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LEMONS & LEMONADE

LEMONS & LEMONADE

Originally Published the Week of Jan. 14, 2023 in Western Outdoor Publications

No doubt, Mexico is a great place to escape to, especially in the winter.  This year, in particular, with all the storms criss-crossing the U.S. and repeatedly battering some areas, it’s a no-brainer.

The idea of shedding your thermals, rain gear or snow-boots and sticking your bare toes into warm sand with any icy cold one in your hand is awfully appealing.

There’s just one thing wrong with that visualization.

Folks think that nasty weather respects the political borders that separate the two countries.  No, the weather does not simply stop at the border.

If there’s weather north of the border, there’s weather south of the border as well.  Generally, it’s not as severe, but there can be enough weather to impact your vacation plans whether it’s that sunset booze cruise, a snorkel trip, and of course, fishing.

The sun is generally out so you can keep your toes in the sand.  And for sure  it’s going to be warmer than South Dakota and dryer than California or Oregon, but beware.

Waters can be rough and windy.  Or, at worst, your trip could get cancelled.  It definitely won’t look like the post card or website photos that enticed you to visit in the first place.

So, what recourse do you have?

Listen, common sense.

We know you REALLY want to get out on the water to do whatever it is you planned to do. 

There are unscrupulous operators and outfitters who know darned well they shouldn’t go out and  still take your money.  They will give you an abbreviated trip then apologize and go back to port.

Or, they’ll try to do the best they can and gut-it-out and everyone gets seasick and has a miserable time.

Or, simply cancels things and is honest and says it’s too windy and dangerous or the port has been closed.  And hopefully refunds everyone’s money.

Use common sense.  If it’s looks too rough, it’s really not worth it to get seasick and have a terrible time. Believe me. 

If you’re going fishing and the captain himself says you shouldn’t go out, don’t go out!  The guy wants your business more than anything. 

But, the guy know his waters and if an experienced waterman like him says not to go, no one is more disappointed than him.

The best thing to do in any of those situations, short of getting your money back, is staying flexible with your schedule.  Especially important during this time of year.

Check if there’s a different day you can go out and get a credit or rain check.  Most reputable operators will jump at the chance.  They want you to have a good time as much as you want to have a good time.

And they certainly need the business.

And no one wants to go out there if it’s unsafe.  That’s a given.  Don’t take that chance either. 

Whatever amount you paid, it’s not worth it to jeopardize anyone’s safety.  Even if you’re not getting a refund. Walk away.  

One other big thing…

We never travel without travel insurance.  We recommend all of our clients who come to fish with us in La Paz to purchase it as well.

You just never know.  And it’s very economical.

Believe me, if you get cancelled for some reason, refunds are generally non-existent.  Weather is part of being on the water.  No one’s fault.  It can’t be controlled.

But, even if you do get a refund, it might take time and some wrangling to get all or part of your dinero back.  Don’t count on it.  

Travel insurance can be a big help.

Whatever happens and you do get cancelled…

Go sit on the beach.  Console yourself that it still beats being on the freeway or back at work.

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________




Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International


Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico


U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942


Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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CAN YOUR CITY SAY THE SAME?

CAN YOUR CITY SAY THE SAME?

Originally Published the Week of Dec. 27, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

Tongue-in-cheek.  Are you safer on vacation than at home? 

Over the almost 30 years we have lived in Baja and run our Tailhunter Sportfishing operation, it’s not uncommon for us to get questions about safety.

Understandable. 

Mexico has that seemingly unshakable reputation of unmitigated lawlessness.  When you tell people you’re going to Mexico or you live in Mexico you here, “You’re going to…MEXICO?” “You live in MEXICO?”

(Their voices always go up on the world MEXICO!).

I might as well have said I like driving with my eyes closed or like swimming nekkid with pirhanas.

I won’t deny that there are some big issues, but it seems if a tourist has their watch stolen, it ends up on CNN. It’s an easy target.

And yes there’s violence.  But, what city these days doesn’t have issues with violence.  (Hello Chicago!)

We have friends in the U.S. terrified of visiting Mexico. 

But likewise, we have many Mexican friends afraid of visiting the U.S.  Can’t say I blame them.

This is because like U.S. media, Mexico TV broadcasts the robberies, mass shootings (is there ever a week this doesn’t happen in some mall, concert, school, etc), police issues, racial issues, riots, homelessness.

I wouldn’t want to visit either.

Every year for more than 3 decades, my wife and I do the fishing and hunting shows and expos all over the U.S.  A different show each week usually in some big convention center.

We’re there in our booth promoting our La Paz operation and thousands of people attend these events.

We usually do 10-14 shows over three months driving back and forth criss-crossing the U.S.

These have included shows in San Diego, Salt Lake City, Portland, Spokane, Boise, Phoenix, Denver, Bozeman, Seattle, Long Beach, Sacramento and many more.

There are some shows we will NOT be attending for the first time in many years simply because of the rampant crime we saw.  Some of it first-hand as we were victimized in one city and we saw a number of friends and fellow outfitters also victimized.

Openly.  In broad daylight.

We honestly saw more in 3 months on the road last year in the U.S. than we have seen in 30 years in Mexico.  And the police (many of whom are good friends told us) are largely powerless to stop it.

It was very sad and sobering.

So, you want to ask us how safe it is in Mexico. 

Well, I think there’s a reason it’s the #1 travel destination in the world right now.  Not just for Americans, but for international travelers as well.

Mexican destinations like Cabo, Puerto Vallarta, Cancun and others are breaking attendance records for visitors.  Cabo alone hosted more than 3 million visitors this past year shattering previous statistics.

