Wednesday, August 25, 2010

East Cape Magic Village 300 Race

I hope that's a decent translation. It's actually called,"Cabo del Este Pueblo Magico 300" But what it really means is there's a big off-road race on Sunday the 29th. You should check out the map and find a good spot to park and watch the race go by. What is really the best is a slightly elevated spot that views a straight stretch with a curve somewhere in it. Ya gotta see these machines go around curves! If you can find a straight stretch with a curve and a JUMP, you're there. Bring snacks and beverages and prepare for the weather before you go; it could be boiling hot or it could be raining.

If you've never been to one of these off-road races, they are a lot of fun. Most of the participants are local boys and some are darn good drivers. The Jeffries family for example has been doing this for a lot of years here in Baja along with many others.

If you go, be extremely aware of where you are at all times.  These guys move FAST.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Cabo Business People

I met a local couple the other day while working in the office out at Cabo Riviera in La Ribera. They were having a nice quiet lunch and I verbally bludgeoned them into taking a tour.  Well maybe it wasn't quite that bad.  They actually went willingly. During the tour I found out quite a bit about them and decided they provide the type of subject matter I'm looking for. And no, they didn't buy a lot.  Not that day.

You may have read the tongue-in-cheek article in the Gringo Gazette about Robert Jankovics and his service of providing US license plates for us "extranjeros" who have trouble renewing our original plates.  I know several people who use this service and are extremely grateful for it. Believe me when I tell you, it's much better to have legal plates than some of the other options we use. The local cops are wise to the home-made sticker scam. If your state refuses to renew your plates because the car is not present, this may be your best next option.

He and his wife however are much more involved in the area than simply providing license plates. They also have a hotel located in Cabo San Lucas, Hotel Cabo Paraiso, condo rentals and some other stuff.  I should have written it down....... They also have available a private beach on the sunset side of the Pedragal that is a beautiful site for weddings and other events.  Here's a couple of photos:

That's all I have for now.

No Bad Days

Friday, August 20, 2010

A Journalist's View of Mexico

American journalist Linda Ellerbee who has spent several years in Puerto Vallarta has written an  honest and straightforward article about many of the positive aspects of Mexico. Every country has their dark underside but I'm a bit tired of the US press portraying the country of Mexico as a dastardly den of degenerate drug dealers.

I'm not going to beat you with my soapbox but if you don't already understand this one thing, please try and understand it now:   The drug killings along the border are primarily caused by the insatiable demand for illegal drugs IN THE US. This problem was not created by the country of Mexico. This is simply supply and demand economics 101 but with illegal products that people are willing to kill and die for.

Here's some homework for you:
How are the drugs distributed in the US?
How are billions of dollars worth of drugs taken across the border without help within the US?
Why aren't there ever reports of the FBI closing in on an American "drug lord" counterpart inside the US?

Most of you are already familiar with Mexico but I hope you enjoy this article. It's by Linda Ellerbee who is well known in the world of journalism.  Click on the link below.
Mexico: One Journalist's View

One more thing:  Since I'm on a roll here, check these statistics.  Interesting.

“Mexico’s homicide rate has fallen steadily from a high in 1997 of 17 per 100,000 people to 14 per 100,000 in 2009, a year marked by an unprecedented spate of drug slayings concentrated in a few states and cities, Public Safety Secretary Genaro Garcia Luna said. The national rate hit a low of 10 per 100,000 people in 2007, according to government figures compiled by the independent Citizens’ Institute for Crime Studies.
By comparison, Venezuela, Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala have homicide rates of between 40 and 60 per 100,000 people, according to recent government statistics. Colombia was close behind with a rate of 33 in 2008. Brazil’s was 24 in 2006, the last year when national figures were available.
Mexico City’s rate was about 9 per 100,000 in 2008, while Washington, D.C. was more than 30 that year.”

I'm just saying.........

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Storm Season

It's that time of year again.  There's a tropical storm below us that looks pretty harmless at this point. Check out progress at Wunderground among other sites.
However, now is the time to start thinking about storm shutters and preparing for hurricanes.  If you don't use storm shutters (many don't here in Baja) and you don't have a generator (see last parenthesis) at least do the basic things that will help make a storm a little more bearable.  I've been through several and never had wind damage that amounted to anything until JOHN.  Nasty storm. Took out 6 sliders and a couple of windows.

