Potlucks, Pickles and Packages

We celebrated Christmas and rang in the New Year in La Cruz de Huanacaxtle or thankfully just called La Cruz, a friendly little town about 10 miles North of Puerto Vallarta.  La Cruz and PV are located on a big bay called Bahia Banderas (Banderas Bay).

La Cruz coastline

La Cruz coastline

La Cruz

Closest we got to church in La Cruz

And although we missed seeing our family and friends and even a little snow, we did enjoy several potluck parties to celebrate the holidays with some of our old boating pals and several new ones.

Happy New Year

Happy New Year

If you are reading this blog and planning your own sailing adventure, don’t forget to add disposable serving dishes and easy one pot recipes to your inventory list, because if there is one thing cruisers love more than calm seas, it’s a potluck.   So everyone feel free to send me your favorite easy recipes that don’t include mayonnaise. (hot sun + mayo = green boaters)

Since we used to keep Neko in Puerto Vallarta and had spent a lot of time there, we decided to only take a day trip into PV proper and focus our time exploring other parts of Banderas Bay.

La Cruz also gave us the opportunity to catch up with our old PV marina neighbors, Val & Ron who now live full time in La Cruz.  We had a great dinner with them hearing about their new life on land.   A big thanks to Val for the ride to the Mega, not having to schlep groceries back on the bus was a real treat!

Mary's maiden voyage on the stand up paddle board

Mary’s maiden voyage on the stand up paddle board

We took road trips to Sayulita (click here for side trip post), Puerto Vallarta and sailed over to Punta Mita (that’s when we saw the whales).   Some days we broke out the boat “toys” which included kitesurfing for Peter and an opportunity for us to christen the stand up paddle board.

Emily, Tom (Girl Four) Mary & Peter rockin' night at Philos

Emily, Tom (Girl Four) Mary & Peter rockin’ night at Philos

Plus great nights out with Emily and Tom from  “Girl Four” listening to live music at Philos (a local bar run by Philo, a timeless musician with a kickin’ band)

I even got Captain Pete out on the dance floor.

Philo and Leon jammin'

Philo and Leon jammin’

Leon, one of the guys in Philo’s band is an 85 years old dude who wears every kind of percussion instrument you can imagine and the crowd loves him.    If you are ever in La Cruz, have dinner at Tacos on the Street, it is a family business that has grown from literally tacos on the street to a sit down restaurant, with their specialty being carne asada tacos.   You know if a place famous for their beef still does a fantastic veggie version for this pain in the ass gringo, it is good.

We went for a crazy dinner with the crews from “Heavy Metal”, “Destiny,” “Ayla May” and “Permanently Temporary”, which included more dogs than people LOL.

Destiny's child(ren) 2 of the 5 dogs in our group

Destiny’s child(ren)
2 of the 5 dogs in our group

Traveling with Lucy has its obstacles but since most restaurants and bars are open air, she is welcomed almost everywhere.   So 11 people brought 5 dogs along for a fun dinner and night on the town.

Best of all, every Sunday La Cruz hosts a farmer’s/fish market that rivals many I’ve seen in California.

La Cruz farmer's market

La Cruz farmer’s market

If you go, go hungry because along with fresh fish and produce they have a lot of prepared foods and baked goods.

Who knew you could buy fresh homemade dill pickles from a Southern lady living in Mexico.  Thankfully you can!!

Yikes, as I write this it dawns on me, all we do is eat and drink.



Although we had a great time in this area, we ended up staying longer than we planned waiting for a package of boat parts for various repairs.  Long and boring story short, thanks to my Dad’s heroic shipping skills, the package made it to Mexico in record time, but spent forever in customs jail and, because DHL sucks, and it is impossible to call a toll free # in the states from another country and nobody seems to have direct phone numbers anymore, the package was sent BACK to the U.S. against our explicit instructions (warning never try to send liquid to another country).   So with those lessons learned and a refund from DHL, we sail South for new adventures, new friends and hopefully a new package of parts waiting for us in Manzanillo.

Click here to see more La Cruz photos

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