Whenever possible, we would go to the Ikuai restaurant and listen to Mango Duo. Their Latin rhythms, acoustic swing, and Zoe’s lovely voice create a relaxing haven for us.
We sure enjoy their music and friendship.
When LA VITA sensed that Rick was well enough to go for a sail, she demanded we go to Opequimar Shipyard and get her bottom painted!
We had to choose between La Cruz Shipyard (part of Marina Riviera Nayarit) and Opequimar Shipyard in Puerta Vallarta. We decided to haul out at Opequimar because it has a good reputation, most of the staff speaks English, and we can live aboard.
Living on board is a huge savings. The quote is itemized so you know what’s included. Plus the quote is in pesos and USD (US dollars). Knowing exactly what we are paying for makes managing the project much easier.
The La Cruz shipyard is closer and the lift is bigger, but they do not permit living on the boat. Motel living is expensive, even in Mexico.
There was another important reason we chose Opequimar. It would force us to leave the safety of the marina. We had been chained to the dock for so long, the fender had grown its own eco-system. It’s been nearly a year and a half.
Time to go sailing!
Here’s how things went…
We tossed the lines about 8am and set off for Puerto Vallarta. As soon as we got out of the marina, we experienced the familiar feeling of freedom and joy when we sail LA VITA.
In about three hours we were at Opequimar.
After 5-gallons of paint are applied to LA VITA’s bottom, she is ready to launch.
We sail back to marina La Cruz and for the moment LA VITA is happy.
Back in our slip, it’s time to chain and shackle LA VITA to the dock. And for us to get back to our boat projects.
We decided the first priority is to clean the air conditioner before the tropical heat and humidity begins to climb. The unit has been wrapped in plastic and sitting in the cockpit for a year. The innards need to be clean of dust and dirt.
With our successful “voyage” to Opequimar and back, plus a working air conditioner, we decided to celebrate with a night on the town!
We join Lynn and Pat on s/v CRICKET and walk to the Octopus’ Garden for a fun evening of fire and entertainment.
|Fiery Entertainment At The Octopus’ Garden|
|Fig. 1) Fiery Entertainment at Octopus’ Garden||Fig. 2) Rick, Lynn, Pat
|Fig. 3) Rick, Lynn, Pat
The potential of blood clots is always lurking in the background. Regular testing is the best way to monitor and prevent blood clots. In January of this year we fly back to the US and Rick receives his Alere INRatio®2 PT/INR Home Monitoring System.
These Alere home kits test blood coaguability (aka thickness). Too thin and a person runs the risk of excessive bleeding. Too thick and a person runs the risk of blood clots. Knowing his blood level gives Rick the freedom to travel.
Marcia is a registered nurse and an Alere trainer. We arrange for Marcia to meet us where we are staying, the Navy Lodge on the San Diego Navy Base. Marcia shows Rick how to use the Alere kit and how to test his blood. Rick received excellent hands-on training.
Before we leave San Diego we visit George and Renata. They were our neighbors when we lived in San Diego. Both Rick and George have lived in Europe and they always enjoy discussing a wide variety of national and international topics.
|Rick, Renata, George||Rick and George|
|Fig. 1) Rick, Renata, and George||Fig. 2) Rick and George
With a new supply of boat parts and the Alere test kit packed in our luggage, we fly back to Puerto Vallarta.
Because the home kit is new to Rick, he compares his test results with the lab at San Javier Hospital.
It soon became apparent that there was something very wrong. There was a wide discrepancy between the two tests. The Alere test results report Rick’s blood was in the safe range. The lab at the hospital said his blood was too thin. What was the problem? Our assumption is the home test kit was faulty.
Alere is willing to exchange the kit. Even mail it to us in Mexico. However, Mexican customs do not allow individuals to have medical equipment mailed to folks staying in Mexico. Our only choice was to fly to San Diego and make the exchange there.
We road the bus from the Tijuana Airport to the border crossing. This is the fence between the US and MX. Each cross represents a fatal attempt to enter into the USA.
Marcia agrees to meet us, again, in San Diego at the Navy Lodge. She and Rick review Rick’s testing method and confirmed his testing method is perfect. They compare the test results between the new and old test Alere home test kits. Results match.
As she was leaving the base, Marcia says with a smile, she loves Mexico and if Rick requires any more training, just let her know, she’s more than willing to fly to Puerto Vallarta.
We stay in San Diego a few more days and play Mexican Train Dominoes with our friends Pat and Lea Ann. Pat and Lea Ann introduced us to Mexican Train Dominoes. It nice to play be a set of rules we support.
|Rick, Lea Ann, Pat Playing Mexican Train Dominoes||Pat, Rick, and Lynn Posing for the Camera|
|Fig. 1) Rick, Lea Ann, Pat
Playing Mexican Train Dominoes
|Fig. 2) Pat, Lynn, Rick
Posing For The Camera
Then of course we, bought more boat parts and then caught a plane flew back to Puerto Vallarta.
