See Ya Later, Sayulita!

Trip Start Mar 11, 2011
Trip End Ongoing

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Where I stayed
Casa Duende Vista Sayulita
Read my review - 4/5 stars

Flag of Mexico  , Pacific Coast,
Friday, November 25, 2011

(Credit to Alana for the title ;)
Leaving Sayulita was hard. The decision to leave was the hardest. We knew it had to done. We had nestled ourselves into a comfort zone. It was home for 5 weeks. Everything was familiar. We even established some semblance of a routine. Imagine that! The Lees with a routine?!

It looked something like this...
Wake up around 7am. Growl at having been woken by the sound of metal against sand (construction going on just outside our window). Nod back off to sleep. Wake up again around 10am. Ease into the day. Procrastinate online. Brew fresh coffee. Watch an episode of the Good Wife or Community (we're up to date now). Blend fresh fruit and granola for breakfast smoothies. Try to spot whales from our window (we finally did on our last day!). Assess the size of the waves. Shower. Pack our day packs. Head down the cobblestoned hill on our daily mission to the beach. "Buenos Dias" to all the familiar faces along the way. Find Anne on her usual spot.
We have come to know many locals along the way. Effectively we became locals. Vendors know our faces... and our history of rejection!) So they simply greet us but have given up trying to sell to us. Best to focus your efforts on the tourists. Like Anne says: "Buenas suerte, amigo!" ;)

We knew what regular events happen in town like Salsa night at Don Pedro's on Mondays, Reggae night at Don Pato's on Wednesdays, flea markets on Fridays and Sundays (although we were seldom made it in time!). We knew exactly where to go for the best fish tacos. 

We were there since before peak season started. Long enough to see the beach take new shape. Long enough to notice the temperature drop and the ocean cool. Long enough to see holidaymakers come and go. Long enough to see an influx of vendors for the busy season. We even noticed when some vendors started cutting corners - using corn tortillas instead of flour, or putting less fish on their fish kebabs. Mmmmm, beach bbq-ed fish kebabs!

We saw (and annoyingly, heard!) loads of events take place in town - Halloween, Day of the Dead, the re-enactment of the Mexican Revolution, Voting rallies, Bahia Cultural festival, and some Land-owners' festival with mariachi bands. That's where Anne learned the Mexican jumping dance! The Lees made a feeble attempt. There were times we weren't even sure what we were celebrating but we'd know something was going on. Any excuse! We'd hear and see the fireworks from our window, hear cheering, live music and Radio Sayulita broadcasting live from the plaza.

Our last night in town was coincidentally on Thanksgiving day and the day of the Land-owner's festival. We headed to the live mariachi show with Anne and some other friends. That's where Anne learned the Mexican jumping dance! The Lees made a feeble attempt. We really need to learn these Latin dances asap!

Earlier that night Leo & Suzanne guided us to an unexplored part of town (to us, anyway), up a hill and far away. They'd found a perfect sunset spot alongside an abandoned house. The view was awesome! We could see Sayulita beach, Los Muertos, the river that runs through town and the expanse that is the jungle surrounding Sayulita. Hmmm I wonder how long we could squat there before getting evicted! The somewhat inebriated trek back through the jungle in total darkness was fun except perhaps dodging barking dobermans! Still not sure how close they were...

So yes, the highlight of our time in Sayulita (I'm sure you picked up the theme!) is making good friends and sharing lots of memorable times. We only met them about halfway through our stay in town but from then on we spent most of our time with Anne from Minnesota, and Leo & Suzanne from the mountains of Canada. It was sad saying goodbye but we had one last good night out, and will definitely try our best to see them again!
We also bid a fond farewell to Mario, aka Duende (our landlord) and his 4 chihuahuas (you may recall that one is the love child of the star of Beverley Hills Chihuahua). It was during our goodbyes in our bungalow that we spotted whales in the bay, spurting water. What a send-off! 

With our backpacks back on the backs of us backpackers, we were ready to hit the road again. Kindly one of Duende's workers dropped us at the main road with his quad bike, saving us the walk down and up the hill.

As we cruised through town we waved goodbye to the familiar faces along the way. My all-natural ice-cream amigo was touting his wares in the plaza. David was manning the internet cafe. He also works at a hotel on the northside and at Monchi's restaurant. Waiting for a bus or lift, we also saw Carlos and Leo drive by, doing their thang.

Sometimes you wanna go where everybody knows your name...

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