Paradise Village and Puerto Vallarta

We arrived at Paradise Village Marina in Nuevo Vallarta on Monday, April 6 after five lovely days in the comparatively remote Yelapa. What a change! Paradise is not the kind of place you would expect two travelers like us to want to be in – it is a popular tourist resort that is as far from “the real Mexico” as Alaska. But we are practical, too, and decided this marina management and marina conditions here were best suited for leaving Cool Change in others’ hands for hurricane season. So here we are again, sipping margaritas at poolside.

Paradise Village and Marina

Paradise Village and Marina

Cool Change's location in the marina - well protected from a storm surge during a severe storm

Cool Change’s location in the marina – well protected from a storm surge during a severe storm

It is about an hour bus ride on two separate buses to get to the real Puerto Vallarta from here, and so far in the last week and a half since we have been here, we have gotten all the way into town only once. But we have taken the bus out of Nuevo Vallarta several times for shopping expeditions, as well as having ridden our bicycles around the area, and we have even taken the dinghy out to explore the miles and miles of canals. The beach goes on forever. But one of Rick’s favorite things to do after a long day’s sweating while doing boat projects or whatever, is to throw our bathing suits on and go ride the crocodile slide! There are actually two of them and they are very fun and very fast.

Rick makes quite the splash!

Rick makes quite the splash!

One of the hotel's lobbys

One of the hotel’s lobbys

the marina is so far inland that the water is fresh enough to attract crocodiles!

the marina is so far inland that the water is fresh enough to attract crocodiles!

The hotel has a welcome show every week. It was touristy but fun.

The hotel has a welcome show every week. It was touristy but fun.

Rick in Old Town, Puerto Vallarta, stabilizing himself as he crosses a suspension pedestrian bridge.  It made me dizzy!

Rick in Old Town, Puerto Vallarta, stabilizing himself as he crosses a suspension pedestrian bridge. It made me dizzy!

Cruising the canals by dinghy at night. The scariest thing was that the occasional floating coconut looked from a distance a lot like a crocodile head!

Cruising the canals by dinghy at night. The scariest thing was that the occasional floating coconut looked from a distance a lot like a crocodile head!

This ramp leads down to the small dock we found alongside a canal, and leads up to a cute little romantic restaurant called Fajita Republic.  Yes, a little Gringo, but that is what you find in Nuevo Vallarta.  Not many people arrive by dinghy, though!

This ramp leads down to the small dock we found alongside a canal, and leads up to a cute little romantic restaurant called Fajita Republic. Yes, a little Gringo, but that is what you find in Nuevo Vallarta. Not many people arrive by dinghy, though!

Romantic lighting in Fajita Republic

Romantic lighting in Fajita Republic

Rick content after a good meal at Fajita Republic

Rick content after a good meal at Fajita Republic

Rick worried when he found unusual scat on the deck of Cool Change one day. We came back to the boat one afternoon and found the culprit. Rick threw a sandal at him and he dove into the water. We both felt bad for throwing the shoe at him!

Rick worried when he found unusual scat on the deck of Cool Change one day. We came back to the boat one afternoon and found the culprit. Rick threw a sandal at him and he dove into the water. We both felt bad for throwing the shoe at him!

Rick waiting for the bus with a full backpack of groceries - one of our regular pastimes

Rick waiting for the bus with a full backpack of groceries – one of our regular pastimes

We did get Cool Change out for a night this week – we took her to Punta de Mita and anchored out, and then had a wonderful sail in the afternoon thermals back home. That will probably be her last sail until November, since from now on we have to decommission her to be ready to handle a storm in our absence.

Now we are in closing up mode – we have a list a mile long of things to do to get Cool Change ready for us not to be on her for two months, while the hurricane season begins – removing the sails, clearing the deck, adding extra docklines, emptying the perishables and grains from the cupboards, etc. It is also a good time to take care of regular maintenance items, like oil changes and interior deep cleaning etc.

We leave at the beginning of May for California and then return at the end of June from Chicago. I am a little nervous about returning to the States for two reasons: one, I know my lifestyle has changed tremendously and I worry I will find the pace and exactness of things in the States to be uncomfortable; and two, we have set up a ton of things to get done when we are there so we are compounding the anxiety! Oh well, it’ll still be fun!

Once we return to Mexico, we hope to then head to inland Mexico for some traveling in the cooler mountain regions during the summer, interspersed with a few visits to Cool Change throughout. We are hoping to get our temporary resident visas when we are back in the States so we don’t have to leave Mexico every six months, and we intend to get our senior discount cards, which will get us half off on a lot of things including transportation in Mexico. Viva México!

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