And here’s some interesting stats that just came out…

In Baja, homicides have dropped 95% since 2018.

Car theft is down by 74%.  Burglaries have decreased by an impressive 63% while street crime such as pickpocketing, muggings and violent theft have dropped by 52%.

I wonder how many American cities or states can claim those statistics.

Authorities attribute the drop to increased presence of law enforcement including police and national guard/ army.  They also point to increased funding for such activities plus U.S. support in terms of better training.

Logistical improvements as well have increased.  They have added much street lighting and security cameras are more prevalent everywhere.  More are planned to add an extra measure of security, especially in tourist areas.

Common sense is still the best security no matter where you go.  Don’t forget your brain just because you’re on vacation.

Don’t leave your wallet accidentally on the bar top.

Don’t go walking down dark alleys or doing things you shouldn’t be doing.

Don’t go flashing your jewelry or cash wad out in the open.

Same as you would at home. 

All that aside,  don’t let it stop you from going on vacation and enjoying yourself in Mexico.

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________ 

Jonathan Roldan’s

Tailhunter International

Website: 

www.tailhunter-international.com

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter Sportfishing, P.O. Box 159, Hewitt TX 76643

Phones: 

from USA : 626-638-3383

from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBLvdHL_p4-OAu3HfiVzW0g

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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COKE…The Real Thing?

COKE…The Real Thing?

Originally Published the Week of Dec. 4, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

If you’re old enough to remember commercial about Coke being the “real thing,”  you’re like me.  You have some history!

Ask most folks what the most popular drink in Mexico is and some will say it’s tequila . Others will claim it’s beer.

It may surprise you to learn that Coke is the #1 beverage in Mexico.  The statistics are astounding.

According to the stats, Mexicans drink more than 700 cups of Coca-Cola a year!   Let that sink in for a moment.  That is 43 gallons of Coke per year.

Chiapas is Mexico’s poorest and southernmost state.  The average person in Chiapas knocks back over a ½ gallon of the Coke each day!  It’s an area where Coke is cheaper and easier to get than water.

I’m not sure how much Coke YOU drink, but that’s a lot of Coke by anyone’s standards. 

In fact, Mexico is the largest consumer of soft-drinks in the world. Coke being about 70% of that consumption. 

That 700 cups in Mexico is still way ahead of the #2 country. It’s the  United States with a still-crazy 400 cups of Coke every year per person.

Needless to say, Coke is a big part of the fabric of Mexican life, tradition and culture. Some would argue it’s an addiction.

It’s not only a refreshment but is even used in religious ceremonies and for medicinal purposes as well.  With some validity, it’s used to soothe or cure everything from headaches, indigestion and nerve disorders.

I mean, how many times have we all just “grabbed a Coke” and we seem to feel better?

But, it wasn’t always that way in Mexico, although it had been around for decades.

It really gained it’s popularity during the 60’s and 70’s.  Former Mexican Presidente Vincente Fox worked his way up the corporate ranks of Coke, but started as a delivery driver and salesman. He ended up as President of the company.

During his career, he shrewdly offered incentives to companies who sold Coke exclusively over Pepsi.

Then, during the 70’s, it really accelerated.  Those were the years that Mexico sponsored the Olympics in Mexico City as well as the World Cup.

Not surprisingly this co-incided with national ad campaigns that exposed the drink to so many Mexicans and brought it to prominence. 

Mexican President Luis Echeverria,  during those years, even tried to get the Coke recipe in order to nationalize the drink as the official drink of Mexico.  He was unsuccessful.  However, it underscored how integrated the drink had become to the nation.

When Vincente Fox left the presidency of Coca Cola and became President of Mexico in the early 2000’s, he sure wasn’t going to let the brand fall. 

It was his baby.  Lots of photos of him with an ice cold Coke in hand!

So, what’s the deal with Mexican Coke? 

Many folks swear by it over American Coke although many folks can’t tell the difference in flavor.

However, it’s growing popularity has many U.S. outlets and restaurants now offering Mexican Coke to their customers and patrons. 

While quite cheap to purchase in Mexico, it’s understandably more expensive in the U.S.  It has to be imported.  But that has not slowed the demand.

But, many Americans clamor for it. 

There is a difference.  

While American Coke is made with high-fructose corn syrup, Mexican Coke is made from cane sugar.  To many purists, they insist it has a cleaner and fresher flavor and zest. 

Some testify it that Mexican Coke doesn’t have the chemical taste of fructose Coke.  Supposedly it also has more snap and effervescence.

Others also insist that it makes a difference that Mexican coke comes in the traditional bottles.  And to many, glass containers make a critical difference.

However, other than taste, one wonders if Coke made with sugar is better for you than high-fructose Coke.  The medical field says it’s all the same.

Coke is Coke. 

Arguably, the same taste.  Same calories, sodium and other things probably not so good for us.

Alot of it could all be in your head and what advertising tells us.

Does an organic apple taste different than a regular apple?  To me, Chicago Pizza tastes as good as a New York pizza.  Expensive water bottled in the “mountains of Fiji” better than “smart water.” 

C’mon, Man!

It’s like the Emperor’s New Clothes. 

We all think Mexican Coke is better because everyone says it’s better. So when we lift that ice cold bottle to our lips…ahhhhh…dang, that’s good stuff!

But, there’s some hard sad facts about drinking Coke.  Even one can. 

Don’t get me wrong.  I love my Coke.  I don’t drink a ton of it, but it’s my non-alcohol drink of choice on many occasions.  Living in Mexico, an icy can from the cooler on the beach rocks.  Or while fishing.

