125 km swum later, return to La Paz 22. November 2010

Dear friends,

The last 6 days were heavenly, away from society, lies and false promises, and I got to swim all around the ethereal and beautiful Isla Espiritu Santo and part of the coast towards Cabo San Lucas.

The fisherman Mario Winkler refused to honor the contract we had laboriously worked out, and demanded more money at the last minute. I had waited for 4 days for him to be available, and once again, I found myself lied to and having wasted my time when every day means falling temperatures on land and in the sea.

In the end, I used the same company I used last year, Punta Baja, at 50$ more per day than last year when I was charged 100$ per day, an excellent price.  However, I really had no choice but to go ahead with this, and I at least knew the company to be reliable. In fact, the owner Martin Flores has invited me to be their house guest, something I really appreciate.

I had the good fortune to be accompanied by a wonderful volunteer, Flavio Lau, who cooked for me, loaded the boat and unloaded the boat, and took care of all the other myriad details while on route. Thank you, Flavio  – it was really heartening to have you along, always with a smile, willing to get up at 5 am every single day for 6 days, and all of this with such generosity of spirit. It was a pleasure working with you.

Unfortunately, I am back to the drawing board once again – tomorrow I will go to the governor of the state, accompanied by a museum employee who has worked there in the past. Lets hope this will help…

As always, the greatest danger to me while swimming are the countless jellyfish – they just love every inch of exposed flesh. Flavio lent me his neoprene, the water is getting quite cold  and I was actually slightly hypothermic before I started using his wetsuit. This was an enormously generous gesture – it is such personal gear.

The ephemeral beauty of the sea around the island touched my heart  – but even there, half of the coral I saw last year is dead, due to invasive algae and, I assume, global warming of the ocean, and chemical contamination. This island is protected, but what is really needed is protection of the entire Golf of California, the whole sea of Cortes.

While camping, I saw the most fantastic comet streaking the sky, speeding along the horizon and leaving a huge tail of light in its wake. it was an incredible sight – who knows what it really was?

I took it as a personal gift of the sky, a miraculous sign of hope and brilliant light.

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