Hurricane Wilma

Hurricane Wilma – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Let me poo poo the Commie conjecture of global warming.

George Bush and I agree that it is simply coincidence that last year was the warmest worldwide on record. It was a fluke that it was the worst hurricane season on record.

The folks who lived through it in the Yucatan are harder to convince.

tattered Mexican flag

This is the second largest flag in the world, still tattered from Wilma. As is the Mexican Caribbean coastline.

Victor was on Isla Mujares when Wilma hit October 2005. He was guiding 40 Scandinavian girls on a bike tour when the evacuation call came.

It was end-of-the-world stuff, he told. Palm trees designed to sheer in high winds were ripped out of the ground by the roots — spinning off like a child´s toy.

Officially Wilma bypassed Isla Mujeres!

The hurricane’s eye first passed over the island of Cozumel, and then made official landfall near Playa del Carmen with winds near 140 mph.

Wilma was the most intense Atlantic hurricane ever measured (based on central pressure) and one of the worst 10 of all time based on any criteria.

Lets hope the gorgeous white sand beaches can all be restored.

travelogue – Island of Women

From Cancun a half hour ferry delivers you to Isla Mujeres — the Island of Women.

Friends had raved about a beach paradise there. But that was decades ago. I was sure it was long since ruined.

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I was surprised how laid back was my reception. Not a single taxi driver or hotel tout approached me on arrival.

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I went directly to Pac Na, billed as the Club Med of Mexican hostels. This is their ocean front beach volleyball bar.

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Tents are pitched in quiet sandy courtyards.

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I wedged my Hubba under a coconut palm.

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The best of many good coffee shops was just down the street.

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Hurricane Wilma did a fair bit of damage to the island. Here the sea wall is being reinforced in advance of the next big blow.

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The main draw of Isla Mujeres for me was snorkeling.

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This was the best snorkelling area from town. About 2 blocks walk from the hostel.

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Under the docks fish congregate, protected from diving sea birds.

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The water was superb even in February. Warm and crystal clear. No wetsuit needed, I thought, though many did wear one.

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Graveyard.

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I had not seen this particular angel pose before.

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Many are disappointed by the modest main plaza. And the remarkably simple cathedral.

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I quite liked the plaza. Colourful, clean, simple. I ate tacos there in the evening from street venders.

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Look at the pipes on that playground trestle.

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The Hemmingway bar is a classic. He was not there when I popped in.

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I booked a bike tour through the hostel. Excellent and inexpensive.

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The highlight was the sea turtle farm.

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Eggs are protected, harvested, hatched and the turtles are kept here until almost 3-years-old. When they are released they then stand an excellent chance of survival.

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We marvelled at the lovely starburst shell patterns.

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The bike tour finished with a sunset visit to the far south point of the island. A sculpture garden is installed there.

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A nice setting, I thought.

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This is the furthest east point of land in Mexico. It sees the sun first.

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We walked down to reach the very edge of Mexico.

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Kyle Shewfelt to defend at Commonwealth Games

kyleNothing is more tempting than “retiring” after winning the Olympic Games. Retiring undefeated.

But 18-months after his victory in Athens, Kyle is preparing to defend his Commonwealth Games titles on Floor and Vault. He won 4-years-ago and will be the favourite again this time.

For Canadians the Commonwealth Games are the FUN Olympics.

Go Kyle!

Kyle Shewfelt’s official website.

McCharles family in Mazatlan

The day before departing for Mexico, Rob announced he was leaving his job of 20-years. For one thing, he & partner Yvonne want more flexibility in vacationing.

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Randy’s condo vista at the Inn at Mazatlan. He hosted us for the week there.

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I love the west facing view.

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This 2-week holiday was a rare chance for the whole McCharles nuclear family to get together. Randy (left) does not have much free holiday time.

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Dad is no sunbather. But he loves the fishing in Mexico.

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Boarding for the excellent “jungle tour”.

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Our most memorable restaurant was the Canadian managed “Casa Country”.

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Mom checking the unique ponds at Costa Bonita.

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Dad’s coffee station. I worked on that Kaluha bottle for 2 weeks.

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Twice we went out for ribs. Very good in Maz.

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A rare sighting of Eric McCharles in a swimming pool. (The chemicals tend to irritate his skin.)

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Mom loves to walk. The long beaches here are perfect for her.

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I’ve always loved walking south down the coast towards the city centre.

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Yvonne too walks a lot. She delivers the mail.

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Loading up in a “pulmonia” taxi, a VW Beetle rigged like a golf cart.

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fishing out of Mazatlan

6:20 AM departure Mazatlan marina.

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The boats were busy as trips from the previous 2 days had been cancelled due to high wind.

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Sunrise from the boat.

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Dad had taken many Mexican fishing trips in the past & was looking forward to another one.

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The anchor is welded rebar, quite flexible just-in-case it gets snagged.

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The highlight of the trip for me was an unexpected acrobatic show by California Grey whales!

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El Capitano. 18 years piloting these waters.

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We were bottom fishing. Light rods, 2 hooks baited with shrimp.

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Yvonne caught the first fish and the biggest Grouper.

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The water was choppy on the 90 minute ride out. I felt slightly seasick all day.

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We had 6 Canadians with rods in the water. Cost about US$50 / person. (Boat is US$250 plus tip for a 7hr day.)

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We were out with the Escuelo fleet, recommended by gingo locals.

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It was difficult to “feel” a hit with 200ft of line out.

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Bottom fishing you catch many small fish but have no chance at big Dorado or Marlin.

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	FisheRob.
FisheRob.

With our haul in the cooler & much smoother seas, the trip in was relaxing.

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Giant iguana guarding the harbour.

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Disclaimer: Rick did NOT catch this fish.

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Skipper cleaning our red snapper.

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Larry from Alberta let us keep his fish.

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Dinner for 4. Yvonne’s grouper & 3 snapper. We gave the rest away.

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