Wednesday, January 03, 2007

So was that a sting ray in the water or was it???

LA MANZANILLA, Mexico - We arrived at the village of La Manzanilla late today and decided to take a quick dip in warm Tenacatita Bay, only to have Admiral Fox put her foot firmly on what she thinks was a sting ray.

A sting ray, for all you aquaphobes.

I was a few feet away and saw the beast launch out of the water after the Admiral did her fancy footwork. And while I won't swear that it was a ray (it could have been a sleeping flounder, I suppose) it sure looked like one and I shuffled my feet right back out of the water and up onto the beach.

Several years ago at a beach at St. Petersburg Florida, I waded out one morning and launched myself swimming, only to realize that I was swimming in about four feet of water with a school of hundreds of sting rays swimming directly below me.

When I turned towards shore (still swimming, my feet were going nowhere near the sand) I realized how many of the damn things there were. Eventually, the herd (flock, school, gaggle, swarm?) thinned out and I was able to put my feet down and run like hell to get to shore.

Tomorrow, when the water is more clear, I'll go out into the surf again and take a look. No night swims are planned for this evening.

The other reason to avoid night swimming is the lagoon full of 10-25 foot crocodiles in a swamp about 400 yards from our beach. Yup, 400 yards.

Photos of those beasties should follow tomorrow, I believe. I'm not going down there tonight to get any pix.

Rain clouds in Puerto Vallarta
Rain clouds in Puerto Vallarta

The road trip south started out in soggy conditions after a night of torrential rains around Puerto Vallarta. The nice thing is that the temperature stays about the same in the rain, low 80s. The bad thing is that the humidity shoots up to about 110 percent and we were total sweatballs after loading the car for the road trip down.

None of that is at issue here at Palapa Joe's in La Manzanilla where the surf is crashing outside (chasing away sting rays, we hope), the refrigerator is filled with various beverages and the promise of a catch of fresh fish for dinner tomorrow night has already been made.

Now we just need to find a fish market to fulfill that promise.

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