very modest amusement park. La Cruz is a very safe small town and Danielle, the 13 yr old wise “old” soul, was in charge of the group. After an excellent meal, Tom and I needed to stretch our legs and left the other adults at the restaurant, heading for the local plaza to check on the kids. We found them there, all huddled in a circle, calmly debating. As it turned out, they didn’t have enough money to go all together on the bouncing castle. So instead of separating, they decided that nobody would go. Upon hearing of this very mature decision, Tom offered the money necessary to send them all (a very small sum). More debate-in-a-circle followed, but the kids decided that they couldn’t possibly accept Tom’s money. Tom insisted. They declined. Tom finally found his long-dormant “cop voice” and “ordered” them to go buy the damn tickets and start bouncing on the castle, “right this minute!”. In a flurry of squeals and giggles they all finally went, leaving Tom and me to marvel at the maturity and respect these very young kids showed. Got to be a side effect of growing up on a boat! Anyway, they had a good, long time having fun. Once off the bouncing castle, Tom gathered them all around and with the same don’t-mess-with-me voice ordered them in a single file, youngest in front and oldest in back. “Where are we going, Tom?” asked Pari, the youngest. “To the ice cream parlor!” said Tom. I was laughing so hard my sides ached! So here we go, marching to and invading the local ice cream parlor. The owner saw us all coming and his eyes got as big as saucers;  in an incredulous tone he asked Tom : “Senor, todos su ninos?” (are these all your kids?). That did it, I started howling in laughter… Tom said “no, todos amigos” (all friends), sweeping his arm to include two little 4 yrs old Mexican girls who were playing with our group and followed us. So in a very orderly manner every kid got ice cream, and every kid made it a point to go thank Tom first and then me for the treat (including Maria and Rosita, the little Mexicans). I was thoroughly shocked! I was NOT expecting manners and appreciation… Made me feel all fuzzy and warm inside…

The reason behind my (temporary) insanity

During these last few weeks we also took a sightseeing trip here and there. Mainly, however, I spent 10 days with my nose glued to the sewing machine… I took upon myself the challenge of making dinghy chaps (the protective cover for our small inflatable boat). It’s something I wanted to do for a long time but always found excuses not to start, fearing I wouldn’t be up to the daunting task. I ham happy to report, however, that the blasted chaps are completed and in place. And they don’t look half as bad, either! Turns out I was able to do it, even if I didn’t think I had it in me. Tom spent those days making himself as small as possible and staying out of my way, not an easy task for him. I guess he was thoroughly intimidated by my multi-language, incessant swearing. I was a soul possessed!

From Start

To Finish!

One fine evening Tom dragged me away from the boat for a nice dinner and live-music entertainment. The rock band playing was excellent and I found myself staring at the bass guitar player. Rather, staring at his hands… I have to explain my fixation. Years ago I owned a shiny, candy-apple-red bass guitar and was painfully trying to learn to play it, deriving alternatively frustration and pleasure from it. Tom’s younger daughter, 16 yrs old at the time, in no uncertain terms told me “Lori, you suck, why don’t you just quit!”. Well, between that and the upcoming move to full time living on the boat, I got rid of my music equipment with a heavy sigh of resignation. However, seeing this excellent musician tickled my old ambition, and in conversation I mentioned to Tom that I wish I’d kept the darn noise-maker machine! He just smiled and said nothing, and I soon forgot the whole thing. Two mornings later Tom insisted that I accompany him to Ana Banana’s for breakfast and he really had to work hard at it, since I was already buried in my sewing work. But I went, complaining the whole way. Once there, I found a present for me laying on a table . A beautiful bass guitar! Exactly the same as my old one, just in a different color! Complete with carrying case, amplifier and a very cool strap: yellow, with bold black letters that say “police line – do not cross”. I was so touched I had tears in my eyes and was babbling incoherently. Talk about a surprise!  How on earth did he find it, but most importantly: he’s willing to tolerate my terrible strumming –on a boat!-. That earned him untold amounts of Brownie Points.

Another morning, to stay out of my way, Tom left the boat carrying his pressure-washer and disappeared for about 6 hours. He mumbled something about volunteering his equipment and services to help clean the tables and cement dance floor at Ana Banana’s.  See, I have very little to recount of my own, but Tom sure kept busy!

Last week, I think it was Friday Apr 8th, two good friends took us on a road trip. Bless them, as I desperately needed a break! Texas-John and India drove us all the way across Banderas Bay, through the town of Puerto Vallarta and up the surrounding hills, hugging the coast. Spectacular views!  

My Travel Buddies looking at Banderas Bay from a different angle

Postcard Close-up view of the Coast

We were headed to the village of Boca de Tomatlan, where India lived for about two years after leaving the United States a while back. There is a beautiful river called the Horcones River that flows into the Bay, and that’s where the village of Boca quietly sits. We stopped briefly along the way to see the river before it reaches the sea.

The Horcones River

Clear, Cool Waters!

Once in Boca we spent some time sitting at the beach, a thin strip of sand that divides the river from the sea. It was interesting, we had a snack and refreshments simultaneously by the river and by the sea! This little town is truly a sparkling jewel and a very well-kept secret.

This is the River Side, looking to the Beach and the Bay

The Beach at Boca

 We also met some interesting characters. It has been quite a few years since India lived there, yet there was a constant flurry of friends coming to say hello, to catch up with her, all so very genuinely pleased to see her. It’s amazing how warm and friendly these people are! It was a wonderful day, we thoroughly enjoyed it and are so very grateful to John and India for driving us around and showing us places we would never have found on our own.

No one can resist her! This is India, charming a little Monkey

John, Driver Extraordinaire and Overall Thoroughly Nice Guy

The next day Tom’s lower legs were covered in bug bites: the infamous “no-see-um’s” signature mark. These are insects so tiny you don’t see them, but they are ferociously vicious in their assaults, leaving behind nasty welts that itch beyond belief. I got maybe just half a dozen and they’ve been driving me crazy. Poor Tom had about 60 on each lower leg, from knee to foot. The itching and subsequent results of manic scratching got so severe that it was necessary for Tom to take a 3 day course of antibiotics, abundant doses of antihistamine and frequent slatherings of Aloe Vera to make life bearable. Guess who got to play Nurse Betty…

You may walk on water, but you still have to SPRAY yourself!

Yes, we were warned…  Don’t leave home without bug spray and use it! Especially at dusk and near water… Now we learned our lesson, the painful way. It was scary to see my sizeable husband, usually so full of life and good cheer, all beat up by invisible enemies… Thankfully he’s almost 100% recovered. I guess we’ll be stocking up on various kinds of medications for our upcoming summer… just in case!

So this is what we’ve been doing with our time so far. I’ll be quiet for a few more days, now. Maybe the next time you read our news, who knows, I might even tell you how I’m doing with my bass guitar… Just be grateful you don’t have to listen! Messages of sympathy and commiserations can be directed at Tom, I’m sure he’ll appreciate them… Until the next ranting, be well!



  1. I feel your pain, Tom. Those no-see-ums LOVE me too.
    We’re off to the boat show this weekend to win some more prizes from the Latts & Att’s raffle.

  2. What a life. Glad all is well. Look forward to hearing you on the Baja Net soon.

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