And, I’m personally not picky about Mexican or American Coke.  The red can is the red can.

Seems pretty harmless. 

However, a single can of Coke has about 10 teaspoons or sugar in it (or it’s equivalent in fructose corn syrup) which does the same thing to your body.  It still gets processed the same way.

The World Health Organization recommends no more than 6 teaspoons per day.  So, even one can or bottle puts you way above dosage.

Not to mention the sodium and caffeine that’s also being consumed.

By the way, original Coke actually did have cocaine in it!  But that’s for another story.

Sodium, sugar, caffeine…All of these are attributable to higher blood pressure, obesity and diabetes. Or at least the lifestyle that goes along with it…

Those factors contributed a lot to fatalities during the pandemic.

Mexican Coke or American Coke.  It’s no wonder the two leading consumers of Coke in the world also have the highest obesity and diabetes issues.   

Buzz kill.  But, it is the “real thing.” 

I don’t have any beer in my frig.  But, I do have a 6-pack of Coke sitting in there.

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________ 

Jonathan Roldan’s

Tailhunter International

Website: 

www.tailhunter-international.com

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942

Phones: 

from USA : 626-638-3383

from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBLvdHL_p4-OAu3HfiVzW0g

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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COVID REBOUND

COVID REBOUND

Originally Published the Week of Nov. 22, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

Mexico tourism, like many places took a big hit in 2020 with the Covid Pandemic.  Baja, in particular took it right on the chin with a virtual lockdown that turned many areas like Cabo and other cities into ghostowns.

Some of it was external.  I mean, if you have no airline flights there’s not much you can do about it.  Likewise, if the U.S. government has closed the passport office, it’s outta your hands.

But, Mexico at ground level was trying to figure out how to handle it.  In many respects, they were late-to-the-game in dealing with it. 

Mexico is highly dependent on tourism. It needed to keep the general economy moving and people working. Therefore, it sat on it’s hands when the rest of the world was going into lockdown.

It didn’t help matters that Mexico’s own President was still running around visiting restaurants and kissing babies; or telling folks that “Mexico will not be affected by Covid because we have Mayan blood and only rich people are affected by the virus.”

Uh, yea, right. 

He also wore a special “amulet” that he claimed would ward off the virus. 

It wasn’t too long ago to forget some of the wacky attempts to curb the spread. 

That included sanitizing your feet and shoes before you could go into a building or shuttle van.  Or who could forget, spraying sanitizer from helicopters?

The stopping of all beer sales was a big winner.  So was having to walk through a fumigation tent to go into a market.  And only one family member in the store at a time.

At hotels, you could not have two occupied rooms next to each other.  One occupied.  The next one empty.  Then an occupied room.  Social distancing to the max!

Since we run a fishing operation, this one was near and dear.  At one point, they declared that you could not be on a boat with open-toed footwear.  No flip flops.  No sandals. To fish “safely” you had to wear closed-toed shoes.

…and the captain could only stay in the center of the boat.  And the boat had be regularly fumigated.  Even if it was a panga.

Those were just lovely days!

But, the point being, none of this was very conducive to welcoming tourism on any level even after things started to open up.

However, here we are.  Almost 3 years post-covid and about a year since masks more-or-less came down.

Tourism is booming. 

In fact, tourism in Mexico is breaking records. American tourists are up 35% over last year. 

But… not just with Americans.  It’s an international vacation destination as well.  Mexico is the number one tourism spot in the world right now.

cabo-san-lucas-hip-hop-boat-party-with-unlimited-drinks-1155902

In fact, for the upcoming holiday season, if you’re headed to Cabo, be prepared.  It might be hard to find beach space!

We run our own shuttle service for our clients who fish with us in La Paz.  The majority fly into Cabo  and we transport them north to our city.

I was there in Cabo Airport a week ago and the line of shuttle vans picking up and dropping folks off was incredible.  Vans and cars were triple parked with arriving and boarding tourists.

Statistics showed that this year visitors are thronging in greater numbers than ever before.

So much so, that they’re adding another 1500-2000 more hotel room construction in the next year. Airlines have added more flights to the tune of almost 2 million more available plane seats.

By this past spring 2020, almost 3 million visitors had already shown up in Cabo.  They expect by the end of the year, Cabo alone will have hosted some 7 million tourists.

medano-beach

During the Thanksgiving holidays, the expectation is for at least 30,000 visitors and more than 80% hotel occupancy. 

It’s a phenomenal number.  We think of all the big-name hotels brands like Hyatt, St. Regis and Four Seasons to name a few.

However, there are also all the little mom-and-pop operations as well.  The big ones have been booked for weeks or months even though statistics show that the average hotel room night is now $400!

Of course there’s plenty of smaller more economic places (like where I stay!).   But, the flood of tourists has now slowed down. 

Not surprisingly, Cabo has edged Cancun as the #1 Mexican vacation destination.

Just be prepared for crowds if you’re coming down in the next few weeks.  Give yourself extra time so you can enjoy your time!

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International

Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

Read Full Post »

YOU’RE NOT HERE TO FISH?

Definitely this is NOT a taco.

YOU’RE NOT HERE TO FISH?

Originally Published the Week of Nov. 15, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

Over the years, I’ve watched the complexion of the tourism industry and tourism in general evolve.  It has been an interesting observation.

Being in the tourist industry ourselves, we have a courtside seat to all the comings and goings.

Years ago, it was the fishermen.  No two ways about it. 

Fishing built the tourism industry.  It’s what initially opened up Baja and much of the Pacific Coast of Mexico.

