Tate and I left New Orleans in the blistering cold back in January. It was just 4 days after I quit my job, making me unemployed for a bit over 4 months now. In the short run seeing money go out and not come back in isn’t too stressful but when I take into account the whole trip, possibly 5 years of not working, not making money and not building on my skills it makes me take pause. I wanted to write about these feelings of fear of the future, fear of the unknown and the instability that cruising while not retired brings. About the need for hobbies and self enrichment such as me learning a new language. I had wanted to that is until I met Aussies Belinda and Ken aboard the Catamaran Free Spirit.

This very interesting and inspiring couple hail from Sydney and anchored right next to us not long after my last blog post. We quickly met and went out for pizza. Belinda was a Doctor and her husband Ken was a Zoologist back near Melbourne on the south coast of Australia. Retiring 6 years ago they grew, well, tired of only living on land and so bought Free Spirit in Grenada and have since traveled the Caribbean and parts of the US for the last 2 years.
Free Spirit

If we had left on our original timeline we wouldn’t have met them and the fun that ensued wouldn’t have happened. I suppose life works out like that sometimes. The folks from the lands down under must keep tabs on each other because shortly after Free Spirit arrived to Isla Mujeres so did their friends aboard Our Rose from New Zealand. We were invited for dinner aboard their beautiful 42 foot Catamaran that Kiwis Jennifer and Richard had custom built in South Africa.

Being ever so kind and adventurous the next day they invited us out to snorkel and dive with them at MUSA ~ the Underwater Museum about 5 miles away from our anchorage off the coast of Isla Mujeres. We were SO excited to finally get to dive the underwater statues we had heard so much about but didn’t have the means to easily get out there.
Catamaran Snorkel

We jumped into the bright blue warm waters of Mexico and took a look around. Half the crew dove with scuba gear and other half were free diving.
Our Rose in the Water

MUSA is a Non-Profit Organization based in Cancun Mรฉxico that is devoted to the Art of Conservation. The museum has a total of 500 sculptures with three different galleries submerged roughly 30 ft. It was started in 2009 and completed at the end of 2013. There are various different sculptures like this land mine and those Christmas Ornaments.
Land mine in water
Ornaments under water

I didn’t know at the time we were snorkeling but these statues are close to 30ft underwater. Regardless of the depth I just had to get down there and check them out. Looking back I may have free dived down to 25ft. I will admit at the end of this trip I was feeling a bit lightheaded…but no pain no gain. It took everything I had to get down there and stay long enough to video and take pictures. I have heard stories about free divers going to 60 feet and after being down 25 it didn’t seem that impossible, with much bigger fins of course.
Dani swimming through the ring

The people statues were a variety of shapes sizes and expressions.
People under the water

I think this was Buddha waiting on a phone call.
Budda and telephone
Dani 25 feet deep in the water

A WaterBug!
Dani by the car

Check out a short video I made. Sorry for the shakiness, it’s hard to video and dive!

Jennifer from Our Rose took one for the team and manned the dinghy with dive flag. It’s a good thing too because just shortly after lunch time A TON OF PEOPLE AND BOATS SHOWED UP.
Jennifer in dinghy on Our Rose
Crowds snorkeling

With the situation getting dangerous out of the water will all of the traffic we got back aboard and headed back to the anchorage, for a BBQ no less!
Steaks on the Catamaran

This awful looking stuff is called “Chorizo” and is the only sausage we can find in Isla Mujeres. I have never worked with such a difficult and greasy sausage. You need at least a roll of paper towel just to soak up the grease. We don’t buy it for that reason (paper towels are expensive;) but Richard took the vinegary stuff by the dribbly horns and it turned out great.
Chorizo on the grill

Our fantastic group of new friends!
Our Rose group
That’s Eddie from SV Kaz and Belinda on Free Spirit.
Belinda and Ed from Kaz

The icing on the cake of the day however was, well the homemade icing on a carrot cake baked by Jennifer on Our Rose for my birthday! Yep all of this just happened to transpire on my birthday May 5th…I’m 32! I guess it’s worth mentioning that Jennifer is or rather was a professional baker back in New Zealand. Sorry to Richard for his face shot!
Jennifer with a carrot cake

They really are crazy giving me cake AND a giant knife. That’s Rebecca and Michael, guests aboard Our Rose who happen to split their time between Miami and NEW ORLEANS. Yep, they have a house in Uptown. She’s an artist and decorator and he retired from the New York Ballet! I’m telling you it’s incredible the people you meet out here.
Dani with a knife

Z Germans! Ya, this is Ron aboard Ramone, yet another Catamaran anchored next to us and his father who just flew in to visit the day before. Great timing Pops!
Germans on Ramone

After we all got cleaned up from the water adventure we headed into town to Bahia Tortuga and their Cinco de Mayo festivities. When we arrived I realized that word of my birthday got around and almost every cruiser on the island came out to party with us. Around 25 people who live on boats drank, laughed and danced their asses off to the live band.

The best thing of all is that everyone we just met is headed south, like we are. I hope our paths cross again soon.

It was just an absolutely incredible day that made me forget the more serious topic I had planned for this post. Experiences like these calm my fears about the unknown and actually ignite an excitement for the unknown. This is the kind of thing that fueled our dreams back on land. I am now a year older, happy, healthy and in love with my husband Tate and our life. I can’t wait to see where we end up next!
Dani Bikini 32nd birthday

*Thank you all for your kind words in the last post. We are still awaiting news.