1/6/2013 – Sitting Still

True to form (as in “mañana doesn’t mean tomorrow, it means ‘not today'”), my new motor mount wasn’t ready when I walked over to the shop yesterday to pick it up.  Matter of fact, the shop wasn’t really even open.  On my second visit, a guy showed up to get some parts and tools but he said the guy doing my job was working somewhere else today.  No problem, I’m in no hurry.

Part of the reason we’re in no particular hurry is we got to figuring our calendar.  The only thing on our calendar that needs to be attended to in the next 2 months is the renewal of our permission to be in Mexico.  What used to be called an FM3 Visa is, under the new immigration rules, a “residente temporal”, and ours expire on February 22.  Renewal is no big deal as long as you’re somewhere that has an immigration (INM) office.  Here on the Sea of Cortez side of Baja, that would mean La Paz, Loreto, Santa Rosalía and maybe San Felipe.  Well, San Felipe is north of us and it would be pointless to go there.  Loreto would be a pain in the rear because we’d be anchored at Puerto Escondido, some 15 miles or so south of Loreto because there is no good protection to anchor at Loreto.  Since INM renewal often entails repeated trips to the office and there’s no good frequent bus service between Puerto Escondido and Loreto, this would be a royal PITA.  Going to La Paz would mean rushing through the Sea on our way south and, what with the wintertime weather and all, maybe not making our deadline.  So, guess what we’ve chosen to do.  If you said “sit tight in Santa Rosalía”, give yourself a big pat on the back.  We also found out that the monthly rate here at the marina is considerably cheaper than the daily rate: $100 pesos per day instead of $175.  We got here on December 27 so we’ll be eligible to pay at the monthly rate on Jan 27.  We can start our renewal process a month before our current FM3s expire, so that means January 22.  So we’ll be here until at least the 27th.  As soon as our new “Residente Temporal” (we’re actually going to try to get “Residente Permanente”) documents are ready, we’ll start watching for a good opportunity to scoot on out.  But, until then, here we sit.

Yesterday we decided we need to get out and do a little hiking.  From down in town you can see a cemetery way up on the hill.  Teresa from s/v Pochteca had recommended we check it out.  And so we did.

It’s a pretty good hike up to the top of the hill and we had to have a little bit of help finding our way.  Once you climb the road up the hill,  you have to find a street headed towards the cemetery.  This wasn’t all that easy as none of the streets were running straight.  One street that looked promising sort of petered out in a walkway behind some houses.  We turned around so we wouldn’t be trespassing but a guy sitting in the backyard of one of the houses assured us it was okay to proceed.  We walked a little ways, (maybe 1/2 block) but it looked like the path ended at a fenced yard with a big dog inside.  We turned around again.  As we passed our former helper, he again assured us the path was okay.  He turned around and pointed at a huge cross on a hill behind his house, asking if that’s where we wanted to go.  We indicated that it was and he proceeded to lead our way.  As it turned out, the path turned 90 degrees right at the fenced yard.  He led us further up the path until we emerged at a street. Then he pointed us the rest of the way.  We were very happy for his help.

We hiked the rest of the way up the hill towards the huge cross.  Once we got there, we had an absolutely spectacular view of Santa Rosalía laid out below.

Looking down onto the harbor.  Marina Santa Roslalía is on the left hand side.

Looking down onto the harbor. Marina Santa Roslalía is on the left hand side.

Looking south with Isla San Marcos in the distance.

Looking south with Isla San Marcos in the distance.

Looking north with the old copper mine in the background.

Looking north with the old copper mine in the background.

looking down onto the heart os Santa Rosalía.

looking down onto the heart os Santa Rosalía.

The cemetery itself was pretty interesting as well.  For one thing, it’s huge!  It climbs up the ridge we were standing on and then crosses over and continues on the next ridge over.  Most of the graves seem to be above-ground monuments but a little too small to actually house a full size coffin.  What we’ve finally decided (and this could be completely wrong) was that the ground, being so incredibly rocky, was very difficult to dig a grave in.  So (we guess), the graves were dug just deep enough to put a coffin in and then be able to put at least a thin layer of dirt/rock over.  Then, the rocks that were excavated, or, in later years, concrete structures, were put over the top of the graves, largely to keep critters out and the dead in, but also to mark the graves.  We found piles of rock that we at first thought were just rockpiles until we noticed how many there were and how more or less orderly they looked.

Rubble or graves?

Rubble or graves?

Once in awhile we’d find an indication that these piles of rubble really were graves.

Definitely a grave.

Definitely a grave.

No telling how old the unmarked graves are.  They might be the final resting places of mine workers from the late 1800s and early 1900s.  We found one readable marker.  It’s endurance probably due to the copper plate that the epitaph was written on:


Sevastian A. Romero
Born the 19th of January, 1918
Died the same day.

There were plenty of newer, fancier graves as well.

fancy graves


Some, but certainly not most, of these graves could be driven close to.  But the vast majority were far enough away from any sort of roadway that you have to marvel at how much material had to be brought in by hand to build these memorials.

And I just couldn’t resist this shot.  This is just so Mexican.  Never throw anything away until it is completely, and I mean completely used up.

What? It works just fine this way.

What? It works just fine this way.

Since we’ll be in Sta. Rosalía longer than originally planned, we’re hoping we’ll get a chance to visit the museum and a few more eateries.  We’ve only eaten out once so far.  Just too cold in the evenings to want to leave the womb of the boat.







About sryoder

Steve & Lulu... retired. Had enough of the cold wet dreary fall/winter/spring in the Pacific Northwest. Bought a boat, fixed it up, sold our home and sailed to Mexico in November, 2010. Been here ever since except for occasional forays to the States (summer only, thank you) to visit the kids, parents and siblings. If you're looking for a sailing blog, this is the wrong place. This is a traveling, hunkering in, eating blog. Sailing is just how we get from place to place when we can't walk.
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7 Responses to 1/6/2013 – Sitting Still

  1. Alan & Elizabeth says:

    You’ve really whetted my appetite for getting further up into the Sea this summer. Santa Rosalia is on my “must see list” for sure. We just got into La Cruz a couple of days ago, so it will be awhile before we head back north, but we hope to be crossing back from Topolobompo to Agua Verde mid to late February. Weather permitting, of course. Have I told you lately how much I look forward to reading your blog posts?
    Thanks for all the great info,

    • sryoder says:

      Thanks Alan. Nice to hear. We’ll probably see you somewhere between Santa Rosala and Agua Verde as we’ll be heading south about that time.


  2. John Dakins says:

    I would like to buy that chair……

  3. One has to wonder what a person does while sitting in that chair. That’s an amazing cemetery, I have to admit.

  4. F eye says:

    Hey…Isn’t it hard to visit a calender and try to work out a plan when “everyday is saturday”? Greetings to you both!

  5. Sandy Holeman says:

    Love the shot of the chair! Sounds like Mexicans are WAY ahead of us when it comes to Re-use, Re-cycle, etc. Pretty cool!

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