Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Puppy Pajama Party

Before heading home to Cuenca, we ventured up the coast to Montanita to stay with some friends of ours for a couple of days. They have a puppy too and Coco and Fredi are the best of pals. They invited us into their lovely home (Brian calls it Happy Acres) and showed us around Montanita & the surrounding area. Unfortunately, they too felt compelled to stuff us full of food so Shelley's plan to get rid of a couple of pounds while away from the fridge didn't work.

Montanita is like a movie set. There's a central area in town that's full of thatched roof buildings & surf shops. Bikini babes & six pack abs waltz down the street advertising carefree youth. Our hosts tried hard to get us to understand that come the weekend like Salinas, the population doubles and doubles again. But whereas Salinas is a "family" resort, Montanita is all about youth!

Vancouver, though on the ocean, has no surf because Vancouver Island is in the way. Salinas has no surf because it's in a cove. However, Montanita is famous in the surfing set & they are drawn to the place in droves. The surfing culture pervades the small town.

On our of our drives around the area we were shown a Catholic school designed to look like Noah's Arc perched on top of an incredibly high sandstone cliff that is slowly being eroded away by the relentless energy of the wind & waves. Already parts of the building itself have fallen off and the whole thing looks like it could slide into the sea at any moment. Brian has discovered that he has a new found fear of hights and refused to get out of the car to look over the cliff down to the ocean. Shelley refrained from calling him a scardy cat.

Back in our host's home (truly a small piece of paradise) they pointed out their resident iguanas & their parrot Louise. Coco & Fredi played 'till they dropped & ocean surf accompanied every minute of the day.

Brian had never been swimming in the ocean where there was surf and so was encouraged by all to try it out. Our friends brought out their brand new boogie board (still in the wrapper) and Brian good-naturedly posed for pictures. Shelley immediately christened him Moon Doggy! He trooped valiantly down to the ocean and even though intimidated by the huge curling waves, the intrepid 68 year old first time surfer tackled Mother Nature head on. He had a blast!

We were very impressed with how well our friends have integrated with the local very small-town community. They are wonderful good will ambasadors and every body in the area seems to recognize them and wave as they drive past.

Our last evening our friends whipped up a delectable Dutch Indonesian Curry Shrimp dish. It was a great way to wrap up a wonderful couple of days with our new good friends and put the perfect cap on our vacation at the Coast.

That evening we sat on their balcony, sipping wine, listening to the ocean and regaling each other with tales from past lives & future dreams.

We must mention that we saw the famous green flash (!) at sunset. This is not a common occurance and apparently seldom is it as vivid as the experience we had. Our friends said it was the strongest green flash that they have seen so far. For those not in the know, the green flash is a phenomenon that happens at sunset in warmer climes. It was a true thrill.

If you want to see more pictures of our trip to Montanita, check out our FaceBook pictures at:


  1. 1. What, no photos of Coco and Fredi?!
    2. Nice to hear Brian loves surfing now. Better late than never.
    3. A green flash! I am SOOOO jealous. I can't tell you how much time I've spent, camera in hand, waiting to see a green flash.

  2. There are photos of both Fredi & Coco in the slide show at the bottom of this blog. Sometimes it takes a minute of two for the slide show to load.

    Thanks for reading!

  3. Hope you enjoyed Montanita. great photo of the bird . congratulations