Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Matanchen Bay to Chacala

After several lovely days in Matenchen Bay, aside from the pesky, biting “no-seeums” that found us at the beach-side restaurants in the late afternoon, we had a delightful 23 mile sail down the coast to the village of Chacala. We anchored with 3 other boats in the small bay shaped by jungle-covered hillsides and a beautiful sandy beach. The simple community was cute as can be and is a popular beach destination for people from several larger inland towns and a number of American and Canadian citizens who own vacation homes there. The next day, we took a short bus ride to the town of Las Varas, about 6 miles away, where we were told we’d find a bank with an ATM to replenish our supply of Pesos. The trip proved interesting and gave us the opportunity to see some of the beautiful, hilly countryside and the town that seems off the tourist, beaten path. After our bank business, we explored the town and had a delicious lunch at a local eatery. Back at the beach, we joined Howard and Lynn from the boat “Swift Current” and Dave and Marissa from “Pacifico” for a drink at one of the palapa restaurants. On a previous outing with them, Howard and Lynn mentioned that they’d never seen the corny but classic move “Captain Ron”. Before long we were all aboard “Swift Current” sharing appetizers and drinks while howling with laughter at the movie.

Our last day at Chacala was full of activity with Mark hauling Anne to the top of “Blue Rodeo’s” mast twice to re-reeve a new halyard and remove and replace our wind speed and direction sensors. At some point in the last two weeks, a bird had landed on the fragile device and broken a portion of it. With the unit down on deck, Mark fabricated a new plastic replacement for the damaged section and Anne reinstalled it on her second trip up the mast. Two trips were also made to shore to drop off and pick up laundry and purchase a few supplies. In between, we circled the bay on our stand-up-paddle surfboards and stopped by “Swift Current” to give Howard, Lynn, Dave and Marissa a chance to try them. The day concluded with a pot luck dinner for the six of us aboard our boat. We all agree that meeting new friends and sharing our adventures is probably the best thing about the cruising experience. So far, the daytime temperatures have been perfect and the evenings have cooled-off pleasantly. We slept well again that night gently rocked by our planet’s largest ocean.

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