Puerto Penasco, Mexico: This morning we woke to the best weather of our stay at the beach. So beautiful. So peaceful. So relaxing. There was a minus-tide overnight so there was plenty of beach to jog on this morning… except there were so many little streamlets to cross, it was more like a steeplechase than a jog. (Many of you know how much I enjoy a steeplechase – not.) I limped back to our campsite soaked, sore and in need of a hot shower. DT had to wash my shoes again – though this time he remembered to remove my NIKE+ chip!

Dave and I decided to linger on in Puerto Penasco for a few more days, so walked down to the RV park office to “re-up”. Do not forget – this campground is basically empty. We could not reserve our site for even one more day. The manager claimed he was full starting tomorrow. A Wednesday.

I think not.

Our fellow campers have promised to send an email if the campground is full tomorrow.

Since we were now hitting the road tomorrow, after a lovely lunch prepared by yours truly, we headed into town to stimulate the local economy.

I made a chicken salad using fat-free Greek yoghurt and country-style Dijon and sliced green onion, and served it over sliced tomatoes and avocados drizzled in a little olive oil. It was yummy.

One place my Mom always liked to visit in Puerto Penasco is the “Dirt Mall”. This one-street shopping area used to consist of sheds on a sandy road and was thus dubbed the Dirt Mall. A few years ago, the city decided to spruce it up a bit and paved the streets, put in covered sidewalks and enticed a higher-caliber vendor to sell their goods. It is possible to still find tacky t-shirts at the Dirt Mall, but if you want actual Mexican handicrafts, this is the place to go. (This week, I also heard the Dirt Mall called “Shacks 5th Avenue”, which really made me laugh.)

Just don’t ask me how to get to the Dirt Mall… it is north of town, on the west side of the train tracks.

The Dirt Mall in Puerto Penasco

Anything you could possibly imagine for sale on this street

Beautiful pottery

Pretty dolls

Officially-sanctioned Nike merchandise

Museum-quality originals

Tasteful shot glasses

Sorry, couldn’t help myself…  the “stream” is fishing line.

Actually, most of the merchandise is of very good quality.

Except for the monkey shot glasses.

This shop sells welcome signs for your house, ceramic house numbers, light fixtures and drinking glasses. Lots and lots of drinking glasses.

These glass sets are for margaritas or martinis.

Something for everyone in Puerto Penasco.

Except me. I didn’t find a thing to buy today… until I walked into a shop and saw a woman making this:

She was crafting purses out of candy, cookie and potato chip (Mylar?) bags! The inside of the bags look exactly like the outside and they have a zip top. $15. I bought one and I will keep it until The Lovely Lisa sees it and “borrows” it from me. Adorable purse.

Our last errand before heading back to the US in the morning was to buy a few pounds of flounder (to freeze). Of course, we headed to “The Three Boys” stall at the fish market on the Malacon downtown. Our family has been purchasing fish from Juan for about ten years now.

This is Juan with my Dad. Juan sold me six pounds of flounder fillets for (US) $12.50.

Puerto Penasco is famous for the huge shrimp caught off-shore.

Back at the campground…

… we enjoyed one last sunset on the beach.

Mother Nature sent us on our way with a beautiful sunset.

For dinner, Dad, DT and I went into town for flounder (never mind that I bought six pounds of flounder today!) at one of the most popular restaurants in Puerto Penasco – The Friendly Dolphin. The Friendly Dolphin is a huge restaurant on two levels with several large dining rooms – plus a bar. Only three tables were full this evening. I have no idea how the restaurants and hotels are staying in business. We did all we could to help out:

Yep. Garlic fish. Again.

Until my next update, I remain, your floundering correspondent.

RV Park:  The Reef RV Park – Hundreds of campsites, all in sand. 30 & 50 amp power, water and sewer. Some power hookups are shared – one camper gets the 50 amp, and their neighbor has to use the 30 amp. This campground is popular with ATVers, families and many Canadians spend the winter here. A regular campsite (non-ocean front) is $150 week.

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