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Posted by cat from 22.214.171.124 (apx1-07-206.pdx.du.teleport.com) on martes, junio 17, 2003 at 16:00:10 :
RED TIDE!!! Did anyone else notice the red tide in the bay between May 25 and about June 2nd or 3rd? It discoloured the water and roamed around from beach to beach. I swear it followed us when we changed hotels from Playa Madera to La Ropa. In a way it made me appreciate more how beautiful the blue- green water was when the Red algae finally moved out. Some of the highlights and lowlights of our trip: If you have read part 1 you know we loved the Catalina. I loved sitting on our huge private patio in the morning with (bad) coffee and in the evening with (good) micheladas before we went to dinner, gazing out to the horizon watching the sea birds skimming the waves (pelicans are my favorite), and the unfamiliar, exotic birds in the palms around our casita. Lots of butterflies too and my favorite flowering shrub, Oleander which fills the air with a heady vanilla scent. Down at the palapas on two occasions another exotic animal was up in a tree letting fly droppings the size of a toy poodle's. My husband remarked, " Wow, that's a big bird!". On closer inspection it turned out to be a really big iguana. Never saw dog poop on the beach but watch out for iguana poop under the trees! Made friends with a beach dog we named Jugo. We fed him chicken tacos and bottled water. He looked pretty scrappy with healed wounds and scraggled ears. Was'nt until later when we went to Paty's for dinner that we noticed he was quite well fed, and real picky. My husband dropped a piece of fish for him, he turned up his nose. He had a brother there, smaller and neutered - Jugo was decidedly un-neutered and generously endowed. We called the small guy Jugorito. This guy followed us home and bounded up the stairs ahead of us. My husband dreaded the thought of a dog crying outside our room all night so we distracted him and then ran to our room. We also encountered a number of kitties here and there, in some cases howling for attention, which I gave them but not without a slight cringe. Whole lotta scratching going on with these cats and probably worms too so I always washed my hands afterwards. As mentioned in my earlier report, Raymundo (manager?) saved a tiny kitten one day that was stuck in a clay tile on the roof of the bar. Though these cats are roaming free looks like they are taken care of by the staff. So that is a bit about the animals we met, now for the humans. One day we went on a guided hike with Raymundo. We were accompanied by a young lady named Simone, a good friend of hotel owner Eva. They are both from Germany , Simone had been raised partly in Mex. City. She was on vacation and is a flight attendant so I think her whole trip was only costing her for food and recreation. For $10 each Raymundo was taking us to Manzanillo beach to snorkel. He called it a walk but friends, it was a HIKE so be prepared if you go. Take plenty of water and go early. We left at 7:30 am. It took about an hour to get there and then unfortunately it was really rough water. It was my first time snorkeling and I am not a strong swimmer so it was short, and calamitous for me. Actually it was a comedy of errors for everyone except for Simone who got out beyond the breaking waves. My husband was trying to guide me in my life jacket, ( no snickering). Immediately a wave rushed over me and rolled me onto some coral like a turtle, legs in the air. I put my hand down to brace myself- which hurt, my husband is scrambling to get me off, we get ourselves up onto the beach and Raymundo comes over to see what s up. We are explaining that it's too rough for me, and he says - "Look. a fish bit me!" He has a small mark on his shin, "I stepped on the fish and then the fish says, 'you will feel as much pain!' My husband is showing us the cuts on his knees from the coral and just then a wasp bit me on the hand. We were all just standing there laughing- Jeez, we're a mess- and then Todd (husband), looks at his wrist and says, " My watch! It's gone!!". So we gave up on the water and wandered the beach collecting bits of coral and shells. Eventually we gathered our stuff to head back, oh boy!, and now it is much hotter. We encountered a guy coming down to the beach. He talked to Raymundo about the fishing there for cucarachas del mar. We saw the shell casings of some of the creatures in a pile. They looked like trilobites. Apparently they are delicious....hmm. It was a hard walk back but I felt like I really deserved a michelada and a dip in the sea when we got home. Raymundo was great , a very good guide. Apparently tourists have ventured the journey alone before and got mugged by banditos. Although this journey may sound like a "lowlight" it has actually molded itself into a wonderful memory. It is the company of Simone and Raymundo I will remember fondly, and my husband trying to help me snorkel for the first time and expertly rescuing me from cuts and scratches. We did end up having a terrific snorkeling experience the next day on our fishing trip with Captain Ramone- next installment....
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