Thursday, August 20, 2015

Friday Boat Parade

We were given a schedule of events for the Festival, and Friday said it was the Procesion Maritima at 10am, we knew from the previous month the boats launched from in front of the house, so we were very excited. When we awoke Friday, there was already a buzz,  a DJ booth and shade structure was being set up and the beer was being delivered. The elves had been busy in the night and streamers were hung from the street lights, balloons were being brought by the car loads to gussy up the boats, it was only a matter of time before the loud music would start.

Behind our nearest tienda, Anderson and Patricia's family, the mass was about to take place, and then we would board the boats. Fernando Father Fishermen asked if we wanted to go in the Robinson, and we said SI! Then Raphael asked, and Ramon asked, and was so nice to have so many offers! When it was time, we made our way down to the water, into the boat for the first time, how exciting...we had almost no idea what was to happen, all we knew was we were on a boat.

Father fishermen's youngest boy Michael in the white shirt, Alejanders boy at the motor, and bye bye shoreline...

Robinson, Father fishermen's oldest boy, and boat namesake in yellow, and little did we know we were headed for that shrimp boat...

The boy in white tank top happened to stick close to us all day, didnt really realize til we were watching the video footage, he may have been asked to keep an eye on us, he is part of the Father Fishermen family, and always waves to us. Sweet to think they wanted to make sure we were safe, we did turn out to be the only Gringos on the boat. (most of the people were from "away" but were Ecuadorean visiting family, not many locals on the boat)

So, how does one get from a small boat to a very large shrimp boat while in the water? We were about to find out...

There were three or four young men waiting to throw ropes and help pull one up, there were some foot holds, but you had to be careful not to get fingers caught between the two moving boats...yikes, but we made it! So NOW WE ARE ON THE BOAT!

We found a good place out of the way and watched as the small boats brought the partiers, here is one of our guys, Junior after dropping off his passengers.

We made friends with the Captain, the guy in red, and his dog, and enjoyed this place until he told us it was time to move, they were going to pull up anchor. We got another great seat, right up front, watched them work to bring the anchor up and off we go!

There's our chaperon, and you can see the smaller boats congregating.

You can just see the tip of the anchor, since we were under the impression we would be in a small boat, we only took our video camera in its waterproof case, so these pictures are screen shots taken from the video.

We stayed here for a bit, then the captain asked us if we wanted to go up top...sure, why not?!

Yikes! No railings, and those ribbons were all we had to hold on to...maybe we better sit down.

Hey, is that our friend in the white tank top!?

We went all the way to Crucita, turned around and headed back. Some of the little boats dropped off, but most stayed with us the whole time. Next year we would like to go with our friends in one of their smaller boats. Thank goodness for the marine layer, we ended up being out on the water almost 4 hours.

As we approached the drop off point, we made our way downstairs (not easy in the crowd) found they had served food, chicken fried rice in to go cups, nice! And we waited to get off, Fernando came to pick us up, but we could not get off in time, so we caught the next one. (This whole trip was free, even the food? Donation? I don't know)

This boat too was over loaded, and we had to kneel in the bottom of the boat. It was very tippy and precarious, but we made it ashore with our lunch!

After we got used to walking on land, we met up with Fernando Father fishermen, thanked him and decided we were all going home for showers, lunch and back out to the beach party behind Andersons tienda. We ate our arroz con pollo, opened a beer and got from boat parade to party mode, wow! What a day! 

The party was fun, dancing with our friends, sharing beers and watching our town whoop it up, being apart of it, REALLY a part of it was awesome! Can't wait til next year, when our relationships are even stronger and we know even more towns people. This party was winding down, and we knew it would move to El Centro where the big bandstand was set up for tonight's band. We went home, watched sunset and waited for our friends to meet up. 

The streets were packed, vendors set up selling everything from kids toys to pizza. The band started almost on time, 9ish was loud and kept us moving. There were three beer tents set up, so never was the line long. (We had had enough drinking by that point) We stayed downtown til just after midnight, and then had to say goodnight, what a day! 

Amazing, can't wait til next year! Stay tuned, the adventure continues...


  1. Enjoyed your post & photos - lots of fun - those fishing trawlers were so full of folks and listing to one side it seemed precarious ! You may enjoy some photos of the 2nd Annual Festival del Marisco in 2011 here

    1. Thank you so much for the link, I'll sift thru it all in the coming weeks. If you ever want to come back to the beach, we can house swap for a long weekend! We would love to see Loja