we shook out the sails and headed
south from San Diego just before Christmas. Next stop,
Turtle Bay, Baja California, Mexico. We thought about the many
challenges we had ahead of us. The trip down from Washington to
California tested us but this was the next step. Off to a different country, a different language,
and all the unknowns
waiting for us. Baja is a rough, raw coast and there is no easy place to
put in until Turtle Bay and that is three days away from San Diego. Were on
Borderlands and border-crossings have a special significance in my
field of Multicultural Studies. Gloria Anzaldua speaks of
borders as the place where "two or more cultures edge each other,
where people of different cultures occupy the same territory, where
under, lower, middle, and upper classes touch..." Anzaldua
maintains that it is in the margins, in the border spaces between
cultures, races, genders, social classes, where the real work of
reconciliation takes place.
So I have been thinking about borders,
and about crossing them, and what it will mean to my family.
a few miles south of San Diego, our
first look at Mexico.
We were very
excited at finally leaving the US, and beginning this next part of our
journey. With our arrival in Mexico began a new set of adventures with
Port Captain check-ins called the paperwork Cha-cha. All cruisers are
required to check in with the port captains at major (and some minor)
ports. This involves showing your ships papers and paying the port fees
when you arrive and then again when you leave. This is probably the
major complaint cruisers have about Mexico. Every port captain
interprets the rules differently so you often don't know exactly how
each check in will go. Sometimes it's easy and some times it's like a
bad dental visit.
|This is Isla Cedro, the next
big Mexico landmark going south, looking like an island from Mars.
It was when we started down the Baja
past Isla Cedros that we picked up the single sideband cruiser nets for
the first time. We discovered the weather Guru, Don, from
"Summer Passage". Don is a retired cruiser whom has been to
Mexico many, many times. He broadcasts a daily weather update to the
cruiser nets in Mexico and Central America as well as many who are
crossing the Pacific to the Marquesas.
Lots of cruiser
folks listen to Don's weather advice. If you consider it as
advice and make your voyaging decisions using his weather predictions
and observations in conjunction with good judgment and local observation
you will do just fine. That disclaimer aside, I listen real hard
to what Don has to say and seek his input anytime I can get it!