Monday, January 4, 2010

June '09 to January '10 - A catch-up.

Here it is at the beginning of 2010 and we have not posted ANYTHING to our blog since last June. Shame on us as we try to bring you up to date on our various happenings as briefly as possible.

We decided to spend most of the hot and humid summer in Punta Mita to see what it was all about. By the end of June we were experiencing afternoon and night time thunder showers accompanied by spectacular lightning displays. For two people from coastal California where this kind of thing rarely happens, we were in awe of mother nature's awesome power. There were nights when we would be out on our deck at 2:00 AM mesmerized by what we were seeing. Truly spectacular especially compared to the benign and very pleasant winter time weather in this part of Mexico. Fortunately our condo home has great cross ventilation, so for the most part we were comfortable during the day with just the overhead fans churning away. We did finally get to the point where we fired up our bedroom air-con at night. Oh, what a treat to be under a blanket when the rest of our place was hot and steamy!

We made a quick trip to Colorado Springs at the end of July to pick up the grand kids and fly them to Mexico in anticipation of Scott and Hillary arriving by car for their 11 month stay. We said goodbye to them in their Jeep Cherokee loaded down with a dog, two cats, a year's supply of dog food and various household and kitchen items. There was barely enough room for the two of them, but they squeezed in and made record time to their new home in San Pancho which is close to our Punta Mita condo. A real treat for us to have them near by and we've taken full advantage of it.

We flew out of Puerto Vallarta on September 12 headed for the Bay Area where we had much to do before embarking on our 31 day cruise to Australia. We had doctors' appointments, friends to see, boat parts to buy, upgrades to our Alameda condo as well transporting our storage container to a new facility. After three years our fantastic tenant was moving out presenting us with another challenge. Our good friends, Lance and Sue Bateman, were ready to find new housing, and to our good fortune, they settled on our Alameda condo. We love the place and are thrilled to have them living there. We managed to get in one EYC cruise out with Jeff and Adrienne aboard "Bon Voyage" which was over the top fun. This gave us the opportunity to visit many of our friends and renew our appreciation for being part of Encinal Yacht Club.

After our hectic time in the Bay Area we boarded the magnificent "Star Princess" for our long awaited 31 day cruise to Australia. We can't begin to cover everything we did, but suffice to say it was fantastic to be on a vessel where we didn't have to do night watches, tackle mechanical problems, prepare and clean up meals, worry about the weather, etc, etc. We had lovely accommodations, great food, super entertainment and we quickly morphed into a totally relaxed mode. Our itinerary included two stops in Hawaii, three in French Polynesia, both Samoa's, Fiji, and four stops in New Zealand before arriving in Sydney. There were several times when we looked out of our stateroom window and thanked whoever was listening that we were not out there on our Destiny in those nasty conditions. A 109,000 ton 950 foot stabilized ship is quite different than a 42' sailboat. They both go on the water but that's the only thing they have in common.

Our long time friend, Lyn Cuttriss, met us on the dock in Sydney and graciously hosted us for four days. We both love Sydney and it was a treat to once again visit what we believe to be one of the world's great cities.

We flew back to San Francisco and spent 3 more hectic days before arriving back in Punta Mita on Halloween. The next day we got Destiny out of "mothballs" and moved her to the close by marina in La Cruz. Other than minor damage from hurricane Rick, we found her to be in surprisingly good shape.

Our next big event was Thanksgiving when we stuffed 29 people into our condo for a turkey dinner with all the trimmings. This is our favorite holiday and having so many friends and family here to celebrate with us made it even more special.

Since returning to Mexico we've been spending a good deal of time with Scott, Hillary and the grand kids as we want to take advantage of the limited time they'll be here while the grand kids hopefully pick up Spanish. We won't be doing any real cruising this season, but Destiny will be standing by ready to enjoy it all once again in 2010/2011.

We wish everyone a happy and prosperous 2010.

To view full size and read the captions, double click on a photo...