Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Return of, escape from civilization
Last night I met Scottie at the Flophouse, where we picked up an amp and the Capt and off we went to Troncones Beach.
There's only one road into and out of Zihautanejo, and it runs along the coast. It's two lanes and sometimes has a shoulder, but more often not. This is the road I took on the "Express" to Barra de Navidad.
The main road in Troncones is not paved (unless the pavement was buried under the ever-present sand) except for large concrete topes. A lot of them, strung along this road.
Our destination was the Inn at Manzanillo Bay, a palm covered resort of 6 bungalows situated around a glistening pool. The restaurant was 1st class.
After we set up our gear, Scottie suggested we eat. His meal (shrimp) was free and my excellent hamburger and fries with limonada ran 120 pesos.
It was my hope that we could do a few numbers together to get a sense of things before too many people showed up, but Scottie launched into his gig without a warm up. I played the bass (through my guitar synthesizer) behind his guitar work and singing, and he turned to me and "take off" which meant, I thought, that I should jump in and solo. I hit a switch on the guitar and I go from bass to jazz guitar and "take off."
He had brought some sheet music with him; I was able to reprise "Scotch and Soda," a 1st Mate favorite, and play rhythm for his occasional solos. "St. James Infirmary" and some slow blues allowed me to switch to muted trumpet solos for a nice, smoky feel. It was Scottie's show all the way though, and I was just the side-man. I stumbled once in while over an unexpected chord change and had trouble with some of Scot's fast-moving, fast-changing R&B tunes… trying to keep an unfamiliar tempo going while Scottie soloed. A humbling experience at times.
Moments of brilliance, moments of shame. Just like life.
On the return trip, we both agreed to forgo the Wednesday night joint performance at the Flophouse. Too much work needed to be done and there was no time to do it. I'm getting ready to sail north and a trip of a thousand miles in a sailboat requires a lot of preparation.
I woke up Wednesday morning with a wrenched back, from carrying the amps and other gear, I think. I planned to take it easy. Then the local provisioner, Ishmael, sent out his panga with my fuel and water purchase. 35 gallons of diesel in 5 gallon jugs, and one 5 gallon jug of gasoline and 5 gallons of drinking water. So despite the pain, I'm storing away this stuff.
Yesterday Ishmael delivered my refilled propane tank, I was able to buy some block ice from a restaurant, and I scored big at the ISSST market, finding Ades soy milk on sale. So now, I can make espressos on the boat, have hot water for washing and showers, run the generator for lots of lights and entertainment gizmos, eat some fresh food (I'm so tired of restaurant food), and nurse my aches and pains.
Today I'll go in and bid adieu to the irascible Port Captain of Zihuatanejo, and start working my way up the coast tomorrow. It will be good to get the sails up again and get away from the noise and chaos of populated cities. Back to the sea.