While walking the beach this morning with my two canine companions, it occurred to me that there is a big difference between vacationing in our little corner of paradise and living here.
While many folks have made Peñasco their destination of choice for family vacations, weekend getaways and even part time residency, those of us who live here full time see things, and know things, that the occasional visitors don’t. I like to think of that difference as having found the “rhythm” of this place.
Now, those of you who are ‘of a certain age’ and religious persuasion might remember the “rhythm method!” Not the same thing! There are many types of ‘rhythms’ to life and living in such a beautiful and tranquil place as Puerto Peñasco there is one too.
When many vacationers or weekenders come to our fair city, they come with preconceived notions and plans as to what they will do while here. There are the wonderful, modern accommodations at the hotels on Sandy Beach, new communities like Encantame, as well as many other rental properties. Our guests can kick of their shoes and get their toes in the sand, enjoy the local cuisine, seafood, night life and wonderful climate.
There is ample opportunity for recreation such as world-class golf, fishing, whale watching, sunset cruising and boating on the Sea of Cortez. For the sports minded, taking in a baseball game to watch the local team (Los Tiburones) play is a great way to spend an evening or afternoon. Then there are those folks who like to ‘dig into’ the local scene to get a feel for the culture and to what makes Mexico in general, and Peñasco in particular, such a nice place to be.
All of that, and more can be enjoyed just about any time here. What is a little harder to define is the sense of this place. The daily ebb and flow of the community, the changing seasons and their impact on the daily life of our city are sometimes not as easy to know, or at least are not as visible to the casual observer. That’s where the rhythm comes in.
While I know many ‘old timers’ who have been coming to Peñasco for decades to fish or just to ‘hang out,’ even they sometimes don’t get it. When people come to visit, they are, almost by definition, leaving their daily life rhythms to decompress and unwind. They really don’t notice the little things that living in, and with, the community can bring to the surface.
Living out on the playas, watching the sea moving across the sands and reshaping the beaches almost daily can be mesmerizing. The tides, winds, storms, surf, sun, salt air and sand can be considered living things if you watch them long enough. Folding those thoughts into your daily or weekly trips into town, and then interacting with the local merchants and friends feels different than coming to town to party or to “take the knots out of your rope” as so many visitors do.
When there is no imperative to “do” something every day or to make the most out of your vacation time here, you begin to detect that you might be getting in rhythm with the community and the area at large. Don’t make the mistake of bringing the stress with you.
I understand that being retired (“jubilado’’ in Español) puts a different spin on what I am saying, but even with that caveat, living each day in this little corner of paradise can be a life changing experience if you can take the time to find the rhythm.
The frantic pace many keep in their ‘real world’ lives masks the tranquility of life that many dream of, but few achieve, in such a place as Puerto Peñasco. It takes a concerted effort to shed the frenetic activity that seems pervasive in almost every corner of stateside life and to see and feel…really see and feel…the rhythm of this place. It takes a long while for most of us to even recognize it, even when it taps on your consciousness and whispers in your mind.
It’s that little voice telling you to ‘chill,’ and watch the children play in the parks, listen to the vendors hawking their wares (“almost free!!!”) and taking a leisurely stroll along the sand with the waves lapping at your ankles with no agenda in mind. It’s waking up to a beautiful azure sky, balmy temperatures and a glassy sea and not thinking about everything you want to do today. Just sipping your coffee and taking it all in. Do that long enough and you’ll feel the rhythm.