Thursday, 26 July 2012

Back in real Mexico..............


Our break is over and we are back at the laguna and spent yesterday getting the house back how we like it.

The second week of our break was better than the first. The down side of San Pancho was that the sea was really only for looking at. The undertow was really bad so swimming was out of the question. We enjoyed our time in San Pancho but the longer we stayed the more sanitised it felt. It is making its living on mainly US money and in exchange the "nationals" ( as the Americans call the Mexicans) are "managed". So nearly everyone in all the shops and restaurants speaks English, there are no hawkers on the beach and we did not get served one portion of frijoles the whole time we were there. Frijoles, mashed beans, are the Mexcian staple!! My camera disappeared while we were there, I know exactly where I left it but next morning the waiters denied seeing it. Luckily I had just downloaded a load of photos onto the netbook. Phew!

We had a couple of day trips from S Pancho, Sayulita is a hippy surfing beach. We met a lovely Japanese young couple who have been travelling for 5 years. Chris bought me some lovely garnet earings that they had made. That is really outside the box for their culture and we wished them well.

Another day we went to La Penita where there was meant to be a huge market with was a disappointment only 3-4 stalls the rest was the usual market tat. I did buy some lovely fish, it had just been landed and 2 large fish cost 60 pesos ( that's £3) and he filleted them too. The beach was dreadful too, full of rubbish, not a pretty sight........although the sea was full of beautiful majestic pelicans.

Saturday we went to Playa los Ayala which we loved. It was the southern end of a big bay and it was Mexicans at play. The sea was quite gentle, so we had a swim and the water was full of daytrippers with their inflatables. Swimming is not big in mexico for some reason and sadly it is a cause of deaths each year. There were sellers everywhere, fabulous frsh fruit, cocunut cakes, drinks, inflatables loaded up on a bike, jewellery and fresh oysters.

We then drove to a place called La Tranquilla. A huge complex with 2 massive hotels, three hotel shells ( the money ran out!!) and a golf cousre with 2 people on. The whole complex was bigger than SAMAO and is aimed at the "all inclusive crowd" who don't want to mix with the locals. I looked the hotel up on line and it and it is luxurious and a snip starting at 264 US$ a night.........and that doesn't include breakfast....but you get your own private plunge pool on the balcony!!

From there we drove to Punta de Mita a lovely spot that used to be a little fishing village. Chris met some dive guys and we decided to go there, instead of 2 nights in San Blas, so that he could dive on Monday. There was a cheap mexican hotel for £30 a night and we changed our plans. The diving didn't come off so we just spent a lazy time and avoided the really expensive food spots........we had a huge plate of seafood lobster, octopus, filleted fish, whole fish and larhge prawns with salad and rice. The food was beautiful, the beer cold and the waiter was lovely the table tops were plastic and the waves were lapping feet from the table. The same thing was on offer with tablecloths and wine glasses and a slimy waiter for 3 times the price further up the beach.

If La tranquilla looked posh on the headland at Punta de Mita was the Four seasons resort. It is $450-4,500 a night but Jack Nickhlaus did design the golf course and Barack has stayed there!! It is all a bit obscene and the final straw for me was on Monday night when I wanted to get some cash from the ATM and it only dispensed US is hard but I can see how the locals can be swayed because it does provide jobs. On the return journey home I knew I was back in Mexico when we ended up in Compostela town centre by mistake and there was a man on his horse and three shops selling saddles etc.

We got back about 2 on Tuesday and at 5 I went up to SAMAO to stock up on fruit and vegetables. There had been thunder and dark clouds but as I got to the sign for SAMAO the heavens opened and the rain was full of hailstones. I managed to park right outside the veg shop.........well at the second attempt the first time I wasn't close enough to the high kerb and didn't fancy putting my foot in half a foot of water pouring down the street.

It was great to have a break and David and Conception seem to have enjoyed their time at the laguna. However you can't be in "holiday" mode all of the time and I am glad to be back at the house cooking food how we like it and having our own space.

There is still stuff to do in the garden but that can wait. Chris did some repairs yesterday, on the outside door,and the key snapped in the main door and he managed to fix the strimmer too. It is amazing how much the garden has grown in 2 weeks. Those seedlings that I took a photo of a few weeks ago are now about 3 feet high!!

Angel arrived about 45 minutes after David and Conception had left, he'd been unwell since Saturday with diarrhoea........but had to wait till we were back. I sent him back home with some electrolyte sachets and Imodium and he was back yesterdy saying how much better he was and what a good doctor I am!!

Sadly our drumming neighbours are still here and we got a welcome back session on Tuesday night and then 2 hours yesterday. They are terrible drummers and it is just monotonous noise. I was thinking we could rig the music sytem up with a long lead and play music at full blast at about 3 in the morning.......

Yesterday we popped up to SAMAO to collect Chris' bank card. It was fedexed from the UK and only took 5 days.........Chris was like a kid with a new toy tracking it online. As usual we went to the doctor, Lulu, to collect it. Our friend Lloretta, the American nun, was there and we took her home as she has been unwell while we have been away.

Chris, who is so observant, found a business card stuffed in the number on our gate. Ququis, the vet, had popped down while we were away. Think we need to invite her for some food and she can come and check on the animals.

Miguel, our American friend from Iowa, is coming down tonight for a swim and some food........assuming we don't have rain again.He's just been home so it will be good to catch up with his news. 

We have 8 weeks left here and as it is cooler now, we need to get some walking done to improve our fitness for Machu Pichu and the rest of the S America jaunt.

Very expensive Corona but fab view!!

Los Americanos on the beach at San pancho

San Pancho sunset
Okay, just got to do the spellchecker and then I will add some photos. Not sure why but this takes me best part of an hour to do..........maybe I say too much!!
Till next time
Take care
Norma xx

1 comment:

  1. Have you ever thought that if you didn't 'say so much' we wouldn't have anything interesting to read?
    Sorry you had another bad experience by 'losing' your camera - you obviously need to nail things down in South America! Sounds like Mexico is going the way of the world - the Americal Dollar is the be-all as far as world economies are concerned, but WE remember who it was that started this darned financial crash in the first place! It sounds like although you've made friends, you're just about ready to move on again. Really looking forward to seeing those photos, as, if they're anything like the ones you've posted so far, they ought to be good. I'm only jealous of course. But we're looking to start some travelling in the next couple of months as Mandu passed away a fortnight ago (of cat alzheimer's), so we don't need to stay home any more. It won't be as exotic as South america as I don't cope with extremely hot temps. very well, so we'll let you know how we manage to compromise.... Look forward to your next blog. Adios. Kim x