Sinking in - We'll Follow the Sun - CycleBlaze

February 3, 2019

Sinking in

Yesterday as we sat at the beach enjoying life, we wanted to get more comfortable, so instead of sitting on top of the sand, we used a little embankment and carved ourselves a couple of recliners in the sand.  There we sat and watched Cuban beach life and just enjoyed the moment.  This feels like the perfect analogy for what is becoming our own way of traveling.  We love cycling and we love cycling from town to town, exploring new areas.  But we also really love just sinking in when we find a location we are drawn to, staying long enough to know people’s names and understand a little of their way of life.  It feels like that here in El Fraile where we have made friends and have just so enjoyed participating in the very beautiful and tranquil way of life.

The morning began with another lovely breakfast in the open air that almost didn’t happen.  Danielle, who has been such a joy for us to know, has been our main translator and helper in all things related to our stay here, but today and tomorrow are her days off.  We went to the restaurant in the morning as we had yesterday to find a new girl working.  When we asked about breakfast, she said they didn’t open until 11 – oh no!  We said we had eaten breakfast yesterday and she was heading off to check when who should appear but our lovely Danielle!  She simply took over, asked what kind of eggs we wanted, etc. and we went off to sit at our table, all things being right with the world again.  It turns out that the other girl, Dunia, was sick today, so Danielle was working her shift – what a hard worker! The other girl, she explained, was new and didn’t understand all the ins and outs of casa guests.  No worries!  We enjoyed our food and were joined at the end by Ernie.  We had a little chat before gathering our lunch (we had ordered sandwiches to bring along to the beach today) and heading off.  The plan was pretty simple – get to the beach and go snorkelling until we couldn’t stand it any more, then enjoy doing nothing.  Sounds not bad, right?

It was a perfect morning as we set out and we were soon at our chosen spot.  We had seen the spear fisher bring many colourful fish from the water near here so figured it was a good place to try our luck.  We had purposefully brought no electronics or valuables with us today, having been warned by several people that it was not a good idea to leave things unattended, and to be honest, this would have been our practice anywhere while we were going to be in the water away from our things. One thing we had to do something with was the keys to both the bike locks and our room.  Jim didn’t want to bring them into the water, figuring if they fell off that would be the end of it, which would certainly have been the case.  We weren’t sure what to do, but finally decided to bury them in the sand just under the corner of Jim’s towel, thinking they would be out of sight but we would know where to dig.  

That accomplished we waded out into the slightly cool but perfectly clear water.  Once we had our goggles on and were submersed, the water felt just right.  It was still early, so we didn’t put on sunscreen, not wanting to pollute the waters here, but we both wore shirts as well to protect our backs, having had the unpleasant experience of sunburns from one of our other snorkel adventures.  We found many little fish (which of course I have no pics of) and just really enjoyed the altogether relaxing experience of floating along without a care in the world.  What a perfect way to be!!!

After a time, we came in for a snack and a rest.  The towels were laid out in the shade and we were a little chilly, so we pulled them forward into the sun.  Oops!  It didn’t occur to me that there was a problem until I looked over to see Jim digging in the sand.  Oh no!!!!!  We had done the exact thing that we had laughed about as we walked into the water – we had lost our keys in the sand!!!  We spend a few frantic moments digging, digging and then digging some more.  It felt like an episode of Survivor and we were the clueless idiots who couldn’t get it right!  At long last, Jim held up the precious keys and we were able to sit and laugh at ourselves.  What a sight we must have been to anyone observing those crazy North Americans!!!  

Ah well.  Crisis averted, we again relaxed into the sand and enjoyed watching the very few people on this perfect perfect beach come and go.  There was a family with children playing as well as a few other snorkels, so we had lots to watch.  Eventually we went back in for a second go, but this time I hadn’t properly prepared my goggles and they fogged up, so we turned back and headed back to our things, which hadn’t been touched by the way!  We ate our enormous sandwiches and then spent the rest of our beach time watching a net fisher who had shown up as well as another spear fisher.  The occasional boat went by on the horizon and that was pretty much the extent of our exciting morning on the beach – only marred by that one tiny little crisis.  

In the early afternoon we came back and decided to walk back out to the big rock we had been at on the first day.  It was pretty hot by then and we probably should have just stayed home, but I wanted some pics so off we went, thinking we would find a shady spot to sit.  Of course, once there we found no shade at all, so after sitting and watching the waves and taking a few pics, we headed back for a shower and siesta.  

That's our snorkelling beach over across the way
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Some seaweed of some sort
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Not sure about this
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A snail community!
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Sea urchin - hey, Annie, does this remind you of anything?
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Annie HeppThat book!
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6 months ago
Actually, it was a little bigger
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Oops! I wore him out!
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This evening we need to once again pack our gear (my least favourite thing to do) before meeting Cooper and Lies for dinner.  They were in Matanzas today and we are hoping they can give us some ideas of places to stay.  As I am writing this, we are enjoying the sunset up on the deck of our casa.  Boy oh boy, life is tough sometimes!!!

Today's ride: 6 km (4 miles)
Total: 1,421 km (882 miles)

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Steve Miller/GrampiesGlad you are enjoying your time lounging at the beach. That activity is our idea of utter hell. Dodie especially can handle maybe 30 seconds of beach time before she gets really grumpy and demands an activity. Oh well, to each his own.
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6 months ago