After greeting our new Italian landlord Sergio and his very wriggley and sweet doggie Dolce in their overgrown front yard, receiving a set of keys and being told we wouldn’t have hot water until November when it got cooler (hmmm…), we negotiated the steep outdoor spiral staircase to our 2nd floor apartment. There’s a little front porch, the view almost completely obstructed with plants and trees from the yard below, with a hammock and table and chairs. Once indoors, we were happily surprised to discover that the apartment is much bigger than expected, and quite nice! The rooms are big, there’s a living room with TV, a dining table with 6 chairs, and behind the small kitchen is a long room with a washing machine at the end and a couch and coffee table at the other end. The two large bedrooms each have AC with their own remotes.

Rob and I looked at each other and gave woops and high fives – we made it!!

This apartment is not inexpensive as you might think things would be in Mexico; the large number of expats here have driven up the price, and the proximity to the beach being another factor. After haggling about the rent while still in Colorado, I managed to get it down to $33,000 MXN (pesos)/month. Even though the exchange rate on the internet says it’s 20:1 pesos:dollars, that’s not what you actually get due to banks (or whoever) taking a cut; it’s closer to 18 or 19 to 1 from banks, usually less from other businesses. Still, the rent is way less than you would pay in most towns in the US with beautiful beaches! And what an absolutely beautiful beach there is here…!!!

San Pancho storeAfter carrying a few loads of our stuff up the steep stairs in the hot and sweaty sun, Rob and I were ready for the ocean! The beach is a 10 minute walk down the main cobblestone street, past ittle shops and restaurants, lots of people and cars and bikes and dogs…and there it is… at the end of the sand those big waves rolling in on a long, beautiful stretch of beach, with dogs running everywhere, surfers out in the water awaiting the big waves, people walking or lounging on beach chairs, and restaurants serving people at tables with colorful awnings a ways out onto the sand. I had my sandals off in a flash and was walking along the edge of the waves, my very favorite thing to do. A wave washes over your bare feet and retreats, leaving glistening sand in its wake; the next wave doesn’t quite reach you so you boldly walk closer to the water, only to be almost knocked over by the next wave that splashes up over your shorts and leaves you dripping and laughing. This will be my daily meditation, my way to decompress after a long day… thank you…

Of course we had to walk over to the lagoon, or more accurately, estuary, that’s on the other side of a strip of sand further down the beach, to see what birds might be there. Yep, as it was when we were here in May during a preliminary trip, a few white snowy and great egrets, a couple dark angingas sunning themselves far away on the opposite side of the water, a cormorant or two, and a couple  YCNHs or yellow crowned night herons (the counterpart to the black crowned night herons found more commonly in the US). This lagoon was one of the reasons we were happy Great Egret Mexico Surfer Mexicoto get an apartment in San Pancho… birds for us to photograph within walking distance!




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