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Sunday, January 11, 2009

Back in "Cruiser" mode

Wow!  We just counted the days and we've been in Mexico eight days already!  Ah the joys of not wearing a watch nor having a calendar on the wall!

At dictionary.com the word “cruise” is defined: “to sail about on a pleasure trip” and a "cruiser" by my definition is a person living and traveling aboard a smallish boat and on a budget.  It also describes a unhurried lifestyle without a particular destination or time line.

The island of "Isla Mujeres" in a nice change from the fast pace of America and the prices sure are nice too.  The exchange rate is nearly fourteen MXN (pesos) to the US dollar which is considerably higher than my last visit in 2005/2006 when it was around eleven to one.  Think two margaritas for $50MXN ($3.50USD) and three tacos with rice, beans chips and salsa for $30MXN (2.20USD).  Not too bad to have a nice sit down dinner with a ocean view for under six US dollars.

The island is about three miles long and one to three blocks wide with the main town on the North end so everything is within easy walking distance.  A pedestrian street runs the length of the town and is lined with restaurants of all descriptions.  A modern and well stocked grocery store offers convenience and a local Mercado (Market) offers plenty of choices of fresh fruits veggies, meats and fresh tortillas.  Primary transportation after walking is scooters or golf carts and a few cars.

We are making lots of friends within the cruising community and gaining intel on the best places to visit as we make our way south to Belize in February.  We are very excited to explore the amazing offshore reefs and look for ship wrecks and treasure from Spanish galleons.

Yesterday we took three other cruising couples with us on a snorkel expedition and sailed Pacficia a few miles North of Isla Mujeres to find a nice reef to swim on.  It was an international outing with s/v Epsilon Michel & Josee (Canada & France), s/v Xenos Julie & Slater (Ireland & USA), and s/v Pandura Uli & Maureen (Switzerland & Australia).

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