Days turn into weeks, weeks into months… we’ve been holed up in Ixtapa / Zihuatanejo for 4 months. Where does time go? Currently suffering a real bad case of ‘Itchy Feet’… gotta get out of here very soon, so looks like we’ll be on the road in a few days. We have the daunting task of fitting our worldly belongings back into the bus… where did all this stuff come from? It sure is easy to ‘spread’ into an apartment. Other than an oil change Pumper is ready for the road. Paint still looking good and she is running nicely, and quieter… now that the muffler has been re-installed the correct way. All but had an argument with the muffler shop when they first installed it but don’t argue well in Española!
Settling into a groove was too easy… Yoga 3 days a week, walks on the beach, bike rides on our old clunkers we purchased from a rental store. And meeting new folks: short term vacationers, snowbirds, fellow travellers, and the gringo clan that decided to make this place full time home over the years, when Zihua was the tiniest of fishing villages and Ixtapa didn’t exist but for a stretch of sandy beach surrounded by mosquito filled mangroves and swamps. Not much evidence of the mangroves in this pristine fabricated vacation spot with golf courses, timeshares, hotels, and private condos commanding the best views and access to the beach, countless workers manicuring the grass edged roads, painstakingly painting curbs and borders and the base of every coconut tree white. Gallons of water sprayed nightly to keep the grass green and the less social nightly spraying of a pesticide concoction to abate the mosquitoes from turning this back into a swamp.
In contrast Zihua, now an oversized fishing village with all the amenities you could wish for and plenty of festivals displaying local culture, art, dance, and music. Fundraisers for local charities mostly subscribed to by Americans and Canadians but over the years gaining local, federal, and international support for the causes. ‘Sailfest’ a fundraiser for local indigenous childrens’ education, included a chance to sail for a day aboard the classic Souljournier, the skipper Willy sailing solo and heading for the South pacific, his next leg; a 30 day stint at sea.
Yoga has become a terrific physical and spiritual outlet for us in a studio with a vista of the Pacific just 30 metres down a golden sand beach. Yoga Instructors that have encouraged and contorted the best from us while intensifying our spiritual awareness.
No Yoga… No Peace!
Know Yoga… Know Peace!
Becoming networked with the art scene in town, has introduced us to an eclectic bunch including renowned artists from the US and Canada, living in everything from luxury condos to bamboo tree houses, all urging us to make this place home. You never know! We have a few trips on our list of things to do and more wander lust to work out of our systems before we make a base in this tropical paradise. One long-time resident that landed here some 40 years ago as a young 20 something treated us to a trek through the forest to a secluded beach where beachcombing for little treasures provided a bounty of photographic delights.
For a few months this ‘Thing’ was growing quickly on Steve’s chest. Looked a lot like a third nipple and bled like a bugger! Hmmm, we were kinda hoping we could delay taking action until spring but under the advice of a retired nurse decided to have it looked at… no… removed! You know it’s going to be an adventure working with the Mexican healthcare system! The recommended Naval Hospital directed us to another local clinic where a general surgeon would be on duty, or at least would be if we called him at home. ‘Be there in 20 minutes’… the surgeon appeared carrying his cauterizer machine and 10 minutes later Steve was under the knife. From the decision to have it looked at to having it removed… 2 hours, done and dusted, with the specimen in the lab for biopsy and the results a week later. They don’t bother to measure wait times! All accomplished in the local tongue with barely a word of English, even the biopsy report in Spanish. Benign Haemangioma, no worries! Surgery… $120, Biopsy… $70. Time to remove the stiches? Well what do you do if you are sitting having coffee on the beach with a retired nurse and retired dentist after a yoga class? You toddle off to Pumper sprawl on the rear seat and whip the stiches out in our Surgery on Wheels!
We had the chance to get involved at an orphanage with 14 abandoned and neglected kids, one of them found at the local refuse dump! Arriving with bags of food for a lunch and fruit and veggies to last several days.
To see the contentment of this bunch of mites all looking out for each other, well behaved, polite, no tantrums, no fussing at the table, broad smiles and laughter… was a humbling experience.
Piling them into Pumper for pictures was a riot and when we lifted the pop top the screams of joy must have been heard for miles. Before we leave we’ll make another visit with some medical supplies, and prints of the pictures… should be a hit.
With only a couple more yoga classes, maybe a little more paddle boarding, and perhaps another sail around the bay on our new passion the Hobie Cat, we’ll be bidding this little paradise and our new found friends a farewell… until the next time.
Amor y paz… from a Downward Dog! Ommm!