Another calm and peaceful morning. I took my breakfast out to the beach and sat there reading afterwards. Juan came out and we sat and chatted for a while shifting in and out of English and Spanish as the conversation switched topics. A guy named Roger came by asking Juan what octopus tasted like. Not sure what he was considering on the menu somewhere, but I offered to grab him a ceviche tostada since I was heading over to refill my tea. We three sat and talked for a time until the heat of the day demanded some type of water activity. Roger enjoyed his tostada and decided that pulpo was, indeed, good for the menu.
Commuting to work
I went for a long paddle to the south. Today is the two year anniversary of my titanium hip. I rounded the point and headed along the coast towards Las Minitas. I passed the beach that some gringos had fenced off as their own and continued further along the rocky shore. Some beautiful houses were tucked into the jungle at the pretty stretch of beach where Koda and Cali had an amazing day of fun almost three years ago now.
For the next mile or so, I was surprised to see the number of pristine beaches that ran like a ribbon at the foot of the hills that follow the sea. Many were rocky and had little headlands but they were easily accessible and you’d have the entire area to yourself. I headed out to sea for the return trip. There is a little rock that sits above the waterline about a mile out from El Pequeno Paraiso. I paddled out and around it before turning back into shore and heading for home. I had an eye out for whales hoping to maybe get lucky and encounter a few out in the open waters. A few rays but little else in sea life.
There’s home on the left
After drying and catching my breath on the beach, I ate the remainder of my ceviche then it was time to cycle into town and hunt up some pesos. Someone must have refilled the town ATM because today it had some cash in the box. The usurious ATM fee would put a scare into a weaker soul, but with Charles Schwab they cover all transaction fees so I’ll be getting reimbursed. That’s why people prefer to drive out to the Oxxo for the lower fee.
Hook ‘em up Kevin!
With a pocket full of pesos, it was time to do some shopping. I hit Bernal’s for some basics then rattled along on the cobblestones to the ice cream store where I grabbed a choco-nuez paleta and sat on the sidewalk eating the scrumptious popsicle. A mellow day in town. A quick stop at Rodrigo’s fish shop for a filet of dorado then back out Calle Minitas for home. Along the way, I came across a wheelbarrow vendor with a cart full of berries. I got a bagful of blueberries and took everything to the RV to get it in the fridge.
The lilies in front of El Caracol
Sweaty from all of my pedaling, the ocean was calling me to cool off. I did another paddle out into the bay. To the north this time where I saw a couple of Hobie sailing kayaks coming this way. I reached the duo and chatted for a second before continuing on. Dead puffers were floating like coconuts on the sea, victims of the shrimpers trawls. The other bycatch fish are snapped up by birds or sink, but the blowfish wash into shore to remind beach goers of the trawling activity off shore.
The crew from EPP
I sat outside the gate with the congregation of oldies from Paraiso. I guess I should stop referring to people as oldies since I suppose I’m officially in their ranks with the America the Beautiful Senior Pass in my wallet. But I choose to live in denial and see myself as I was thirty years ago. I read for a while until someone spotted a trio of whales making their way across the bay from north to south. Where were they a half an hour ago when I was out there? I pulled out the camera and took a few shots as they majestically flowed on past blowing tall spouts of water with each exhale as they resurfaced on their journey. The crowd was oohing and awing while passing around a pair of binoculars.
Soon they were gone around the point and the sun started dropping down sending most of the folks off to dinner. Some low clouds were hiding the sunset but this is my favorite time of day when things calm down and get quiet. A fly fisherman was whipping his lure out into the baitfish near the beginning of the reef while the only camper left was a woman weaving a basket from strips of old t-shirts. I sat and watched the frigate birds gracefully glide in circles above as I contemplated my day.
For dinner, I heated the chile relleno I had left from the ones I bought from Enrique on Monday. Sooo goood! Especially the chipotle cheese sauce for pouring over them. The pie cart rolled up just as I finishing as if on cue. I’m not exaggerating when I tell you that everything this lady makes is golden. Most people swear by the flan, but I got a carrot cake and it was to die for, totally moist with large chunks of cooked carrot baked in. Someone get me out of here while I can still fit in my pants!