Sunday, October 25, 2015


Hurricane Patricia, curiously, made landfall between Manzanillo and Puerto Vallarta near the beachside town of San Patricio.

While there was damage, some of it serious, there appears to have been no deaths or grave injuries.

Which, considering the size of the hurricane, is a miracle.

As I have said on more than one occasion on this blog, Judy (SWMBO) and I lived in Mexico for nearly five years back in the 1980's in a sort of early retirement.

When I was asked what I was doing down there at such a young age (late 40's) I always replied that I was conducting intensive research into the effects of tequila on the average American male.

We lived most of our time down there in Guadalajara.

But we spent a lot of time at the Pacific coast, right where Hurricane Patricia came in.

San Patricio is the only town by that name in Mexico and, therefore, has one helluva St. Patrick's Day fiesta. We were there for one such celebration.

There is an adjoining town known as Melaque and it's always a problem knowing which town you're in.

Whichever it was, we met up with a bunch of old and new friends, many of them "yachties", as the people who live on their boats and cruise the coast are called.

The evening drinkathon was held in a beachfront bar and restaurant called Los Pelicanos, run by a feisty and funny woman named Philomena.

But the next day, her bar had been converted with a makeshift altar placed across the opening to the beach and a priest was there celebrating mass.

It was a special service for the fishermen and they gathered on their boats just off shore to listen to the priest's words.

Afterwards the priest boarded a dinghy which was pushed and rowed out so he could go from boat to boat sprinkling them with holy water and blessing them.

In spite of our hangovers it was a moving experience.

Just up the coast a short distance is Tenacatita Bay and several small fishing villages.

We spent time in one of them, La Manzanilla.

One day when I was walking on the beach I noticed an excited crowd looking at the water.

A school of fish had come in close to the beach and several fishermen in boats had surrrounded them with a net.

People from the village rushed to help the fishermen bring in their catch.

The fish were dumped into a boat on the beach and covered to keep them from spoiling in the sun while the townspeople waited to sell their huge catch to the local co-op.

I bought a red snapper for a ridiculously low price and took it home for our dinner.

The other direction from San Patricio-Melaque lies the town of Barra de Navidad. 

It, too, is a great place to watch the sea. And the gringos who stare at it.

Judy captioned this photo "Bruce refuses to leave the beach until the sun sets."

A short time later it did.

In spite of what you may hear from some of our U.S. politicians, during our time in Mexico we found the great majority of the Mexican people we met to be warm and friendly.

I am sad for the troubles they face now in the wake of this hurricane but I know they will take it in stride and quickly return to their normal lives.

With smiles on their faces.

¡Buena suerte, amigos!