After staying in Puerto Los Gatos for a while we started getting itchy feet and since the weather was so calm we figured we'd go ahead and make a 'big jump,' all the way to Puerto Escondido.
Puerto Escondido (Escon-Gringo to some of the more cynical cruisers) is the home of Loreto Fest, a big cruiser party, that had just completed a few days before. We really only went in for one reason, to hook up with our friends Stan and MJ from SolMate. But since we were there anyway we thought we'd go ahead and get water.
PE has great fresh water. But only one spigot. The spigot is on a sea wall about 8 ft high, and the depth next to the wall is only about 4 ft (NAKIA needs 6). However, it's much deeper only a few feet from the wall. There are two ways to get water in PE. You run back and forth between the spigot and your boat with jugs or you can Med-moor to the sea wall and run a hose ashore. Since we were coming in for a quick turn around we decided on the second method.
Before you can get water in PE, you have to call Jose. Did I neglect to mention that the water spigot is under lock and key? Well, Jose has the key. Before you can get a single drop you have to call on the radio and in your best Spanish say "Jose, necesito agua, por favor." He'll come back in his best English, "OK, OK!"
Having contacted Jose, we called Stan and MJ to take our stern line for the Med-moor. (Med-mooring is done by dropping an anchor and then backing down toward a wall or other fixed structure and then tying a stern line to the wall. It's called Med-moor because the only way to moor in many ports in the Mediterranean is by this method.) We had one problem though, we didn't have any way to get our stern line to the wall. Enter John, super sailor. I quickly tied a monkey's fist using some old line and a tennis ball and then tied a 50 ft piece of small line onto the monkey's fist. I'd throw the fist ashore with our stern line attached so we wouldn't have to get to close to the shallow water at the base of the wall.
All set, we entered the harbor and went toward the spigot wall bow first to check the depth. Finding it sufficient, I pivoted the boat around, stern to the wall and motored forward to drop the bow anchor. This maneuver got a "you're showing off" rating from MJ. Before we dropped the bow anchor, Linda and I switched positions. She would drive and I'd handle the heavy anchor while I gave directions via hand signals from the bow (this is our normal anchoring procedure). In went the anchor, back went the boat, and just before we got too close I snubbed the anchor chain and walked back to the cockpit to throw the monkey's fist to Stan (this got an "You even have a monkey's fist!" rating from Stan). He tied off the stern line and we were set. You'd think we'd done it before. After that it was short work to fill NAKIA's tanks.
For our departure Stan just released the stern line and the anchor pulled us away from the wall. The only hiccup came when I wanted to tip Jose. I put a bill in the monkey's fist and threw it ashore, but for whatever reason I did it left handed and instead of arcing cleanly to the top of the wall it went wide left and too high, almost hitting a guy in his dinghy at the base of the wall. Oh well, you can't always be perfect.
John and Linda