Tuesday, July 6, 2021

I'm Back In La Paz, Intermezzo Is On the Way

I arrived in La Paz, Baja California Sur (Mexico) on Saturday afternoon and have been enjoying getting reacquainted with this lovely small city as I wait for the ship transporting Intermezzo to arrive. The Chipolbrok Star is scheduled to arrive tomorrow night and unloading operations to begin the next morning.

La Paz is just as beautiful as I remember it, but Covid is a big concern. The case load is pretty high (two-week average daily cases >5 per 100,000), the hospitals are reportedly full, and vaccination rates are relatively low compared to the US. People are wearing face masks everywhere and practicing social distancing,  restrictions are in place for businesses and restaurants, the malecón (public seafront) is closed, and the streets seem more empty and quiet than I remember them. Nonetheless, life goes on and I am enjoying walking around the city, eating at my favorite restaurants and trying some new ones.

In a blog post during my first visit to La Paz, I wrote that "I really like this town...If I were thinking of a place to live in Mexico, La Paz would definitely be on my list." Well, this is my third visit and I'm planning on making this Intermezzo's home base for the foreseeable future.

I'm converting my blog posts for The Voyage from San Francisco to New York (2015-2019) into a book, mostly as a gift to my Mom, also for limited publication and distribution to family, friends and fans. Coincidentally, I started working on the chapter "La Paz and The Sea of Cortez" right when I arrived here. It feels a bit surreal to be reading my blog posts from late 2015 when Renee and I arrived in La Paz in November 2015, near the beginning of my first attempt at The Voyage and now to be back, almost six years and over 23,000 nautical miles of sailing later. So much has changed outside of me, inside me.

I'm so grateful to have this blog as a memoir of all that I experienced sailing Intermezzo. I think the book is going to be a good one, as it will arrange all the blog posts into chapters, each with a preface of highlights, retrospectives and adding a little about what was going on for me personally over all those years. Looking back, I think my sailing adventure and writing about it kept me on a steady course as my "land life" experienced a good deal of turmoil.

Once I unload Intermezzo off the ship, I'll fill up the diesel tanks and head to a marina for a couple of days to clean up the boat, provision and prepared for the three-day passage to Puerto Escondido. I plan on departing La Paz Sunday morning, making stops at Isla San Francisco and Bahia Los Gatos along the way and arriving in Puerto Escondido next Tuesday.

Once in Puerto Escondido, we'll haul out Intermezzo and prepare for long-term lay up on the hard for the hurricane season. If all goes as planned, I'll be flying out of Loreto next Sunday bringing an end to the long ordeal of getting Intermezzo back to the Sea of Cortez.