Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Isla Mujeres - Mexico Sunday ~ Tuesday

Sunday: After a good nights sleep we accessed the damage to the boat and it wasn't too bad.  There were a few things that needed repair but nothing major, at least major to me.  We needed a few boat parts and inquired where to get them and made a plan.  We all headed to the ferry to visit Cancun, especially the WalMart to reprovision.   While visiting Cancun we went to a touristy market area to look around and we found Caminero Tacos Cancun,  The people were so friendly and eager to help.  We just had drinks and promised to come back again for dinner. Walmart was pretty disappointing considering the prices are the same as Georgia and the selection pretty lame.   From there we headed back to the ferry and our boats with the provisions from WalMart.

Monday : Beth worked on laundry most of the day because everything had gotten wet.  I worked on putting the boat back in order and formulating a plan to get everything fixed while dealing with all the people and paperwork involved with bringing the boat, people and dogs into the country.  The dock master "Chepo" was very helpful in organizing getting everyone together and to the boat.  Customs and immigration were the easiest while we had to take a trip downtown to the hospital for the health (Sanitary) inspection.  The dogs had to be seen by a local vet but wasn't a real problem, just more money.  Apparently all officials expect to be tipped and Chepo had advised us of how much and to whom although he took care of most of it for us.  All up, it cost us about $2500 pesos ( figure 10 pesos to 1 usd ) to get cleared into the country for 180 days.

Apparently the SPOT locator died somewhere north of Cuba.  It requires lithium batteries and I didn't have any spares onboard.  I tried alkaline but never got a signal that it was working.  We will try to get some while hear, as well as a few spares, and get that working again.

We explored Isla a little as we needed provisions and checked out the amenities of the marina.  The website made the marina sound like its name, Paradise.  In reality the marina was lacking.  They had a dock but I can not remember ever being on a dock in such bad shape.  They had power and it worked. The water pressure wasn't much better that a good rain.  The apartments, pool and grounds are all under construction and might be finished this year but I wouldn't count on it.  The cable tv on the dock, non existent.  The supposed golf cart availability also didn't exist and the 24 hour security was a joke.  Frank, the owner, had purchased the place in Feb and was fixing everything, apparently the website was a forecast, not fact.  I am sure that in a year or so it will be a nice marina, but for now it was nothing more than a port in the storm.

Beth met Geff and Rose from the marina next door whilst working on the laundry.  They are an older couple cruising full time and invited us over for their departure party and to swap stories.  J, J, Beth and I went over about 8pm and the party was pretty much over.  We told tales of our crossing and they shared their experiences.  Geff gave me a tour of his 41' Hunter and realized we have very similar tastes in equipment.  They were headed south for hurricane season in the morning but we exchanged boat cards, promising to keep in touch.  The marina, El Milagro Marina, was a much nicer marina and after talking with Geff and the marina manager,everyone agreed we needed to move.

Tuesday:  Beth and J headed out early while I worked on the boat.  Their mission was groceries and sightseeing.  Beth wasn't sure of some of the food available in the store but got a few known items.  She got a variety pack of cookies which are not bad, just different.  J had checked into getting accommodations in Cancun for a few days to give us all a break and got a fantastic deal at the Westin Cancun.  They accepted dogs so the evening was spent securing the boat and getting ready to head to Cancun in the morning.

Pictures from around Isla Mujeres

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