Sunday, May 13, 2012

Departure Day 2012

My departure for the summer months from Loreto Bay seems to have “snuck” up on me this year – I had been planning on leaving before the end of May but when I recently sat down and started counting backwards from several fixed dates that I had to be in certain places by, I came to the rather surprising conclusion that “D (for Departure) Day” was going to be this coming Tuesday. 

In past years I have posted several Blogs about parts of my drive north to Canada, but my trip north this year is the beginning of a new adventure in lifestyle – when I leave Mexico this time I am travelling diagonally across almost the whole US to Ohio when I am picking up a new 32 foot travel trailer.  Then I will return west across the northern states to Montana where I will enter Canada in Alberta and return to Calgary with what I am calling my new “Summer Home”. 

While I have had considerable experience living the RV lifestyle, (for about 5 years before I retired from my marketing business, I travelled about 1/3 of the year in a 36 foot Motorhome mixing mainly business with some pleasure travel) I have not pulled a trailer this size before, so it will an exciting new experience. 

Starting this year, when I leave here for the summer months I will spend them living and travelling in my trailer and then, when it is time to return to Loreto in the Fall, I will store my “home away from home” just north of the border crossing at Tecate for the winter, where it will be awaiting me, ready for my next summer vacation.     

However, since this trip will take me the better part of two weeks and cover almost 8,000 km, I do not think I will be posting a “return trip” Blog this year and I expect that this will be the last post of this, the fourth season of Living Loreto. 

I will confess that I write that last sentence with some degree of relief!  While I understand and appreciate the many benefits I receive from writing this Blog (including a better appreciation of the many aspects of living here that I enjoy, and enjoy writing about) after another season of writing over 30 posts I admit that I am looking forward to not having to come up with a Blog topic every week, although I have found the actual writing process has become somewhat easier with practice.

I will also take this opportunity to thank YOU for reading this Blog, whether you are a regular weekly visitor, or an occasional “binge reader” who only checks in from time to time, but reads back through the archives to catch up on the postings since their last visit.  In fact, I take considerable pride in the fact that my readership has grown steadily over the four seasons I have been writing “Living Loreto” and I am grateful for all of the over 75,000 hits that the Blog has accumulated during that time.

As I am preparing to leave here for the summer months - trying to remember what seems like a thousand details around closing up my house and what I need to take with me (usually too much) - I am struck by the changes at this time of year in my community.  While there are still some people arriving for a visit, or others who are here year-round returning from a trip north, the main direction of travel at this time of year is north.  The numbers of people in the ”Village” are dropping from week to week and, as usual, the exodus accelerates the later into the season, and the warmer it gets –we’re hitting 90 most days now and while it is still comfortable, the humidity is increasing.

Having said that, each year there are more “hardy souls” who choose to live here year-round, in addition to the core group of ex-pats who run businesses here – not to mention, of course the resident Mexicans, for whom this has been home forever.  As I have been saying good bye to people this past week, there is a sort of melancholy atmosphere, particularly among those who are staying for the summer, in part because so much of the attraction to this place comes from the sense of community we share with others who live here.

I also look back at this past year as the most significant so far in Loreto Bay’s almost ten year history.  While, as I have mentioned before, limited air service and half the number of available seats compared to last winter has had an impact, particularly among the short term visitors. Otherwise there have been a number of major accomplishments here in Loreto Bay over this past winter.  In no particular order, the first Food & Wine Festival added to the growing list of signature events like the Paella Competition that keeps our social calendars full, and the addition of the many new stores and services that have opened on the Paseo this winter have made big contributions to our lifestyle and sense of community here. 

Another important development has been the addition of several new restaurants which have given us convenient options without having to drive the highway after an “enjoyable” evening out.  No doubt I could add many more highlights to that list, but all you need do is look back through the archives at the top of the page and find my detailed stories from the past year about those and many others.        

So it is with mixed emotions that I leave my home and community for another summer, sorry to be leaving some of the closest friends I have ever had, excited about new adventures ahead as I embark on the next chapter of my life as a “Trailer Park Boy”, and looking forward to what next season will bring, as we as a community continue to build on the many positives from this past season.  Mixed emotions and constant change, these are just two of the many things that shape the experience of “Living Loreto”.
I would like to express my sincere appreciation for the overwhelming response I have received following my recent post “In Memoriam” about my Mother Alison.  From both friends and readers whom I have never met or heard from before – I have been touched by the many kind and thoughtful messages I have received and it pleases me a great deal to know that my late Mother’s experiences touched so many of you, thank you all!