LEE A. WOOD
Just South of Punta Perula we had seen a sign saying, `Punta Serena 7 Km'.
By the time we passed the turnoff to La Manzanilla, Serena, and I, still hadn't found the turn off to Punta Serena and I am sure we had gone more than 7 Km.
Having been in Manzanilla only two days before, we thought we better check out La Manzanilla, so we turned back.
It wasn't quite dark yet and we had time to make it to Melaque if there was nothing more in this Manzanilla than there had been in the other one, which is North of Puerto Vallarta.
How to describe PARADISE. If Mexico is PARADISE, then Le Manzanilla is the very heart of it. The main street is all of 4 blocks long. There are maybe 10 stores. 4 hotels, 2 or 3 bungalows, 2 or 3 B&B's, and miles of sandy beach.
SERENA STANDS IN FRONT OF THE HOTEL.
TO HER LEFT IS A BEACH ACCESS.
BEHIND HER THE STREET SPLITS.
IT IS SUPPOSED TO BE ONE WAY TRAFFIC ON EACH,
BUT NO ONE SEEMS TO CARE.
By driving around and asking directions we found 3 hotels ranging with prices of; P200, P350, and P425.
Of course the P200 was full so we opted for the P350. A very nice room, quite and spacious.
The rates are reasonable, the rooms are clean, and there is hot water.
Why is it, I hate stairs, I never get ground floor. (I know, I know, I need the exercise.)
Actually, this time, I got ground floor, behind the dinning area.
A lovely large room that I neglected to take pictures of.
THREE LITTLE RESTAURANTS, SIDE BY SIDE.
DURING OUR STAY WE ATE IN EACH OF THE THEM.
THEY WERE ALL GOOD.
We wandered down the street and then found some little eateries. We had a most delicious supper and made the acquaintance of a man from White rock, B. C. He was wearing a T-shirt that said, `Homeland Security'. Below this was a picture of four Native, North Americans in full war regalia. Below the picture it said, `Fighting Terrorists Since 1492'.
In other words, Homeland security has been a waste of time, and money, since Columbus landed in the Americas, or not. I guess it is open to several interpretations.
A pretty quite day, slept late, wandered about checking out a few sides streets, and the beach. Met our friend from White Rock, which he calls Roca Blanca. He introduced us to Gilbert, the mayor of La Manzanilla.
GALERIA LA MANZANILLA
LOOKS LIKE IT IS THE BASE OF A LARGE COMPLEX
BUT THE COLOURFUL CASAS ARE
ON A CLIFF BEHIND THE GALLERY.
The sand at Punta Perula was much nicer then in PV. The waves in Punta Perula were smaller, with less undertow than PV.
La Manzanilla put Punta Perula to shame, smaller more gentler waves, smoother, finer sand, little if no, undertow. Perfect for children and adults. Again mostly deserted. Must be off season.
We had breakfast at one of the little outdoor restaurants. Quesadillas con queso y pollo, cheese, and chicken, and huevos con chorizo, eggs scrambled with spicy sausage.
Then we enquired at one of the bungalows, they wanted P425 per night.
We decided La Manzanilla was too nice a place to leave so Serena walked back to the hotel to pay for a second night. While she was gone I found a cheaper hotel, but it didn't have hot water.
Then I found an internet café and the proprietor told me that a man had started a recycle program the previous week. That killed my plans for moving here.
Damn, it was such a perfect place to retire.
I guess I have to face it. I don't have the money to start a business and Serena would never be happy in Mexico. There are not enough people for her to communicate with. She is too old to learn English, or Spanish, as I am too old to learn Chinese.
I guess, I am stuck living in Vancouver for the rest of my life, if you can call that living, where she has relatives to talk to and the stores have food that she can eat. Though she has enjoyed the foods in Mexico.
On the beach we found several dead skates, or sting rays, and a few dead puffer fish. Out in the water we found a dead flute fish. Or is that, trumpet fish?
Late in the afternoon we spent a lot of time with my back to the sun while I was taking pictures of Serena petting sting rays.
We found a large, shallow, back-water with many skates. Probably a breeding ground. We petted many of them and took many pictures.
If you take two fingers of one hand and push on the middle of their back you can hold them against the bottom, then with the other hand you can stoke them with your fingers.
This also caused my calves to be exposed to the sun and they are now bright red.
SOUTH END OF THE BEACH.
THIS AREA WAS VERY SHALLOW AND THERE WERE HUNDREDS OF SKATES.
SERENA FINDS A DEAD SKATE.
'LOVE IS A MANY SPLENDORED THING'
HOW MANY CAN YOU COUNT?
SERENA WAS COUNTING THEM.
I SAID, "DON'T COUNT THEM, PET THEM"
A diving instructor showed me one time.
THE PELICANS WERE HAPPY, LOTS OF LITTLE FISH.
STORK, OR CRANE?
I WAS HELPING HIM TO BEACH HIS BOAT
WE WERE WAITING FOR LARGER WAVES TO LIFT IT
SO WE COULD PULL IT IN FURTHER.
At the North end of the beach, behind the RV grounds is a laguna.
That night, after an afternoon of swimming, reading on the beach, getting sunburned, and exploring skates, we had a excellent meal at a roadside stand.
We had seen the stand opening the previous evening but we were hungry and didn't feel like waiting for him to open. Last night we made a point of waiting until he was open. We met a man from Vancouver, Washington, USA. Then our friend from Roca Blanca showed up and we all ate together. Serena, and I, each, had three tacos, pork, beef, and chorizo. Then Serena ordered a steak, BBQ. Delicious.
After returning to the hotel we discovered that Serena's shoulder was sunburned. I guess I missed a patch when I was applying the lotion, in the morning. Then she noticed that the entire area of my lower back was bright red.
When we had left in the morning, I hadn't put any lotion on. I determined that I had been using too much lotion and wasn't getting brown, so I thought I would go without and just make sure I kept tuning around. Famous last words!
We took one last walk around town, took some more pictures, loaded the car and left.
We returned from venturing South and spent another night. The roadside stand, where our mouths had been watering to feast, was closed. We sat on the top floor, overlooking the street, at Jolanda's and had; Chicken Cordon Bleu, Mashed potatoes with cheese, on top, instead of butter, red cabbage. Chinese rib-eye, rice, tossed salad. Red wine. Absolutely delicious.
RESTAURANT ON THE GROUND FLOOR,
KITCHEN AND INTERNET ON THE SECOND FLOOR,
DINNING AND BAR ON THE TOP FLOOR.
Wednesday night at Jolanda's: Food is served Smorgasbord style and each Wednesday is a different style of Asian food, Chinese, Indonesian, Thailand, etc. As each meal is carefully prepared it is essential to know how many are coming so advance reservations, with deposit, are required.
Doors close shortly after the start of the meal and those who are late, starve.
A MAP ON A BULLETIN BOARD ACROSS THE STREET FROM JOLANDA'S
THE MORNING BUS TO MELAQUE AND BARRA DE NAVIDAD
RELATED WEB SITES
COSTA ALEGRE PROPERTIES (aka La Manzanilla Info) Honest Real Estate
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