It’s been a couple of weeks of really amazing highs, and a few days of a ridiculous low. Boggles my mind that I get sucked into the low part so deeply. You’d think I would have learned by now. The low is the most recent, and I’ll just get that out of the way, so I can better enjoy the highs.
Monday morning, bright and early, I left my slip in Marina Palmira and made my way to the boatyard at the other end of Bahia de la Paz. Arriving a bit early, I found their ‘waiting to be hauled out’ slip occupied, so I made some doughnuts through the adjacent anchorage until the travel lift was ready for me. Hauled, blocked and pressure washed by 0900, I got online to check my daily mail and do my online chores. As I checked my bank balance, I noted my pension check to be missing in action. I phoned the pension department, and the nice man said they didn’t send the check since they couldn’t verify that I was still alive. Assuring the nice man I was in fact, still alive and not speaking from the grave, I asked where in the heck was my paycheck. The nice man said that since the mail they had sent erroneously to my old address was returned to them, they assumed I was dead. Not going into all of the ridiculous details, it took four more days to return my money to me. This occurred at a precisely difficult moment, as I was to send off three checks that morning, and lay down a deposit at the boatyard. Not having anything close to the balance necessary, I was able to contact the creditors and explain, and the boatyard was great enough to waive the deposit. This morning, I was able to pay everyone, not be late for any of the bills, and give the boatyard a good faith early partial payment. So, relieved and no longer frustrated, I can tell all the other fun stories!…
The third week in November, I got an amazing surprise. My mom (MY mother!) hitched a two day car ride with a couple she’d never met, and traveled down for a visit. Marilyn and Will from S/V Shaman One, were able to procure a beautiful Schipperke puppy from the same breeder my sister in law, Melanie, was using, and it was their opportunity to bring the pup down. So, Mom rode along for the fun. Lucky to be traveling in an Expedition with all the perks, it was a long but comfy two day drive. Will and Marilyn took good care of Mom, making sure she was comfortable, looked out for, and acclimatizing well. Arriving two days later and late in the evening, we all visited for a little, and Mom and I went out for a quick meal. I got her settled in the hotel at the marina, and told her I’d see her in the morning.
The next morning, we must have walked for a good 3-4 miles, taking in the malecon and various shops and sights. After a lunch of arrachera tacos, we slowly walked back to the marina. Of course, Sushi Koi was to be enjoyed in the evening, and we had such a good time splanglishing with the chef and groaning in delight at his creations. Mom wanted to walk back to the boat, so we took our time and made it home. One of the things I noted was at no time did Mom seem uncomfortable or afraid. That’s La Paz. And actually, the majority of this country.
Saturday, we took Willow out for a long harbor putz, wandering the bahia from Costa Baja all the way up to the Singlar Marina. Looking at all of the anchored boats at the Magote, Mom imagined herself living aboard in this beautiful community. Changing our venue to beef for dinner, we went to Palermo’s. I watched in amazement as Mom ate an entire, softball sized filet mignon, with a salad, to boot. I was very impressed to see her appetite, as she just hasn’t found much to satisfy her tastebuds at home. Sunday morning, we took a cab downtown to church, and although Mom didn’t understand a word of the Mass, she was able to follow along based on almost eighty years of strong faith. After, we walked through town to the bagel place, and again, I watched as Mom devoured a very healthy, but big breakfast. I was so pleased! We visited, enjoyed watching the very strong family culture of Mexico, and wandered a bit more through the streets. Mom was entranced by the generosity of the locals, old and young, who would go out of their way to help her up a step, hold a door open, or just offer a “buenos dias” to her. I suggested she take some of her new words and phrases home with her and practice with her neighbors in her park.
We picked up the rental car I’d be driving her to Cabo in and drove out to Tecolote Beach. There was a bit of a blustery wind, as the breeze funnels there between Isla Espiritu Santo and the point that makes up Tecolote. The ocean was lovely, and Mom wanted to feel the water. It was a perfect temp for her, cool, refreshing, but not cold, and we beachcombed up and down the shoreline. Again, when it came time to navigate a few steep stairs, a local quickly recognized her difficulty and offered his hand and warm smile. Mom was so gracious in her thanks, and commented numerous times how lovely the people were here.
Dinner that night. Hmmmm. There was no other place to go but right back to Koi Sushi for some more delightful and creative dishes. She didn’t want the evening to end. We had an early morning ahead of us, so we were in bed by 2200.
The next morning, Katie from Pangaea, Mom and I made the drive down to Cabo San Lucas, with a breakfast stop in Todos Santos. A quaint tourist town, we had a great meal at the Hotel California, rumored to be the one and the same topic of the Eagles famous song. After, we walked a few blocks up to a beautiful curio shop where Katie purchased a few baubles, and Mom got a few Christmas presents. Resuming our drive to Cabo, we made the airport in good time, and dropped Mom off as far as we could go. The airlines took good care of her, and my brother met her at the airport in San Diego. She gushed for days of her trip, and is looking forward to returning to La Paz for another visit in February. I was so happy she was able to put aside some long-standing fears and just enjoy this time, the sights, the people, and herself! Brava, Mom!!!
Some people have said it was difficult to leave a reply, so I’m giving it a try. Sure, I talk to myself all the time, or, write replies to myself. That way, I never lose my arguments!!!
Wow – finally I got to hear about your mom’s trip down. We haven’t been able to connect at the Harbor because of my travels and scheduling changes. I’ll have to give her a phone call. Cindy and I thought maybe she didn’t actually make the trip! haha so glad she did and what a wonderful time for both of you! – Rosie
PS – so sorry, but interesting, to hear about your pension/assumed death…..so glad you got it worked out fairly quickly.
Really enjoy your blog. We know how important those pension checks are! Glad your mom had such a great visit.
Made it home to San Mateo in 3+ days. Highway 1 in very good condition, but mucho road construction in mountains S and N of Ensenada. Crossed at Tecate for 1st time and it was a breeze.
Looking forward to seeing you in March when we return. If you need anything from the states, let us know.
Steve and Susan
SO happy Mom enjoyed herself and glad to hear she is doing well! Wendy you are amazing! Love ya lots! Linda