It was the exotic frontier teeming with fish and popularized by those early adventurers and writers who elaborated about deserted hidden beaches; sunshine; waters teaming with boiling fish and a wonderful people.

At first, it wasn’t easy to get to.  But that only increased the allure.

But, as time went on, the tourism gates edged ajar enabling more visitors to make their way down the coast.  The gates have never closed.

It has never stopped being a wonderland to so many. 

At first, mostly the guys came down.  The journey could be long.  The visit often did not accommodate many conveniences like air-conditioning, ice, electricity, gasoline and soft beds or even running water. 

But, again with time, all of these came to pass along with swimming pools, spas, shopping centers, and all the modern accoutrements.

Not co-incidentally, tourism surged again.  Not surprisingly, the mix of families, wives, kids and others increased.  International tourism also burgeoned.

Today, Mexico is one of the hottest vacation destinations in the world.  Not just for Americans but for world-tourism as well.

But, no matter who was arriving off that cruise ship, plane or bus, there was always the underlying attraction of the ocean. 

Whether for fishing; diving; watersports like boating; beaches; real estate; photography…for the most part, the water was a common denominator for a vast majority.

Everyone was attracted by that big blue ocean out there in some way, shape or form. 

Whether to catch the fish of a lifetime; lie on a beach; to go on a booze cruise; to build a house; to watch whales; to get married or honeymoon; to retire;  to surf; build a house…the ocean was always the seductive siren.

 I mean, no advertises empty desert.  Right?  It’s always “ocean view.”

But lately, I’ve noticed a big difference.

People are arriving who have really no interest in the ocean or the proximity of the water.

They’re here for the food.

A “Foodie” invasion.

Not just folks who like to eat.  These are people who are hardcore into what’s on their plates.  They study.  They research.  They take notes and photos.

They post up photos of their meals on all the social media platforms.  “This is what I’m eating tonite!”

They’re not just here to eat a taco from a food cart or have nachos at happy hour.

I’ve often written about the food scene down here in Mexico.  It’s often about stepping outside your comfort zone and trying new things.

But these are whole different class of visitors.

I’ve found myself taking vacation reservations for folks who don’t ask what’s the best time to catch a marlin. 

They don’t really care if that hotel has a spa.  They don’t ask about the water temperature for scuba diving.

But, they do want my opinion about which restaurant has the best chicken mole dish. 

Or they want to know if I had tried the bearnaise sauce they’re making at some new chi-chi restaurant on the waterfront.  Is the restaurant really using an organic goat cream reduction?

Yup!  As if I knew!

gourmet-vs-gourmand-usage-6072-09ae1d24289a50ea6ce3c9e8005a7796@1x

I’ve been asked my opinion about sautee’d bluefin eyeballs or the French pastries some hot-shot chef is getting raves about at a new bakery.

These folks have researched online menus and have check-lists of eateries they intend to visit or certain dishes they specifically plan to try.  

You’ve heard of a “pub crawl.” 

I’ve had folks do things like “only taste test ceviche” at a number of restaurants.  And take notes!  Or only tacos made from triggerfish or baby octopus.

Or they are on a “food tour” to taste the difference in fish preparations between various regions such as eastern Mexico vs. Southern Mexico vs. Baja. 

There’s a big difference in preparations.  Spices and herbs.  Presentations. 

In the same way barbecued ribs might be different in Alabama compared to Minnesota in the U.S.  Or chowder on Boston’s waterfront versus San Francisco’s Fisherman’s wharf.

large_562228646

Stuff like that.

Food popularity is big business.  Just check out the Food Channels on TV sometime.  There are dozens of cooking shows 24-7 and the hosts are international food rock stars.

Yes, many of our visitors are changing and seeking culinary pursuits these days.

Some are actually chefs themselves.  A few have been cookbook authors.  Some are just gourmet adventurers. 

Some just like to eat and get that same cosmic rush over a bowl of pasta as the folks who come to battle a big fish; or ride a wave; or touch a migrating whale.

To each their own.

With the growth of so many higher-level restaurants in Mexico and Baja, being a “foodie” is a sport.  It’s a hobby.  It’s an obsession. 

Buen provecho! 

That’s my story!  

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________




Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International


Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico


U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942


Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

Read Full Post »

FIND YOUR BEACH

FIND YOUR BEACH

Originally Published the Week of Nov. 7, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

When I first found myself living down here in the Baja almost 30 years ago, I thought I was in heaven . I was “living the dream” as it were.

In my previous “life” I had gone from a litigation attorney with a pin-striped suit and briefcase running in-and-out of courthouses with a demanding schedule.

I now found myself 10 miles down a dirt road. 

I was working as the fishing guide, divemaster and chef for a little boutique hotel in a little bay.  No more than 10 or 15 persons there at a time.

I lived in a little backpacker tent I had erected on a wooden pallet on the beach.  I ran about a 100-yard extension cord from the main house so I could plug in a little 20-watt lamp.

Water was in a 5-gallon jug filled from a fresh-water well dug up in the arroyo.   I had two pairs of shorts (one for fishing and one for scuba) ; 3 t-shirts and 2 sets of flip-flops for clothes.

I did have an array of fishing gear and dive gear oh, and I adopted a little black dog I found living in the hotel trash dump.

No internet.  No phones.  These were the days before that technology.  Imagine that!

Getting supplies meant bouncing an hour down a dirt road to the nearest town. 

Days were spent fishing or diving in the prettiest bluest clearest waters I’ve ever seen in my life.  When I had no fishing clients, part of my job was to still catch fish for the hotel kitchen.

