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Well, at or above the posted speed limits, but certainly not when conditions warrant a bit of “reasonable and prudent” behavior.

As usual, the cat food dishes were filled, yada-yada-yada, and we hit the road to Puerto Penasco on a Saturday afternoon. Before we got to Sells, Pam asked me if I’d remembered to pack some coffee.

“No, darn it, I forgot. We’ll just pick up some at the Super Ley in Rocky Point.”

Pam replied, “Karin and I were looking for coffee there one time, and couldn’t find any. Let’s stop at the Basha’s in Sells.” Okie doke.

I turned off the main drag where the sign says “Business District and Government Offices”, and started looking. Nope, no supermarket so far. A right turn leads us past a couple of small businesses and a school zone, and, wow, there’s a tank parked in the veteran’s graveyard next door. You know, the kind of tank that rolls across battlefields.




Another right turn heads us back towards Arizona 86, and Pam yells, “Slow down, I think it’s around here!”

Sometimes, she’s nothing if not strident. You should hear her swearing like a sailor. Or not.

But, she was right, and I overshot the entrance, because nothing I saw in that parking lot looked anything like a Basha’s supermarket to me. No big deal, just go a little further and turn around.

A few minutes later we were back on the road. A quick rest stop for the dogs in Why,


…and it’s technically the final leg of the drive.
A few miles down the road from Why, we roll slowly through a border patrol checkpoint, and then I’m back up to speed. The road has some curves and hills, and what to my wondering eyes should appear, but a sheriff’s department vehicle, U-turning in my mirror.

“Uh, oh”, I let out, and then just pulled over to the roadside. He pulls up behind me, turning on his light bar.
I forget what Pam said at that moment. Probably something like “I told you so”.

“You okay?” asks the deputy.
“Yeah, we’re fine. But when I saw you turn around, I figured you caught me speeding.”

He kind of smiles, and then says, “You’re not supposed to park here, you know.”

I did not know that.

“Just drive carefully, okay?” You bet, officer, you bet. He even turned down one of Pam’s cookies.

This little episode was only a small part of how this post’s title came to be.

Onward to the boat!

After the border crossing and past the town of Sonoyta, the road leading to Rocky Point is marked around 90 kilometers per hour, with signs saying “respete los límites de velocidad”, something not lost on me. Being a skydiver, terminal velocity is pretty normal.
Plus, you’d be hard-pressed to find a single Arizonan driving this road keeping to the “limits of velocity” posted along the shoulder. I usually do about 120-130 kilometers per hour.

Faster than most, slower than some.

Arriving at Safe Marina around 1645, we splash the boat, load her up, and head on over to my usual slip at Marina Fonatur. Ziggy immediately began her shift, keeping the pelicans and other sea birds off the docks. She gets lots of exercise this way.


That’s Eduardo, power-washing the poop away. I think Ziggy could save them a lot of water. I don’t know why that plastic owl’s even there, as the birds don’t respete los límites de defecation whatsoever.

The dive boat’s coming along.


That evening, we whomped up a mess of fresh shrimp tacos, with onion, red pepper, garlic and smoked paprika. Nummy.

Day 2-

Same old, same old. Light winds are evident, a leisurely breakfast on the docks, and we hit the high seas about 1100 hours. Only the seas aren’t high at all, and dwindled to nothingness after about 3 hours. Should’ve gotten out earlier.


It wasn’t looking like anything was going to change, wind-wise, so we motored back into the marina, wondering what to do with the remains of the day. We had been invited on a sunset cruise aboard Tempo, but that didn’t pan out, so…

Let’s hit the beach!

Strangely, the usual parking place next to The Reef restaurant was cerrado, except for a 20-foot wide alley. Security for the heavy equipment being used to build the new cruise ship pier had taken away a great access point.
So I drove down the alley anyway, and parked at the end.

We all got in a brief swim, with Ziggy being the most adventurous. I haven’t swum in salt water in ages.


On the way back to the vehicle, Koki decided to take a little detour under a wall, wandering into the heavy equipment yard, with Ziggy not far behind. Calling out to them only had an effect on Ziggy, and she scooted back under the wall. Good dog.
Koki’s another story however, and I figured I’d go under some fencing to retrieve her. Pam thought differently, saying she’d be the one to go under the fence.

Okay by me.

Definitely not okay with the two security guards a few hundred yards away, and if two can be called a swarm, they swarmed into action!

Authority figures don’t particularly enjoy their authority being undermined. We tried to communicate that our perro had gone missing in the yard, but they would have nothing of that, especially from a couple of gringos. I held the fence up so Pam could escape their wrath.

Hmm, a stray dog in Mexico. Nothing new here. Thwarted, and kind of illegally parked, we jumped into the truck and drove around to the other side of the yard, into the Reef’s parking lot.
Nope, Koki’s not visible from this side, either. Could she have meandered back out to our illegal parking area?

Well, let’s check inside the restaurant, anyway.

The maitre d’ was instantly understanding. “Looks like a wolf?” he asked. Could be. We walked out onto the patio, and sure enough, there she was, begging for handouts from the diners. Apparently, she’d just walked right through the front door, through the empty main dining room, and out onto the patio.

