Bahia de Kino is a great beach, a destination for many norte-americans. It’s close to the US border, easy traveling, and the weather is great all year.
Kino Viejo is old town Kino, a fishing village of many broken down houses and shacks, small mercados (grocery stores) and some emergency services like a medical/ambulance station, a fire hall and police.
Down the beach a few kilometres to the north, Kino Nuevo is where the gringo houses line the main road thru town. It lacks services other than Oxxo (like a 7-Eleven), some RV parks and a few small hotels. We are parked on the beach very near the 24-hour Oxxo where its lights keep things lit around the clock.
Over and over we say how happy we are to be back at the oceanside. Our toes wiggle in the sand. We don our swimsuits and head for the small waves. Everybody is in the water, refreshing our bodies after a month of nothing but sponge baths with baby wipes.
We unload the surfboards, the dory and the kayak in anticipating of playing in the water some more. Mexicans and Malcolm and Rick help us unload before they leave camp. Help comes easy usually when they don’t see a man around. Just the helpless lady and her bambinos!! Well, we take what’s offered and it makes work much easier for us. Yahoo, and Gracias!!
This is the Life!!
We decide to wrap a palapa with tarps, not for a toilet but for a kitchen. Somewhere we can place our table and camp stove and hope to avoid some sand and breezes.
Just after lunch we begin to wonder (not the first time) if we are the cause of that which is not “normal”. The winds pick up and blow for nearly 48 hours. Twenty-mile-an-hour winds.
This is NOT the Life. No longer. We are glad we set up the tarps and have a place to get out of the blowing sand.
We aren’t happy in paradise. We haven’t had enough time to enjoy paradise yet before it became hell.
The day is spent in our tarped palapa and worrying about our tents. The flies are on the tents but the sand goes up and over and in. There is no escaping the sand. Drifts of sand build around our tents as the winds direction changes through the day and night.
We tie my big tent to the dory so the tent won’t blow away. The teen girl’s tent lays flat to the ground with a broken pole and getting buried every hour by more sand. It’s reminding us of Snyder Hill before we left Tucson.
Before we climb into our sandboxes for the night we shake out our sleeping bags, blankets and pillows the best we can. We climb into bed and hide under our bedding to shield ourselves from the falling sand. Mitchell moves his tent inside the tarped palapa but the sand is still blowing in there, too.
11:30 pm comes and I hear Maret outside my tent, “Mom, are you reading?”
“Yes. What’s up?”
She asks for the van keys, but I don’t have them. I think Mitchell has both sets. She heads off to find her brother. I don’t hear anything else from her for hours. I figure she settled herself to sleep on a van bench.
I read until just before 1:30 am when my eyes can’t stand any more fine sand falling into them. It isn’t until then that I realize I’d be better to have my head on the other side of the tent, the side the wind was blowing from. Slow learning. So I sweep a clear landing spot and turn the 2 boys around in the tent, covering their heads with bedding again. Gaelyn is asleep on one side of me, but the wind is billowing the tent side in over top of her so she’s somewhat protected from the falling grains. I leave her be.
I attempt to sleep but it doesn’t arrive.
I hear Toveli calling “Can I have the keys?” I tell her I don’t have any, that Maret is sleeping in the van and Mitchell might have some keys yet in the palapa.
“I banged on the van window but she didn’t wake up. I think she might think I’m a Mexican banging.”
“Well, maybe try waking Mitchell up.”
She stands there outside my tent, not moving. I know she must be utterly frustrated, unable to sleep, finding sand in every nook and cranny and all in between. She is immobilized by anxiety and frustration so late in the night when she ought to be dreaming.
“Do you want to come and cuddle with Mommy?”
“Yes” she whimpers.
She climbs into my sandy bed between Laars and I. Three of us spooning! Frustrated, but together.
A few minutes later I hear some people walking past the tent and see a flashlight shining. It’s Mitchell and Maret, cheerily chattering away. I call to them.
They’ve been digging another Mexican couple out of the beach sand!
Mitchell had been unable to sleep so he went for a walk around camp in the darkness. He went to get his jacket out of the van when a man and his wife asked for his help. They phoned for friends to come help but they were still stuck. Maret went looking for her brother and found this nightshift job, and joined the crew. Eventually, after more friends arrived they had success.
That’s when I discovered them returning to camp.
Maret declared, “I’m not going to be able to sleep at all tonight!”
By the sounds of it, none of us were going to get any sleep any time soon so….I decided to get up and read aloud in the palapa while we shared some red wine. Yup, I offered it to the kids who merrily sipped away (Laars was the only who slept thru the ordeal) while I read at 2:30am on a beautiful beach in Mexico and the wind blasted sand against the tarps.
After just a few sips the kids started to head back to bed, and miraculously got to sleep quickly. A little wine does well like a medicine!! Glad we brought it, Everette. Thanks!
The winds blew through the whole next day, and on the following day we were told “These winds just aren’t normal!”
Yeah, we know.
It’s because we are here!