Crazy…I had a job where it was MY JOB to catch fish fresh fish!  In the freakin’ Sea of Cortez!

Nights were spent cooking in the kitchen mostly, but after that, simply sitting in a beach chair in front of my tent.  Or around the big blazing fire pit we would light for the clients and listening to the guests.

I remember skies with a zillion stars.  You could actually see galaxies.  And shooting stars Or moon-lit nights that were almost as bright as day.

And nothing but the sound of waves lapping the beach.

I touched no money.  I wore no shoes.  Never wrote a check.  Never had to “return a call.” Washed my clothes in a bucket.

It was hard work and often a long day with no days off, but what’s that saying?  “Find what you love to do and you’ll never work a day in your life.”

Sometimes you just know.

It was a special happy time.  A good time.  I had found my beach.  Just like the popular commercial. 

Fast forward almost 3 decades.  Still in Baja. 

Still doing a lot of the same things.  But now on a much larger stage and scale.

Big city.  Two big fishing fleets.  A restaurant.  Transportation company.  Dozens of clients a day coming-and-going.  No days off.  A big payroll.  All the accoutrements of running two companies in two different countries.

There are meetings and reports.  Articles to write.  Up every morning at 4 a.m.  Inventories, lists, deadlines and so many moving parts every day.

We’ve been successful and blessed beyond deserving.  I have a lovely wife now and hopefully, lots of happy employees and there’s nothing more gratifying than all the smiles we see every day.

Life is good.  Life is grand.

I’ve got miles of beach right in front of me.  I’m looking out the window as I type this.

But, it’s not MY beach.  I’m happy, but it’s not my happy place.  There’s a big difference.

So, this past week, Jill and I drove down another dirt road.  Over an hour from La Paz where we live.  We weren’t supposed to take the rental car “off-road” but hey…don’t ask permission…ask forgiveness. 

We just hoped we didn’t get stuck somewhere.  It almost happened where part of the dirt road had been washed away in the last rains and we almost got stuck in the loose sand and mud of the arroyo.

Our own rattle-trap car would definitely not have made the journey.

But, at the end of this road is a little spot. 

With a few cabanas.  And a kitchen.  And a boat ramp.  And palm trees on a beach that were planted over 100 years ago.  And a little cemetery where the folks who planted those trees now rest tucked against a cliff that rises from the ocean.

There’s a little chapel on a hill. It was built by hand when everything was brought in by boat or hauled over the mountains.

The little pool is fresh sweet water that comes from a mountain spring.  Swimming in it reminds you of bygone summer days and lying on that warm cement as a kid.

Many a time over the years, we’re the only ones there.

No music is played.  No blenders are allowed.  One must dress for dinner.  Nothing elegant. Just basic simple tasty food made by ladies in the kitchen. Some have been there for decades.

The ladies who serve dinner dress in pinafores. It’s like they stepped out’ve a time capsule when life was simpler.

Candles only light the patios and tables.

There’s a formal “cocktail hour.”  As it were. Basically, it just means it’s dark now. Come have a drink before dinner gets served .

You can fish.  Or swim.  Eat or nap.  That’s what there is to do. Did I say nap?

Listen to the ocean or the wind that blows from the mountains.  Watch the sun navigate slowly across the sky and paint the landscape with changing colors.  Watch the moon and stars take it’s place illuminating the night in nocturnal silver.

I”d love to tell you the name of the place and where it is.

But as much as I blab on in my weekly writings, I think I will keep this one to myself.   It feels like MY beach again.  It feel like a place a came to long ago and had forgotten.

It’s good to touch that again. 

Yes, you can come to visit your Cabo and Puerta Vallartas and Cancuns…and do all the tourist things.  Nothing wrong with that.

But, I hope you can also find a little dirt road down to a beach that few people know.  It might not even be on a map.   I hope you find a little something different.  Maybe a little part of yourself too. 

And keep that spot all to yourself and how you got there.  Cheers to finding your beach!

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________ 

Jonathan Roldan’s

Tailhunter Sportfishing

Website: 

www.tailhunter.com

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

Phones: 

from USA : 626-638-3383

from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863

.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCBLvdHL_p4-OAu3HfiVzW0g

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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HOMETOWN DISADVANTAGE

Just doing their jobs!

HOMETOWN DISADVANTAGE

Originally Published the Week of Oct. 30, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

If you’re a sports fan, you know about the term “homefield advantage.” It’s a fairly common term.

It means the home team has an edge.  It means, they know the field of play or know the court better.  They know the crowd and vise versa. 

They know how the ball bounces and calls by referees and penalties seem to favor the locals.  The local team gets the better locker room, etc.

It’s like that in other sports as well.

In fishing, I’d rather fish with a guy who has lived all his life on a certain stretch of river or ocean than a guy who tells me he’s fished all over the world.  There is nothing like local knowledge.

When I was a trial attorney, we hated to do a trial in another city or especially a “hometown” city or small town where everyone knew each other.

We called that “getting homered.”   We knew the odds would already be stacked against us.  

A perfect example was a case my first had against the Disney company in Orlando, Florida.  

Impossible to get a completely impartial jury or judge when everyone in the city either worked for Disney; had family or friends who worked for Disney; or had stock or other business relations with Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck.

It’s just the way it is and you play the cards you’re dealt.

It worked the same way if they came to our town.

That subject came to mind this past week on two separate occasions at our restaurant.  On both occasions, the tourists I was chatting with were complaining about Mexican laws.

One had been pulled over for speeding.

Another had been pulled over for going through a stop sign.

