Subj: Nanjo Chronicals 2000 - Work, medical, dental and visitors
Travels from March 9 to March 23
Sometimes life slows down and sometimes it speeds up, but sometimes the crew of Nanjo has to catch up on projects and do other mundane things that detract from the opinion that we just hop from one adventure to another. Many of you have heard us indicate before we left, "Cruising is doing boat projects in exotic places." Well, we were at that point.
However, there were some very nice interruptions to the all-work-and-no-play schedule. One was a visit by one of the Chronical-crew, Matt and his friend Rebecca. They actually arrived for the night of the fireworks on Olas Altas, but we didn't link up until several days later at the El Moro Hotel, one of the many El Cid resorts in Mazatlan. Visiting them at El Moro gave us a look at the college Spring Break crowd, what vacation-life is like at one of the premier resorts and what a "real" hot shower is like. This was going to be our exposure to the easy livin' lifestyle of the resort crowd!
The college people were everywhere. The pools were filled, the pool decks adorned with bikini-clad women and their muscled escorts. There was much splashing, water-sports and sun worshipping poolside, on the beach and in the streets. Matt said the coeds wearing a special armband were entitled to unlimited drinks. All in all they seemed to have everything in control and were having a good time. Their license to drink in check.
The El Moro appeared to be focused on promoting their facility as a timesharing gem. There was the ever-present attempt to get us, and other first-timers, into a presentation, baited with all sorts of free dinners and credits toward all sorts of special resort privileges. We easily resisted. The hotel is very beautiful and caters to every guest's need. However, Matt couldn't get his room for hours because the previous week's guest using that room wouldn't vacate it until they were moved into a new room. Matt and Rebecca waited at the pool and the occupants remained in the room - nobody was "in management's face", so nothing was moving. Finally Matt got in their face and demanded that he be moved in - it was around 4pm. The occupants were moved out and the maids began to clean up.
The four of us had a recreational sail aboard Nanjo, one day. The weather had improved very nicely that week and the clouds stayed away, although the afternoon winds were reminiscent of The Bay. It was a most unexpected pleasure, having Matt go sailing with us. In the past, he had stated that the only thing he wanted to know about "sails" was when Nordstroms was having one (sale). On the other hand, Rebecca has sailed in Hawaiian waters, not a beginner's level of experience. Rebecca took the helm most of the morning, as we sailed toward the islands just off the hotel-lined beach. When the seas grew, I took over and we worked our way back to the harbor. Matt never got sick and Rebecca had a good time.
Then one afternoon we went to the hotel and played in one of the pools, dove off the man-made waterfall, cooked in the spa and did the pool thing. Then we headed for their room and our first "real" shower in over 5 months: We're talking about hot-as-we-wanted water, for as long as we wanted. It was very nice! Afterwards, I had to get into some long pants, since we were going to dinner at a fiesta where shorts weren't allowed; Nancy borrowed a top from Rebecca which became a knee-length dress on her.
The fiesta was a luau-like group party. A happy hour when you could drink as much as you wanted. The house drink was margaritas instead of maitais. The buffet was Mexican standards. The music almost had a Hawaiian tone to it. We ate more than we should have.
Unfortunately, we couldn't stay for the main entertainment. The buses stop running around 10pm and it was a long way back to the harbor without one. We had to say goodbye to Matt and Rebecca that night, although they had a few more days. But we waved at their plane when it flew over the harbor.
Nanjo moved to the Marina on the 15th. We had to hit a high tide once again. But in addition, we had to pass a dredge, which occasionally blocked the channel. Our original plan was to leave the harbor around 0530. Just as we were going to start the engine, the fog descended on the harbor. We chose to not navigate in this, so we went back to bed. At 0700, the sun was shining in our eyes - the fog was gone. We quickly completed our preparations, raised the anchor and sped out of the anchorage. After steaming quickly the 6+ miles to the channel entrance, we had to wait awhile until the dredge made room for us to pass. We were tied to a dock soon after, for the first time since October.
First Nancy had some dental work done, a cavity filled and two old fillings replaced. The dentist was very good and was handsome as a movie star, so Nancy almost enjoyed herself. The dentist's skills were excellent and the cost was less than the out-of-pocket charges if we had the work done with our insurance, in California. Novocaine was administered painlessly. About the only "outdated" features were not having a suction hose available to clear her mouth and having to rinse her mouth using a small paper cup of water to rinse before spiting into a sink. No big deal. Needless to say, we are terminating our dental insurance.
A few days later, after she was unable to break a fever and a cough, Nancy tested out the local medical profession. We walked into an urgent-care doctor's office, just outside the El Moro's lobby, after dark one night. About 15 minutes later, the doctor arrived, having returned from the hospital. After a few minutes of consultation with Nancy, some looking at throat and nose and listening to her lungs, the doctor announced that she had bronchial and sinus infections, with a little rattle ("a wheezle") in one lung. He gave her several injections and Rx for several more medications. The charges were higher than we had expected, but still lower than what we would have paid in the US. But most importantly, the next morning Nancy looked and felt much better. She rapidly recuperated.
We completed almost every chore and project before our departure on the 23rd to begin our return to "the old country", to California, beginning with a First Class bus trip to Tijuana. What adventure would this turn out to be? Would the Federales stop us? Would US Customs be nasty? We were filled with questions. At least the cab driver was waiting for us, ahead of schedule, at the gate to our dock . . . we were apprehensive, but not about the trip. We wondered how it was going to feel being back in the rush-rush, fast paced world of high tech conveniences and affluence. Off we went to find out.
Crew of Nanjo