Today we went back to Balendra Beach, in hopes of kayaking to the places where supposedly one can snorkel. All this is hearsay, but we hoped. We wanted to get there nice and early, to beat the crowds for the kayaks, as well as to have a bit of time to kayak before low tide. We'd read that you can only get into much of the bay at high tide, which was at 10, so we needed to be out of that end of things by 11:30 or noon at the latest.
So Ken got me up at the crack of dawn, or as some people call it, 9 a.m., made me some scrambled eggs, and off we went. We got there nice and early. So nice and early, that this was the beach:
And the place to rent the boats:
Yeah. Turns out the guy with the key to unlock the facilities, such as they are, wasn't even going to be there until 11. Which, this being Mexico, could be anytime all day. So we gritted our teeth, and drug ourselves into the shelter of the rocks, as it was mighty windy.
Then, once he got there, we scurried over, got a kayak, and off we went. Being a rookie, I gave myself a doozy of a blister within 5 minutes, ripping it off within another two. Nice. And of course the Liquid Bandage was back at the house, right where it would do the most good. Luckily, there's always salt water. Ouch!
I still had a few shots left on the crappy underwater camera that needed to be used, so I took that along instead of the real camera. (See: rookie, above.) It was clear that snorkeling was going to be a no-go. Far too windy, and far too low a tide.
The shots taken from that camera will have to be developed the old-fashioned way: chiseled on stone tablets, for they are disposable cameras. This also means I am free to lie with impunity about all of the things we saw and did. Why, I petted my very own tropical heron, and I named him Kevin. Kevin will be coming home with us, flying alongside our plane. He will miss the tropics, but assures me he will be very happy at Marais de Limace in the frozen swamp below our house.
After returning from our foray into the mangroves, we rested again in the shelter out of the wind. We were only able to bring the kayak partway back in, because this was the mother of all low tides:
That's bare sand you see there, by golly, all the way out. The boats you can just see were the tide line when we got there.
So then I decided to take the good camera, and stalk the birds. They let you get remarkably close when you're slowly floating in a boat; surely they would let me walk among them and take close-ups? Not so much. Here's the best I could do; meet Kevin:
And an egret I stalked for far too long. I named her Emily, because there were some small egrets and I decided they were a family. Here's Emily by herself:
And with the fam. Or, rather, one of the kids and one of the neighbors down the way:
This looks like a pile of poo, but is not. It's those underwater (usually) critters that make these shapes. I call them sandworms; I suppose they have some sort of real name. You don't usually see these littered across the open sands; they are only underwater.
Here's a bunch of 'em:
Okay, fine. I was there too: (Clearly in the morning, just before we went out, because there is water in the bay.)
Here's Ken, on this ever-so-balmy day at the beach, dressed for the scorching temperatures:
And here's Kevin, getting a head start to meet us back north:
(Hey, point-and-shoot, ankle-deep in surprisingly cold water, swinging hand-held camera up to try to catch Kevin in flight. He declined to circle back for another shot.) Be sure to let us know when he arrives, okay? You'll recognize him; he'll be the only heron wearing a muffler.