One said, he knew he was going faster than the posted speed limit, but he was “keeping up with the flow of traffic and there were still people speeding faster than me!”

The other admitted he only drove through the stop sign because he saw others driving through the stop sign.

Fortunately, neither of them got tickets which is pretty unusual as police officers tend to ticket tourists most times.  However, it’s still unnerving  anytime a cop stops you.  

It’s natural for anxiety levels to jump when flashing light bars come up behind you with that loud WAH-WAH siren blowing up in your ears. 

Even moreso in Mexico, I imagine.

Neither spoke Spanish, but could garner from the respective police officer that they had gotten stopped for their specific traffic infractions.  The officers did speak a little English and were professional and polite.

Both admitted that when the police officers approached, their brains went into overload wondering about jail, shakedowns, fines; etc.  All the terrible traffic cop stories they had heard.

Gratefully, the officers told them what they had done wrong and basically they received a stern lecture about being safe and a warning to be careful.   One even said, “Enjoy your vacation.”

Breathing collective sighs of relief, they drove on…ever more cautious, but understandably looking over their shoulders through their rear-view mirrors.

I did explain to them that laws are not applied equally.  Yes, there are home-town advantages and tourists (visiting team) should be aware of those inequities.

For one, tourists in rental cars stand out.  No two-ways about it.  You probably have a shiny late model car with no dings or bondo covering old accident damage.

Rental cars are clean. All the tires match.  The rental car has “car rental stickers” on the bumpers or rear hatch…a dead giveaway.

Plus there are the simple nuances of driving down here.

First and foremost follow the posted laws and use common sense about speed.  Use your turn signals.  Observe passing and turn rules, etc.  Basic stuff you learned in driver safety instruction.

But, beyond that, in Mexico just assume everyone else has the right-of-way.  Not kidding. 

It’s the safest thing to do.  No matter who gets to the stop sign or corner first or who is making the left turn assume they will take the shot. 

It’s not rude.  It’s just the way it is. Drive defensively.

By the way, stop signs are “just a suggestion.”  It’s a common joke.  Never assume someone is going to actually stop at a stop sign.

Or a traffic light.  Or, when it turns green, people zoom off the mark.  Let them go!

Usually, whichever vehicle has the most “momentum” has the right of way.  Let them go ahead and don’t get mad.  It’s just the way it is.

All vehicles are supposed to drive on the right lane.  The left lane of a two-lane highway is technically ONLY for passing.  Everyone else stays to the right.

So, pass someone then get back on the right side.  You CAN get a ticket for driving in the left lane without passing.

Open containers…ah yes.  It’s Mexico so it must be OK, right?  Beer drinking is what everyone does. 

No.  No. No.

It’s what lots of locals do.  Openly driving with a beer can in hand or six packs between the legs is common.  Or tossing a can out the window and all the passengers clearly are also enjoying cold ones.  No big deal.

I see it daily as folks drive by our restaurant on the waterfront.  I wave.  They wave back with a big smile.

It does NOT apply to you.  Definitely a big no-no.  Guaranteed to get you pulled over. 

Seatbelts?  What seatbelts?  Missing taillights?  No problem.

Not allowing someone on a crosswalk the right-of-way?  You should have stopped.  Even if everyone else almost runs them over.

Hometown rules.  Just the way it is.

Be careful.  Use common sense and safety first. 

Oh, and if there’s an accident.  No matter what.  It’s always going to be YOUR fault.  So, don ‘t get in an accident.  Best way to buzz-kill your vacation.

In all fairness, the police are not specifically out to target tourists.  In 30 years down here, almost all my interactions with law enforcement have been professional and often cordial if not downright friendly. 

I have gotten the occasional ticket, but I deserved it (went the wrong way on a one-way street and another time drove through a stop sign).  Like law enforcement everywhere, they have a job to do and it’s not an easy one.  

They drive by our restaurant or when we pass on the street, we wave.  They wave.  Often get a smile.  I just never try to give them a reason not to smile back! 

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

 
Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International

Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

.

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TWEENER DAZE

TWEENER DAZE

Originally Published the Week of Oct. 22, 2023 in Western Outdoor Publications

This is my favorite time of year in Baja.  It’s not summer anymore.  It’s not winter and it sorta feels like fall.

I call these the “tweener days.”

They take place  “tween” the Labor Day celebrations and Thanksgiving.  There’s no exact dates, but suddenly it’s like a switch has been thrown.

Or maybe it’s more like a dimmer.  Sometimes it seems to happen overnight.  Sometimes, you realize that after a few days, things have changed.

I think it hits sometime in October. 

The shadows are longer as the sun rises and sets at a different angle. I don’t know what it is, but the colors of the desert and the earth, in general, seem to change with the sun.

The air is cooler.  It’s breezier.  Mornings can be brisk and I find myself reaching for a sweatshirt or my raggedy Pendleton.

The color of the water changes as well. It still retains much of its summer warmth, but there’s a marked difference.  I think it’s just a shade or two darker blue.

Even the air is different.  That oppressive humidity and heat of the summer and early fall have diminished tremendously. 

If there had been some rain earlier, the vegetation across the hills, mountains and lowlands has exploded with life into a huge carpet of green. 

It’s no wonder the air breathes, smells and even “tastes” fresher.  It’s not as dusty or heavy.

Even the folks walking around are different.   

It’s quieter and more tranquil. The hubbub and drone of people moving about is turned down a notch.  The vibe is less hurried.

Kids are back in school. Mexican and tourist families alike.  So fewer families are in evidence. 

