When we returned to La Cruz from our trip south, there were some changes. A dinghy dock fee of 20 Pesos per day had been implemented. A swimming
pond pool had been put in next the to Marina office. The town square that had been torn up on our departure was back together. And a large dusty parking lot along the waterfront had been graveled over and had a few metal structures installed in. Over the next few days trucks unloaded pieces and a stage and pavilions began to take shape. Word was there was going to to a reception for a tourism convention coming up. Before long four large white canopy structures were in place as well as a big mainstage, and at night we could see large spot lights be tested out. The day before the party I happened to wander by and watched some rehearsals of various dancing acts. It looked like it was going to be quite a party, but there were also some barricades going up, and word was this wasn’t an open party. The day of the party on the morning radio net there was an announcement by the marina that the dinghy dock would move for the day, as it was right next to where the party was going to occur.
We had heard word of a fireworks display, and figured we might be able to catch a bit of the show from the sidewalk around the marina so we headed in and went to the new dinghy dock. Of course, the gate as the top of the dock was locked with no one in sight to let us out. Since the show was on the other side of the marina anyway, we putted over to towards the normal dinghy dock where several large boats were tied up on the finger piers normally used for the dinghies. I had a flash of inspiration to go tie up behind a sailboat a few slips down that does charter sails, figuring it wouldn’t be going anywhere at night and had quite a bit of free dock space as it is a 40′ boat in a 60′ slip. Plus this would put us behind the barricades for the party if we could just walk off of the dock. What I didn’t realize is there were people on the charter sailboat. As I stopped the dingy trying to figure out what to do next, I had an easy solution. The people on the sailboat invited us to tie up behind them! Done and done, and I stopped to introduce myself and casually remind the owner I had chatted with him about his boat awhile back. The owner told us if we had any issues to drop his name and the boat name.
Armed with a good excuse for being on the dock, we headed up towards the party. We weren’t stopped walking off the dock, and ran into some cruiser friends who had their boat in the marina. We joked they might as well be at the party since with the noise it would be producing there is no way they would be sleeping tonight. As we chatted, we spotted another cruising couple heading towards the actual entrance to the party. Figuring they would be our test run, we watched them enter with out even being glanced at. It was our turn, and sure enough, we slipped right in. At this point glancing around I realized a bit of a mistake on my part. While Jenn had put on a dress and cleaned up a bit, I was in cruiser mode with cargo shorts, flip flops, a t-shirt and carrying a small backpack. Most of the guys at the party were in slacks and something dressier than a t-shirt. However, no one really seemed to be in charge of checking the badges most people were wearing, and we spotted more than a couple other cruisers. Then we got the best news of all. Free open bar. Not only that, servers wandered through the crowd for most of the night with trays of food, the best of which were lamb chops and a pepper filled with guacamole.
We hung around and chatted with other cruisers that had found their way in, and watched the entertainers dispersed throughout the crowd. Finally the stage show began, with hanging performers, followed by a rather eclectic range of dancers, musicians and just rather difficult to describe acts. The show ranged from traditional Mexican music, dance and costumes to brightly colored unique costumes to some outfits. In a weird way, with the warm night air, changing colored lights on the white pavilion covers, loud music and the costumes it was a bit reminiscent of Burning Man. Minus the dust storms. Finally the fireworks arrived, and then a DJ cranked up as the crowd began to diminish while some remaining people found places to dance.
Some pictures of the traditional parts of the show:
And some less traditional outfits:
With the party winding down, we headed back to the boat after an entertaining night with no impact on our cruiser budget, the best kind of night out.