Quest for propane

 

Getting a propane tank refilled was half a days work and it’s a pretty good sample of little cultural differences I notice in Mexico

I googled where I can refill propane and found a place downtown. A taxi driver quoted the ride from marina 10$ both ways, but when we said we wanna transport propane tanks the price went up to 60$

So we decided to shove the tanks in a sailbag and backpack and take a 60 cent bus ride. In the city we learned that the only place we can actually refill is by the airport. No problem – 15 minutes by bus.

The funny thing is that bus stops dont have any information. You can only rely on local knowledge. „Blue buses goes to the airport” I didnt even ask about a time schedule.

On the featured picture Tate is chilling on a bus stop. We didn’t know what bus do we need, so we just asked the drivers when they stoped.

On the picture below I’m enjoying the view through a broken glass. The driver wouldn’t even close the doors doing 60mph on the highway.

Long story short – we got it done. It’s hard ot believe how laid back things are around here. We like it more and more20170104_143735

 

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Tip of the cape

Yesterday morning we arrived in Puerto Los Cabos, doing around 700 miles in little under 6 days. Climate has changed noticably, we are all in good spirits.

Water temerature went up from 18 to 23 degrees. We were astounded by the amount of sea life along the coast. Tate managed to catch a yellowfin tuna, we saw lots of dolphins, kalmari and flying fish. Overall a very good sample of what it’s like to sail on the ocean.

We fell in love with this place, We’ll stay a week to enjoy it and work on the boat.

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Back in the sea

We are about to leave our port of entry in Mexico, so it’s about time I sum up my first impressions of this county. Or actually – it would be unfair, just like judging Poland based on a week-long visit in Jastarnia during the summer. Another ghetto for the tourists.

It’s amazing how the seaside in this city has a rhytm dictated by giant cruiseships going in and out of the harbor. Anytime a cruiseship is moored, I hear mexican cover of „Gangam Style” all over the marina. I am offered fish taco, souvenirs and drugs wherever I go. Not my vibe, but when the cruiseship sets off, it all becomes much nicer.

Thanks to the effort of the local boatyard, Bella Sirena is back in the water with new hull paint. According to the weather forecast we can leave within the next 24 hours. This time we head at leat 500 miles south hoping to get more sun and less rain

Merry Christmas!

First stop

After a slow overnight passage we arrived in Ensenada, Mexico. Custom clearance is very slow, Tacos are cheap and delicious, and we discovered we need to repaint our antifouling. Fortunately, we are in a very professional boatyard and we should be ready to go in three days. So far so good!

Word of explanation for non-sailing readers: Yellow flag means we just entered foreign waters and haven’t done custom clearence yet. Mexican flag is just a “courtesy flag”

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Off we go

We changed our inital plan to sail out on thursday. With a low pressure system carrying strong winds we decided against taking an unnecessary risk. Now we are 100% ready. We plan to sail 60 miles to Ensenada, get clearance from the customs and head further south untill it gets nice and warm. Still not sure where we will spend Christmas, but it sure won’t be San Diego!

Work in progress

A whole week has passed since all three of us are finally on the boat. We’ve been replacing all the house batteries, getting a 3rd reef added on the mainsail and servicing the engine.

Replacing the batteries was a fun and complicated task. We mounted much bigger batteries with more capacity but that meant changing the fittings that keep them secured under the deck. The challenge is to mount three boxes, 70kg each (!) so that they sit still when the boat is rocking on the waves.

It was two days of work but we are happy with the result. 750 amp hours are secured tightly under the floor. The next big task will be to make a third reef on the mainsail.

 

Tate removing the old batteries

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Sockets for the new batteries almost readyIMG_20161207_155750.jpg

New batteries in place

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Culture shock

This is the excerpt for your very first post.

As the only crew member who’s not from the U.S. I feel I should share my early impresions of this country.

We’re in San Diego, California. I quickly learned the difference between a “dude” and a “bro”, I made my first PB&J and discovered the biggest atrocity known to man – standard measurements.

But after we had a day off that we used to drive around city I quickly discovered why Southern California is so famous. We will soon find out how does it compare to Mexico

 

Pt loma overlooking San Diego BayIMG_20161210_140923.jpg

 

Hippie hostel just by Ocean BeachIMG_20161211_152906.jpg.