Most are focused ahead towards the holidays.  Beaches are less crowded.  The waterfronts are less boisterous.  Getting seated at popular restaurants are easier.

For the airlines, it’s considered off-season.  Fewer folks are in the air so there’s some great deals to be had between Labor Day and Thanksgiving. 

Same for hotels as well.  They need “heads-on-beds” and offer some excellent discounts.

For fishing, it’s different also. It can still be outstanding, especially with fewer fishermen out on the water and less boat traffic on the fishing grounds.

There’s a reason why so many international fishing tournaments take place during this time.

The only drawback I would see is that the waters can be a bit bumpier some days so you might want to keep an eye on the extended forecasts and pick your fishing days accordingly.

Or not!  Just come fishing.  Why not?

My point, get outside the box.  Break away for a quick Mexico run.  It’s a completely different experience.

That’s my story

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter Sportfishing

Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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EAVESDROPPING ON A ‘BRO’ SESSION

EAVESDROPPING ON A “BRO” SESSION

Originally Published the Week of Oct 18, 2022

Sometimes you can’t help but eavesdrop on a conversation.  I know it’s rude and we shouldn’t do it.   However, there are times when you can’t help but be drawn in.

Besides, if the folks are talking loud enough for everyone to hear…gosh…the conversation is out there!

So, I was sitting at one of the tables outside our restaurant here in La Paz.  Besides me was a group of 7 or 8 guys having a cold one after work before going home.

Just like guys everywhere stopping off to decompress a bit.  Dudes.  Bros. 

All local guys.  I knew some of them.  Others not.  But, all nice guys.  Working guys.  Mexican blue collar.

One worked in a hotel as a bellman.  One was a hotel assistant manager. 

From what I could tell, two of them were waiters from different restaurants. One was a shuttle driver.  I think one was a taxi driver and one was a charter captain.

And they were talking about tips and tipping. 

Always an interesting subject since we’re in the hospitality business ourselves with our fishing fleets, restaurant, shuttle company and association with many La Paz hotels.

They were telling stories about tips…mostly bad tips and laughing about it.

Now, I’m not agreeing or disagreeing, but just relating some of the conversation.  Not trying to create controversy about it. 

They were talking about the best and worst tippers.

All agreed that overall, gringos were the best tippers.  Overall.  Some better than others, but overall way above average.

From what I could tell, Californians and people from New York were the best.

Japanese from California were very good.  Chinese often wanted a discount, but in the end tipped well. 

The guy who seemed to work at the reception desk of some hotel said, that when he knows they are Chinese, he offers them a high rate, then discounts it to the rate he was going to give them anyway.

“They just want to know they were getting a deal and they are happy.  My boss is happy.  It’s win-win.”

He also said some folks from “eastern U.S.” were also like that.  They wanted to know they got a “deal.”

They guy who was a charter skipper said it was funny that some of the people who spend all day telling him about their big business or what they own are the worst tippers.

“I hear about all their big houses or all the places they travel to or their fancy cars. All nice and good.  Very interesting.

But at the end of the day we have lots of fish.  I do a good job.  I get a 5-dollar tip!”

“Once I had a guy who was related to the Farrari Family in Italy. Big money.  Fancy fishing clothes.  Nice fishing gear.  His wife was dressed like a fashion model to go fishing.”

“End of the day, he reaches into his pocket and gives me his pocket change.  Coins!  It added up to 40 pesos (2 dollars!).”

Of course, this lead to who are the worst tippers.

They all agreed that Canadians and Europeans are not big tippers.  But, the worst tippers were Mexicans from the United States and local Mexicans.

They actually all raised their glasses to that one .

“Many of the Mexicans from the states like to impress that they speak Spanish and many of them sure have a lot of money.  But they are cheap tippers mostly.  They leave very little or they give you a handful of coins or just a few dollars.”

The fishing captain said they sometime give him a bonito or two and think that’s “my tip” even though it’s junk fish.

The hotel guy said the ladies who clean the hotel rooms say that after several days, they’ll get two dollars left on the dresser.

The taxi and shuttle drivers said they almost never get tipped at all.  Definitely, locals never tip.

All of them agreed that the locals were the very worst.

The waiter said that many of his fellow waiters tried to avoid waiting on the locals. Everyone wants to wait on the gringo tables.

“Of course, we try to always give good service to everyone, but it’s difficult when you know that your service isn’t appreciated.”

He said, “Locals will run up 100 dollars for a meal for a family.  And then they will leave 1 dollar in coins as the tip.” 

“It’s just the way locals are.” said another. “If you have not worked in the service industry, you don’t understand how we all depend on tips.”

“Again, often the wealthiest Mexicans who have the money to eat at restaurants or stay in good hotels are the worst tippers.”

Several of them agreed that they could almost tell where people were from by the way they tipped.  

Overall, most of them said that the bad tips evened-out with the good tips at the end of the day.  But, just disappointing how some people can be such poor tippers or not appreciate their hard work.

That’s my story!

Jonathan

______________

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International

Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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FLIRTING WITH DISASATER

UH-OH!

FLIRTING WITH DISASTER

Originally Published the Week of Oct. 10, 2022 in Western Outdoor Publications

Being in the travel and hospitality business down here in Baja, it’s been interesting watching travel trends lately.  We’ve hosted thousands of fishermen, friends and clients over almost 30 years here in La Paz.

I would venture to say 99.9% of them fly from the U.S. on the various airlines that serve this area. 

We all know that 2020 was covid year.  Air travel, or any travel for that matter, was a disaster.

Last year, 2021 was a bit better.  Still lots of folks hesitant to travel.  Many of the travel protocols were still in place.