With the new Alere test kit in hand, Rick returns to the hospital lab for double testing. This time another cruiser goes with us. She wants to make sure her home Alere test kit is testing accurately, too.
They both have their blood tested by the Hospital lab and their home Alere test kit. The blood tests show a wide discrepancy between the home test kit and the lab results!
There is great concern on all sides. The lab decided to send Rick and the other cruiser’s blood to be tested by an outside lab. I donate my blood to be tested as a control sample.
When the results come back, the test results from the outside lab and our Alere home test kits agree. The lab at Hospital San Javier determines there is an error with their lab testing equipment. The lab replaces their equipment immediately.
Rick returns after the new test equipment is installed and calibrated. New tests are taken. Results are compared. Blood test results are almost a perfect match.
We have always trusted the medical treatment we received at Hospital San Javier. The staff is professional and dedicated to the highest level of service. This was a tough patch for the lab and patient. By working together we were able to get to the source of the problem.
These test errors could have happened in any lab around the world. The difference here is Rick was trusted enough by the staff to be told the problem was with the hospital lab equipment. Knowing Rick can trust his Alere home test kit gives us the mobility our lifestyle demands.
|Lab Staff and Rick Egar, Rick, Lupita, (center front) Minerva||Yndria (Dr. Rios' Nurse) and Rick|
|Fig. 1) Lab Staff and Rick Egar, Rick,
|Fig. 2) Yndria (Dr. Rios’ Nurse)
For months, I’ve been filing claims and battling with the insurance company. I have filed over 10-inches of claims. Our cruising kitty has reached a new low. (Note: As of Oct. 2, 2012, the insurance company is still rejecting one of our claims. This one is for over $10,000 USD).
Meanwhile the powers behind attracting tourists to Mexico have planned a huge international event for the travel industry. The event is called Tianguis Turistico and opening night is at Marina Riviera Nayarit (our marina).
The construction company brings in earth moving equipment begins digging the holes for the cement foundations that will support the structures for the high-tech event. The marina begins to build a swimming pool. It is the end of February. They have about 45 days from start to finish.
TIME TO BUILD!
|Feb. 2, 2012 Future Swimming Pool and Location of Tianguis Turistico||Feb. 26, 2012 Earth Moving Equipment|
|Fig. 1) Future Swimming Pool and
Location of Tianguis Turistico
| Fig. 2) Earth Moving Equipment
Within a few short weeks the lot is transformed into an amazing outdoor theater. Complete with state-of-the-art aerial acrobat equipment, sophisticated video projectors, complex sound systems, fully equipped kitchen, search lights, and much more.
March 24 The venue is ready. The caterers, technicians, and entertainers arrive.
The performances are fantastic. They include song, dance, and breath taking high-wire acts. It is a night to remember.
All this for one single night!
|March 24, 2012. Show Time!||March 24, 2012. Show Time!||March 24, 2012. Show Time!|
|Fig. 1) March 24, 2012
|Fig. 2) March 24, 2012
|Fig. 3) March 24, 2012
After an exciting night of Tianguis Turístico entertainment we begin preparing for our TAP bus trip to Mazatlan.
Joe and Fran on s/v YANCEY brought our mail down from the States to Mazatlan. We used the mail delivery as an excuse to visit our friends in Marina Mazatlan.
The bus station in Puerto Vallarta is modern and clean. The TAP bus company knows how to please their passengers. Good drivers, the bus seats recline and the bus is air conditioned. Just before boarding the bus, each passenger is given water and snacks.
|Puerto Vallarta Bus Station||TAP Bus Care Package|
|Fig. 1) Puerto Vallarta Bus Station||Fig. 2) TAP Bus Care Package|
It was great to see Joe and Fran again. We decided to celebrate our visit by going out to dinner. We each ordered our favorite dishes. Lynn indulged by ordering her favorite meal, BBQ spare ribs. After dinner Fran and I toured our favorite bakery and loaded up!
|Joe, Fran, Lynn, and Rick||Dinner is Served|
|Fig. 1) Joe, Fran, Lynn, and Rick||Fig. 2) Dinner is Served|
Naturally, there are always boat projects in the wings. So when we returned to LA VITA, we both went back to work. Lynn rounded up her tool kit and began dismantling and cleaning the squeaking table fan.
Rick went back to repairing the teak decks.
After lunch, Rick stretches out in the cockpit for a well-deserved nap.
Meanwhile, Lynn is below filing boring insurance claims.
|Rick enjoying a well-deserved siesta In the Cockpit||Lynn Busy Filing Insurance Claims|
|Fig. 1 Rick Enjoying a Well-Deserved Siesta||Fig. 2 Separate Lynn Busy Filing Insurance Claims|
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