Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Punta Mita, Sayulita, and La Cruz

We left Paradise Village and motored over to La Cruz shipyard and marina to take a look at our propeller, thinking maybe there was some fishing line wrapped around it that we couldn’t see underwater. When the boat came out of the water the prop looked perfect! If John and Luke hadn’t decided to dismantle it and put it back together, they never would have determined that the locking mechanism was broken and an over-pitched prop had been our problem all along. Hallelujah we solved our engine problem! And as my father pointed out, Perky had been maligned. Proppy had been the culprit the whole time.

With our problem solved, we rented a car so we could explore the surrounding area. Some friends of John’s, Kate and Simone, were holidaying at the Four Seasons in Punta Mita, so we went to visit them for a day. The resort was at the end of a private road and the grounds were exquisitely manicured. It was noted that the place was so exclusive that it didn’t feel exclusive because the excluded people were so far away one was hardly even aware of them. We spent the day lounging on the beach (with no vendors to bother us), enjoying complimentary ice water, chilled towels, and ice cream brought round by friendly waiters.

When we got hungry we went to the hotel’s cafĂ© and savored a fine lunch by the beach while whales breached all across the bay. As tasty as our salads and sandwiches were, they were hardly worth the $300 bill that landed on our table when we’d finished eating. Yes, that was in dollars, not pesos. Shocking really, considering we had been able to stuff ourselves with outstanding food only thirty minutes away for less than $2 a person. But it was a lovely day all the same.

Later that week we drove north to the town of Sayulita. It’s a small bay with a long surfable wave, ideal for beginners, so the town was pretty well populated with visiting, as well as expat, gringos. The expats were easily differentiated from the visitors because Sayulita appears to be a sort of bohemian mecca, with much of the resident population fitting that description. It is the kind of place where you might see two white people with dreadlocks in one day.

Heavy rains during the summer had caused the river in Sayulita to flood, taking out many small buildings along its banks. This was not much of a problem for us until Luke went to use the men’s room . . .

. . . and was dismayed to find it out of order.

On the beach we found an umbrella and chairs to occupy while we soaked in the sun and the local beach scene, which was a far cry from that of the serene Four Seasons. John tried out three different chairs before he found one that wasn’t broken. He finally settled himself into it with his book when, after a hopeful five seconds, it collapsed. I had to take a picture.

Later we had some yummy fish tacos in the center of town (dinner for four was less than $20) and wended our way through the crowded streets looking for a good place to have a margarita. People of all ages were out enjoying the night; the open-air restaurants were all full and delicious smells wafted from roadside trucks serving tacos or churros or diced chilled fruit. It was a charming place to visit.

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