Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Spinning in Circles

After I finish typing this post I am going to walk back to the beach, row to the boat, and sail off the hook heading south.  I have had a tough time trying to understand my motivations for doing another pass through the South Pacific.  I ask myself, "Are you doing it for that metaphorical "book"?" and the answer is no, there already is plenty for the book.  For the non sailor, hearing those words, "sailed around the world" is quite enough.  What is a few more thousand miles after you have done that!  They wouldn´t understand that the point where I am is much tougher.  One of the reasons why it is tougher is that there isn´t much dream left.  I already know what the cruising life is like. Another reason why I am doing this has been suggested by others who accuse me of doing this to meet women.  For all the bachelors out there thinking that the salty single handler sailing the south seas image would enhance their odds of success, forget about it.  Most of the South Pacific is a time capsule for the most fundamentalist religious behavior.  It ain´t like it was for the crew of the Endeavor.  And it is too hard to get to for your average backpacker.  I certainly am not doing it for the lavish lifestyle.  The bank account screams to get back to California now and forget about all this nonsense PLEASE!  Otherwise you will end up like this guy absolutely flat broke "foraging through abandoned native gardens."  (Note that he wrote an actual book - I wonder if he thought about how he was going to write the chapter on foraging as he was actually foraging???).  Basically if I don´t catch fish, it is TVP.  Canned food is a complete luxury.  One trick I learned about budget cruising that I am going to have to exercise more now is from Teddy Seymour and it is to not stop at so many places.  Route planning is a lot more complicated than a lot of people realize.  You want to stop everywhere but single handling is loads more work making landfall than it is on passage.  It is hard on the gear and also hard on the wallet with the associated temptations of land and ever present check in costs.  Am I doing another pass through the South Pacific to delay the eventual return home to California?  Returning and having to explain yourself to people that haven´t a clue.  "And exactly when again was your last professional work experience?" Will I regret doing another pass?  Absolutely.  Will I be glad I did another pass?  Absolutely.  Maybe it doesn´t make any sense to emphasize the imagined profundity of our choices.  Perhaps it doesn´t matter at all.  And I guess that is the main reason I am doing it...  I will get back to California soon enough.  But not today.  Today I will sail towards the South Pacific.

See you on the other side.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

It is starting to be that time...

I think I finally rinsed out the last bit of dirt from Marina Seca Guaymas.  I now feel like I am back in cruising mode.  Tan is strong enough to handle hours of the sun (which I never do), hair is longer, I do not wear shoes for half the trips to shore.  I take naps and go swimming.  That is about it.

I have not made a decision of what I am going to do from here.  I tried selling the boat but no offers.  I even tried looking for crew to take the edge off of single handling but nothing there.  Well, regardless of what decision I make, I am most likely going to leave Melaque next week.  And that means Mexico as well.  I have ideas of what I might do and there are some fantastic ones.  The great thing is that the boat moves so slowly, I could be out a week and still change my mind and course...

Look for another post but it should be my last from Mexico, unless something unexpected happens.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Turned the corner

In Melaque now.  Crap passage down around Corrientes.  I couldn´t figure out the counter current and spent hours trapped with close to two knots on the nose.  Crap fishing as well.  I hooked a turtle!  That was a first...

This is probably as far as I will go down the coast.  It is finally warm and even though the water isn´t so clear I can go swimming off the boat whenever I want...

Sunday, March 4, 2012

In San Blas

It was a nice ride down from Guaymas in mostly 20 knot conditions.  It still took five days as it fizzled out south of Mazatlan.  Few glitches with the boat but nothing major.

Lot of people consider the affordability of GPS to have ruined cruising.  Anyone can now go!  No more challenge, etc..  After this last  passage I know that when they find a way to completely remove seasickness, then, anyone can really go.  That awful feeling is just the worst.  I can imagine how many people who see a small boat as about the worst place to be.  The thing is you get over it but most never make it.  It took me two days and now I am fine.

I arrived to hear Norm Goldie tell another newly arrived boat on the VHF not to leave the vessel unattended.  This is new.  Sounds like a boat was boarded early in the season.  If it is really that bad, I might have to find another spot to hole up for a bit unless I still decided to go towards Australia.

It really is one of two choices now - sail to Australia and sell the boat for whatever I get or sail back to California via Hawaii.  The latter is the more sensible and is the conservative choice.  I would have a place to stay when I get back, I would still have all my tools, etc..  It would cost less and I could re enter with a bit more money. The journey would also be genuinely complete.  Selling the boat in Australia is a great excuse for seeing the South Pacific again.  When is the next time I will have a boat poised and ready to see the South Pacific.  I mostly did the milk run the first time around so now I would see a few less visited spots...  It is only a little longer sail than the Hawaii trip... It is actually an easier sail. It is the choice the wilder and the ¨go for it¨  part of me leans towards...  Anyways, who knows.  I will decide in the next few weeks.