The Sounds of Boca Never End

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Dinner on the beach at Boca de Tomaltan, Mexico.
Dinner on the beach.

On Mexico’s Pacific coast, a banquet of sounds wafts forth all day and all night. At bedtime, it was a few booms, as loud as  a cannon but we assume instead, leftover New Years fireworks blasting from an unseen beach detonation location.

In the earliest part of the morning, before light has come, it’s the sounds of the birds, different species waking each other up, wafting up from the jungle that looms up the hill behind the Casa.

Shrieks and squawks eventually give way to the more familiar sounds of the roosters…the scrawny beasts we see skittering out of the way on rocky footpaths, thin, athletic looking birds that wouldn’t make much of a dinner. These guys compete with each other as the sun rises on the opposite of the Pacific.

Then the boatmen begin stirring; men who navigate the choppy ocean in long blue water taxis, some festive with royal blue roofs, others just the long deep-hulled ocean speedboats preferred by Somalia’s pirates. But these friendly senors are just gassing up, tipping their motors up as they cruise carefully across the shallow water of the Rio towards the mouth that takes them to the dock, where their passengers await. The water taxis ply routes between villages up and down the coast and as schoolbuses too.

Up on the hill, busses chug and grind their gears as they make the steep climb toward the big city, passing big cement trucks make even more gear grinding clatter. We hear what some of us swear are monkeys, screeches in the dark night, that the next day we are told they might actually be geckoes.

Mary paints from the Casa balcony.
Mary painting on the balcony overlooking the river. We were staying with painter Robert Masla who shares his techniques and ideas at the painter's workshops held at his studio.

When the sun is up and glinting off the water, the men across the river start up again on their project, constructing two new small palapas for Justin’s restaurant, and the sound of a drill is heard as they attach thatch to create the roof.  The oompa oompa oompa of a tuba is another regular sound, from a bar playing up tempo Mexican tunes for visiting touristas. Though we heard that bass line nearly all day, when we went over across the rickety Indiana Jones wooden bridge to the village, the sound was gone when we came close.