I am gliding through the water. One arm over the other in rhythmic pace, like a windmill turning in the wind. I stop momentarily to check if I can touch the bottom, but I am still too deep. I crawl closer to shore. I check again. No. I keep moving closer to shore until finally, just a few feet from the pink and welcoming beach, I feel the sand beneath my toes. I stand up and a giant wave cascades over me, pummeling my back, pushing me into the sand. The wave crashes into the shore, curls back under itself and pulls back out to the ocean, dragging me with it.
I thrash and resist until I remember. Relax. Breathe. Go with the flow. Waves roll in. Waves roll out. Resistance is futile.
I become one with the ocean and stretch my body out on the water’s surface. The waves roll in and carry me back to shore.
I stand up and move away from the water’s edge. The sand is warm beneath my toes. The breeze warmer.
We are on a deserted stretch of beach miles down the coast from Villas Fa-Sol. Guillermo has offered up the services of his captain, Jorge, and the use of his 45′ powerboat, “Do It”, to take us out on the water for the day. After a leisurely journey hugging the beautifully rugged coastline, exploring several of the 9 bays that make up Huatulco, we are two miles out from shore, heading back to the northern tip of the region, when Ursula suggests it’s time to swim.
Ever accommodating, Guillermo and Jorge steer the boat towards this stretch of beach. Stefan, one of the guests who has joined us for the day’s adventure, reels in the empty fishing lines we have been trailing. Like an epilogue to a story about the one who got away, their colourful lures lie on the deck, empty, waiting for another chance to be cast into the waters.
At the farthest end of the cove, several divers bob along the water’s surface before disappearing below. There is a couple walking along the sand. They stop and kiss and keep walking in the sun. At the oppposite end of the cove towards which we are headed, a sailboat is anchored, its gleaming white hull gently rolling with each wave, its ropes and stanchions clanking, a cheerful bell calling us closer. Farther in from the shoreline, someone has erected a bright green tent, its sides untethered, the panels flapping soundlessly in the breeze that blows in from the water.
As I walk along the water’s edge, I see a family playing amongst the rocks that form the southerly edge of the bay. I know they are laughing, calling out to each other but the wind steals the sounds of their voices leaving me alone with just the crashing surf and my thoughts of paradise.
I spent much of the journey perched on the bench of the flying bridge, high above the boat’s main deck. Under Guillermo’s watchful eyes, I climbed up the two ladders to reach the bridge, my favourite place on a boat. I love the feel of being high above the waves, the wind blowing through my hair, the sound of the motors muffled far below.
As Guillermo shared stories of his adventures with his wife Rosio travelling the world, I watched the surface of the water for giant sea turtles, leaping fish and swooping birds. “Life gets busy and I get caught up in it,” he tells me. “Up here, I can forget the pressures and relax. It is like meditation.”
And I agree. The rhythm of the water, the boat rising and dipping with each wave, sometimes swaying side to side. The wind, the warm sun beating down, the birds swooping and miles and miles of sun-glistened sea reaching out into the far horizon. It is heavenly. Divine. Soul-refreshing.
We spent a day on the deep, blue sea yesterday. A day of magic and wonder. A day sharing in laughter, friendship, stories and tales of the one’s who got away, the one’s who got caught.
As we swam and lazed on the boat deck, Guillermo and Jorge prepared a delightful lunch of tuna salad, fresh avocados and juicy tomatoes. We sat and chatted and talked of worldly things and I listened and breathed deeply into the moment and gave a silent prayer of gratitude to the deep blue sea and the sky above.
And then the dishes were cleaned and stowed and we got underway, back towards the harbor.
As we docked Guillermo asked me if I’d had enough.
“No!” I replied. “Let’s keep going to Guatemala!”
He laughed and helped me ashore. I stopped and turned out towards the sea and said a silent ‘Thank You.’
The waves roll in. The waves roll out. Resistance is futile.
I cannot resist the lure of this land and its beautiful people. I breathe in and out and feel my soul stir deeply to the rhythm of the waves, the call of the wind and the music of this place called Mexico.