However, with each passing month, there’s no disputing that an increasing number of folks were starting to get out.  Travel, especially internationally, boomed in direct proportion to the reduction in covid protocols such as masks, testing, vax cards, distancing, etc. 

You remember all those, right?

This year, without a doubt, travel is in full-turbo.  Covid be damned.  Cabin fever and covid fatigue from being cooped up has travel busting at the seams.

Insofar as we own our own shuttle transportation company down here, we’ve got 7 vans running daily between cities and airports.  We’re pretty tuned into the comings-and-goings of airlines and airports.

In all our years doing this, I don’t think I’ve ever encountered so many cancelled flights; delayed flights and lost luggage.  In “normal” years, I would have to deal with an issue maybe only 1 or 2 times a month during out fishing season.

These days, it has become almost a daily occurrence. 

What’s happening?

Well, of course, there are the unavoidable things like bad weather.  It happens.

But, am I the only one or is it happening more often? 

A screen showing cancelled flights as more than 1,400 American airlines have been canceled due to staff shortages and unfavorable weather in Los Angeles, California, U.S.

Hurricanes, tropical storms, unusual snowstorms, tornado warnings…as I write this, I think there are two more storms already brewing in the Caribbean.

Global warming or whatever.  It jacks flights up and everyone understands that it’s something that happens. I doubt any of us wants to be in an airplane anyway in bad weather.

But, what about all the other reasons.

I spoke to a good friend who just retired as a career commercial pilot. 

He told me that during Covid so many airline employees were terminated as a business move.  It seemed like a good idea at the time.

In hindsight, maybe not so much. 

Now, the airlines are like everyone else.  Can’t find enough workers and staff.  This includes flight attendants, mechanics, maintenance, pilots and more.

It’s not like you can just find trained pilots or mechanics like McDonald’s finds someone to cook French fries.   So, heavy bookings coupled with a lack of crews has had a huge impact.

As well, higher fuel prices have affected air travel just like they have affected our own highway driving.  It costs more to fill those tanks.  Issues with oil producers like Russia and the Middle East have not helped.

Another issue is simple airport logistics.  Too many flights.  Too many people travelling and not enough or out-date airports or airport space. 

My last half-dozen flights, we sat on the tarmac either waiting to take off; waiting for enough crew; or a mechanical issue.  Or, upon landing, no gates available to park the plane.

For us personally, running a tourism-based operation here in Baja, it has often been a nightmare for us let alone our haggard travelers.

Flights getting canceled.  Late planes.  Lost luggage.  Re-routing have become an almost daily occurrence.  It’s become as common as that salty bag of peanuts they now give you on flights.

We’ve pretty much come to almost expect it.  All day, I monitor my e-mails, texts and phone calls expecting to hear that someone missed their flight; or lost their luggage; or are now arriving at midnight.

A couple of tips, especially with holiday travel looming…

Minimize the number of connecting flights.  The fewer changes, the less likely you’ll have a delay or cancelation.  It’s like a chain only being as good as it’s weakest travel link.

If one connecting flight is late, it might mean you miss your next flight.

Minimize your luggage.  Seems obvious.  There’s less to lose.

And give yourself plenty of time.  Airport delays are common at check-in or just to find parking!  Don’t be that person doing the “O.J.” Simpson dash through the airport and being the last person to check in your luggage.

You might make the flight  Your luggage is going to Brazil.

For Pete’s sake, pack medications, and other essential health items in your carry-on.  Or at least enough to get by. 

Several years ago, one of our clients went 3 days before his luggage showed up.  He was not doing well and his skin was turning kinda yellow.  He finally admitted that his colostomy bag was in his lost luggage!

Oh, one other thing.  Make a copy of your passport.  Keep the original with you, but pack a copy somewhere else.  You’ll thank me later.

Lastly, try not to book your flights during the busiest periods of the day.

We all like to depart at a reasonable hour.  We like to arrive at our destinations at a reasonable hour. 

Well, so does everyone else.  It’ll mean the airport is packed.  It will mean planes are packed.  If your plane is late or has an issue, it’s harder to find another flight

When you arrive, the airport will be stuffed as well.  You could be ages getting through customs, immigration and rental car agencies.  That’s another story.  There’s not enough rental cars for everyone that reserves one.

And they can’t give you one until other people return their cars!

It’s a vicious circle.

Minimize the risks so you can have a smooth, safe and easy travel day.

That’s my story

Jonathan

Jonathan Roldan has been writing the Baja Column in Western Outdoor News since 2004.  Along with his wife and fishing buddy, Jilly, they own and run the Tailhunter International Fishing Fleet in La Paz, Baja, Mexico  www.tailhunter.com.

They also run their Tailhunter Restaurant Bar on the famous La Paz malecon waterfront.  If you’d like to contact him directly, his e-mail is: jonathan@tailhunter.com

Or drop by the restaurant to say hi.  It’s right on the La Paz waterfront!

_____________

Jonathan Roldan’s
Tailhunter International

Website:

Mexico Office: Tailhunter International, 755 Paseo Obregon, La Paz, Baja Sur, Mexico

U.S. Mailing Address:  Tailhunter International, 8030 La Mesa Blvd. #178, La Mesa CA  91942
Phones:
from USA : 626-638-3383
from Mexico: 044-612-14-17863
.

Tailhunter Weekly Fishing Report:  http://fishreport.jonathanroldan.com/

Tailhunter YouTube Video Channel:

“When your life finally flashes before your eyes, you will have only moments to regret all the things in life you never had the courage to try.”

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