Ensenada and beyond

Noon Position: 31 47.1 N 116 44.2 W
Course: South west Speed: 3 knots
Wind: North west F2-3 light to gentle breeze
Sea: slight Swell: west 1.5 meters
Weather: mostly sunny, mild

Continuing on from yesterday, after securing alongside the first order of business was to visit the marina office and organise clearing into Mexico. Cruiseport Marina had been recommended to e by a cruiser in San Diego as they help with the clearing in process. This proved to be good advice. Jonathon, the young marina manager, knew exactly what was required, spoke excellent English, and a driver and car was laid on to take me to the customs and immigration office, the driver pretty much holding my hand, speaking to the respective officials and guiding me in what had to be done. So while the marina fee was relatively expensive, given that it included this level of assistance, for a short stay it was pretty good value.

Once I had finished clearing in I was free to go ashore for a wander and a little bit of sight seeing. While the small city appeared to be iconically Mexican in its architecture, what struck me most was its lower level of affluence than a typical US city, especially San Diego from where we had just come, and the relative level of peace and quiet, in particular a much lower level of traffic and other background machine noise, especially aircraft. Here most of the streets were wide, but their were a lot fewer cars. Few buildings reached higher than one story, and there were no large shopping malls in sight. Roads and footpaths were cracked, uneven, and potholed, with lots of earthy dirt to be seen poking through and sifting its way along the gutters. The facades of most buildings looked in sore need of a coat of paint. The cars were small and mostly old. People were dark skinned, small in stature, neatly dressed, softly spoken and smiled a lot. Overall, the small city seemed more lived in and less artificial than most Western cities, and my spirit definitely felt a lot calmer wandering the streets of Ensenada than those of San Diego.

In the evening I tried out a local restaurant, one that looked colourful, inexpensive, and well patronised by the indigenous population. It turned out to be good fare, and indeed very cheap, though I will confess that some of the flavours were strange to my palate. Several hours later I am pleased to report that no ill effects have been noticed.

I enjoyed a restful sleep, more peaceful than I have experienced in quite a long time, and I arose at a respectable hour feeling keen to continue on our way. The forecast is for relatively light winds, but mostly favourable so at a little after 10 a.m. we once more cast off the dock lines and headed out to sea to continue on our journey south.

All is well.