One of the coolest aspects of being back in La Cruz has been
having a chance to get to know the fleet of 2017 (plus a whole lot of other
boats). Having made it the whole way round, and still smiling, gives us a
perspective that a lot of the crews here don’t have yet. We didn’t fall off the
edge, get swept up in storms, we weren’t captured by pirates and didn’t succumb to
And we managed to eat well, the whole way around.
As I mentioned before, in many ways, La Cruz is our ‘home’
port. We first spent an extended stay here in 1997 and over the years we’ve
built up a little network of local friends and favourite things which make it
clear that even when we don’t have a boat down here—we’ll still find our way back.
|The kids thanking Cat for all the great things she puts together for them|
|burgee painting--to let other kids know there are children aboard|
Our pivotal year here was 2011—the year we jumped. Between planning
our Pacific Crossing with friends, buying way more stuff than we needed to, and
prepping the boat (while stressing more than we should have) we attended
seminars and parties which were coordinated by Mike and Cat (PV Mike and La Cruz Marina
|The kids ran a taco restaurant for the day, for tips. Afterward they were able to donate a portion of their tips back to the community.|
I’m not sure the fleet here (or the management at Marina Nayarit for that
matter) has any idea of the incredible wealth of skills, knowledge, energy and generosity that Cat and Mike bring to the community. They are the
sort of quietly giving people who are easy to take for granted—despite the
fact that between them they volunteer to coordinate and run dozens of free
puddlejump and WWS seminars and workshops—something we haven’t encountered in
any marina outside of La Cruz.
|Evan and Darrell on Wiz running a hand-on fibreglass workshop|
Their enthusiasm for getting the annual fleet educated and
ready to go is inspiring. Thanks to them--hundreds of sailors leave here each year a little more confident and a lot better educated. Thanks to them we’ve been lucky enough to
share our knowledge and experiences in over a half-dozen talks and seminars
over the past two months including Pacific Provisioning, Hands-on-Fibreglassing, Being a Kid on a Boat
(Maia), Repairs in Exotic Locations, Travel Writing and Ocean Routing.
|Dozens of people came out to hear me and Deb on Coastal Drifter talk about how we provision-she's organized, I'm not.|
The experience has been a blast (though super labour
intensive—it takes a long time to plan a two hour talk…). As a family we’ve
been able to go back through our memories and really savour them—thinking about
the highlights, the challenges and the successes. From the memories we've been able to build up talks of lessons learned and ideas we want to pass along.
While the talks have taken a lot of time away from prepping
the boat for sale—something that we need to keep at the forefront of our
planning if we're ever going to get home. And from my writing work—I have so many cool stories on the go right now that I fell quite divided up. It has been an absolute honour to be part of other people’s dreams—if only in
a small way.
Maybe that’s what keeps Mike and Cat giving so much of their
time and energy to the fleet year after year—that chance to help someone else
make their dream come true.
|As always--along with the work, there's lots of fun|
For us—the past couple of months have been a chance to give
back. We've had the opportunity pay forward all the small moments where people helped us meet our
goals and fulfill our dreams: It's almost like saying thank-you in reverse.
It takes a village to get a boat across an ocean—and La Cruz
is still one of the best villages we know.