Friday, June 22, 2012


Huatulco, Oaxaca Mexico

Better late than never. I just happened upon this draft blog that I had started a couple of years ago when we were still on the Pacific side of Mexico! Yikes! I never actually wrote anything - just uploaded the photos and forgot about it. But I thought that it was really worth sharing because of the wonderful textiles we saw being handwoven there. And yes, I did buy some.

We were in the Huatulco Marina waiting for a weather window to cross the notorious gulf of Tehuatepec which was a 4night/5 day passage. This area of Mexico is very narrow and relatively flat so the winds from the Caribbean funnel through and intensify. Thus, a long, calm period of low winds is desired.

While we waited, we often visited the nearby town of Las Crucetas which was walking distance. Around the central plaza we spotted this woman hand-weaving a wool rug or blanket on a very rudimentary loom. This was set up as a demonstration for an attached retail store. As the Mexican government has invested in this area to accommodate tourists, there is a lot of activity and good restraurants.

We also explored some of the back roads (actually we were looking for a place to buy Jonesy some clip-on sunglasses) when we came across a small weaving enterprise. Here it was men who operated the the slightly more modern looms. The materials here were cottons. I purchased some colorful and textured placemats for our table plus a couple of pillow covers for the cockpit cushions.

Just the sight of all that fiberly goodness got me tingling! I could have just pulled up a stoll and sat and knit all day just soaking up the textile fumes.
A weaver making a tablecloth

Cones of cotton thread

There are a lot of very high-end resorts near here and I have to wonder how many folks ever set out on foot to explore beyond the central square or even their all-inclusive resorts? They certainly are missing a lot of the more interesting things that we see and I know that we have to be missing a lot too. Just yesterday on a long van ride (collectivo) to the port city of Porto Barrios I got to see fields of rubber trees in sizes from mature to nursery stock , trucks carrying the large bunches of palm oil dates to the processing plant, banana trucks headed to the port, and a pig market/selling gathering by the roadside.

Spotted Eagle Ray

The bays of Huatulco are full of marine life. Here are two photos taken in the Marina. The first is a small spotted eagle ray who was swimming by our boat. The second is a spotted trunk fish by the walkway. The water, although murky looking, was obviously clear enough to photograph these amazing creatures.

Spotted trunk fish
What I didn't get photos of were all the birds we spotted on some of our morning walks! Here's a list for the birders out there:
White-throated magpie jay
Orange-breasted bunting (blue!)
Pale-billed woodpecker
Yellow-winged Cacique
West Mexican Chachalaca
and many, many hummingbirds

As part of the landscaping of the marina (which was all still under construction at the time) there was a short papaya tree. Usually, the blooms and fruit are way up high in the tree, but as you can I could actually reach these hefty and future yummy fruits.
Papayas on the tree
Papaya flowers

That's it for now. We're still enjoying our summer camp session here at Mario's Marina. Life is good.

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