Bad things that can happen sometimes as the result of a hurricane:
1. We lose power
2. A bridge or critical arroyo gets washed out
3. A water main breaks
4. Stuff breaks including windows (think about water damage)
5. The gas stations run out of gas
6. The food stations run out of food
7. It gets hotter and more humid afterward than is bearable
Etc etc

On the bright side of this is that in the last few years, Baja California Sur has made big improvements to the infrastructure.  We have bridges over all the major arroyos.  We have many more gas stations than just a few years ago. The power company is taking a more active role in storm preparation.  We have many more grocery stores. More hardware, more everything. More cows on the highway. I just threw that last one in there for free. So recovery from a storm these days is in many ways, easier to handle.

But you could be stuck at your house with no gas, no electricity, no food, no flashlights or candles or A/C and so on. Picture this if you will:  It's 8pm.  There's no power. You have no lights, no refrigerator, no TV, NO A/C!  Waddya gonna do? It's WAY too hot to snuggle. You can't play cards in the dark. So picture clearly all these things and decide the level of protection you need and then the level you want and make some decisions.

Or buy airline tickets at the first sign of trouble.
Where's the fun in that you COWARDS!

Have some stuff ahead of time:
Gasoline:  Nothing worse than not being able to drive around after a storm and look at broken stuff. I think we won't run out of gas so quickly any more since the proliferation of gas stations in the area.  We even have 2 in Los Barriles now!   But remember: just because you're paranoid doesn't mean we WON'T run out of gas.
Food:  Same deal. We have enough stores around that if you have a car (and gas) you might be ok.
Propane:  If you're using a gas stove or gas water heater, check your gas NOW.
Electricity:  Small generators are getting cheaper and cheaper. A generator that costs under $1000 can even run an small A/C unit if you're careful.
Kayaks:  Several years ago, a bunch of enthusiastic Buena Vista/Los Barriles fellas lead by Steve Chism took their kayaks down one of the raging arroyos. Sounds like a self-destructive suicidal way.  Forget the kayaks.

This is by no means an all-inclusive list but if you go to the National Hurricane Center site, they have a BUNCH of good stuff for you.

Get ready or not. Here they come.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

The Best Bisbee East Cape Yet

In my opinion which is worth exactly what you paid for it, this was a great fishing tournament. There were plenty of fish caught, lots of fish released, and good stories too.

Congratulations to the Bisbee family and Clicerio Mercado. They put on a good show.

Thanks to the Spa Buena Vista Hotel and the Valdez family, Cabo Riviera for sponsorship and to all the participants. For the final results for the winners and winnings, go to the Bisbee's site.

Here's a few highlights:

Day one, Tom Lansing on the Dreamweaver weighed this monster 581# Black Marlin. It's right there in between the little girls with the blue jackets. Tom had a good tourney, check the photo at the bottom.

This young man whose name may be Jordan, sorry it's an age thing, while fishing on the "Awesome" brought in a nice 119 # Tuna to steal the prize from the boat who had already weighed a 118 pounder. The Awesome had the daily winner for about 45 minutes when Don Whittier (pictured below) brought in a 120# Tuna to take it from the Awesome. Wow. The thrill of victory 3 times and the agony of defeat twice. All in one day and in one category. That's fishing.

Don not only swiped the victory from the team on the Awesome, he won the Tuna class all three days. Hard fishing and a little luck. Congrats.

In case you don't recognize this illustrious threesome, on the left is the Governor of Baja Sur, Narciso Agundez who fished with Oscar Daccarett (in the middle and who has won a few tournaments during his fishing career.) And on the end is Martha McNab, a local Buena Vista girl who was recently accepted into the Royal Billfish Slam Club after catching all 9 species of billfish. She is one of only SEVEN ladies who have accomplished this.

Hey it's Tom again! Nice Dorado guys.

That's all folks. Can't wait for next year!