She’s become an old master, or mistress, of the “forgiveness versus permission” maxim.

We, as her supposed authority figures, breathed a sigh of relief.


On the way back into town, we stopped off at a random taco joint and ate 9 really good pork tacos. It seems difficult to find so-so food around here.

There was a carnival going on, complete with thrill rides, neon lights and cotton candy. “Wanna check it out?” “Sure, why not?”

Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me, as it would’ve made for some colorful shots. Pam must have still had confidence in the ginger she’d taken earlier that day to combat seasickness, and she agreed to take a ride with me on the “Kamikaze”.
Strapped in and locked down, the carny threw the switch, and Kamikaze started slowly swinging, fore and aft. Yeehaw.

Higher and higher, faster and faster, and soon, the contents of my pockets emptied themselves out into the cabin! There’s my pocket knife, pinned briefly to the mesh in front of my face!
I reached out and grabbed it, ignoring the Bic lighter and pocket change dancing around in free fall.
I like that knife.

As the action wound down, I spotted my lighter under the ride, with a few other sundry items. Upon exiting, Pam snagged it up, under the slightly angry eyes of the carny. I suppose the booty lost by the carnival’s patrons supplements his income, and we were technically “stealing” from him!

But he still got my lip balm. 🙂

Day 3-

It started out just like yesterday, so I pushed up our putting out. The forecast was for winds of 8-10 kilometers per hour, not a whole lot, but superb for my spinnaker. The only little problem was pointing deeply enough into such light breezes, and I found it difficult to get more than about 5 nautical miles upwind of port. The faster my little boat goes, the more apparent wind I see, erasing a lot of upwind performance.



I was hoping to get another epic spinnaker run in, but twilight was closing in on us, so I took what I could get.
As I turned downwind and furled the big 150% genoa to set up the spinnaker, Pam enjoyed a little swim, and we trailed a line for her to grab onto if needed.
After untangling the mess I pulled out of the bag, I finally got the sail filled.


By the time we got close enough to port to douse sails, we noticed the party boat Intrepid just outside of the harbor entrance, flashbulbs a-poppin’. Some wildlife?
Yes! It was a small pod of dolphins, finally!


Hard to get a good photo with the delay on that camera’s shutter, but Pam got a couple.

Another plus for Pam was that she was able to negotiate the outboard motor from its sailing position to operational, with just a bit of coaching. After a few more times, I think she’ll be more self-sufficient, just in case I’m incapacitated.

One of the best days of sailing I’ve ever had.

That evening, dinner at the Blue Marlin.

Day 4-

Okay, we need to get back to Tucson in time to watch Jeopardy, and we’re tight on time. Breakfast, haul out, button up, pack up and go.

An awesome tailwind didn’t hurt at all, but when we got into Sonoyta, a local cop spotted me. I wasn’t going any faster than the flow of traffic, about 60 KPH in a 40 KPH zone, but hey, he still saw fit to pull me over. I don’t mind, I like cops.

“Do you speak Spanish?” was his first question.

“Poquito.” I said.

“May I see your license, please?”

“Sure.” His buddy was checking out the contents of the bed of the truck.

“You were speeding, you know?”

“Yes, but no faster than the flow of traffic, sir.”

“There are schoolchildren.”

No there weren’t, I thought, but said, “Ah, ninos, si.”

“You must go to the police department and pay a fine, okay?”

“Okay” I replied. He then stepped away from the window to confer with his buddy.

Returning to the window, “The fine will be 1000 pesos at the department, okay?”

“Okay”, I agreed, doing a little math in my head. About 80 dollars. He then stepped away to speak with “buddy” again.

And then he came back again: “If you pay 40 dollars right here, you can go.”

“No, I’ll go to the department, no problem.” I knew what was going on, now.
La Mordita, “The Bite”.

Okay, I like most cops.

This exact same situation had happened to Pat Schulte of Bumfuzzle fame.
Or infamy, however you might care to look at it.

No matter how low his “offer” went, I still insisted I would follow him to his headquarters to pay the full amount.
Finally, he gave up, smiling.

I smiled back, shook his hand and said “I’ll see you soon”.

Maybe I should have slipped him a few dollars for comida y cervesa, but that slipped my mind at the moment. He certainly didn’t look undernourished.

I blame him for missing Final Jeopardy.



  1. Reblogged this on Southsea Blog.

    • Thanks, sailor! I’ve never been reblogged before!

2 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. By 24 Hours in Mexico | tom's space on 30 Oct 2015 at 12:44 pm

    […] of you may remember a post I’d made awhile back, admitting to a need for speed. In that post, I described an encounter with one of Sonoyta’s […]

  2. By San Carlos, Mexico | tom's space on 12 Feb 2017 at 6:02 pm

    […] about our needing to pay 4,400+ pesos at their headquarters, about $220.00, and memories of the interaction we’d had with Sonoyta’s Finest almost three years ago came flooding back. “We’ll pay the full amount at the department […]

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