Tag Archive: San Carlos

Sea Lions

Hellooooo!!! This vlog is about my snorkelling trip to San Pedro Island to see sea lions! I also talk a lot about my sea sickness, fun times. Just click on the picture to watch it. Enjoy!

sea 2


My friend, Martin, alerted me to two pieces of information that I missed out. So thanks Martin for letting me know.

So firstly, apparently, I don’t suffer from sea sickness; I suffer from motion sickness.

Secondly, (now this is apparently “the best” part of the story) while I was sick and generally feeling sorry for myself, I was lying down on the boat by the water’s edge. Then suddenly somebody popped up from the underneath the water. It was Martin (Mar-teen in Spanish). “Hi Monique,” he boomed energetically. He asked me if I was ok. “I’m ok, I’m just feeling…” Then I couldn’t finish my sentence. I vomited right in front of him. Nice. The end. I didn’t even remember that happening, to be honest. I was just pretty zoned out. Who knows what other golden nuggets of information I missed out just because I was sick. Oh well.



‘Ello, ‘ello, ‘ello! I have yet another vlog for you. This time, it’s about the first time I felt at home in Mexico, and it includes a short video from Viva Mexico. Just click on my picture to watch it. Enjoy! 🙂


When you hear the word desert, what image comes to your mind? If you’ve not really been exposed to a desert in ‘real life’, then maybe one of these images below spring to mind…

desert 1 desert 2 desert 3

Well, these were the images that I had in my head, when I heard that I’d be riding a horse through the Sonoran Desert, and more specifically through Nacapule Canyon. I knew that I’d be living in a desert, but because I didn’t initially see much of it around me, I just forgot about that fact. That was until I arrived at the stables; I was really surprised to find myself in one of the greenest deserts I have ever laid eyes on. Ok, it was the only desert that I have personally seen, but that’s beside the point. I was surrounded by a lot of vegetation, and it quickly became apparent that this was the source of my allergies, or at least one source because I am so frail (apparently, I will never be able to survive the zombie apocalypse). Some ‘city dudes’ from nearby Hermosillo mocked me for making the assertion that the pollen was affecting me.

“How can you be sneezing because of the pollen? We are in the middle of a desert,” they playfully scoffed. But in the end, I was right, so they can put that in their pipes and smoke it!

IMG_8732   IMG_8634

horse pic 1   10697423_10154758465310523_546618937066841505_o

With even the least amount of rainfall, the desert just soaks up the water like a sponge, allowing plants to thrive. Even though the Sonoran Desert is apparently the hottest desert in North America, it is home to approximately 2,000 species of plants, such as legume trees and columnar cacti, as well as many species of mammals, reptiles, birds, bees and fish. The desert covers around 100,000 square miles and spans across parts of the U.S. and Mexico.


A small section of the desert, Nacapule Canyon in San Carlos, is no exception to this rule of a diverse ecology and it too has its fair share of wildlife and plants… and caravans, much like Breaking Bad, but perhaps with more meth labs working collaboratively or in peaceful coexistence.


And did I mention snakes and tarantulas? I saw a couple of tarantulas crawling along and it sent shivers down my spine, as if I wasn’t already apprehensive about riding a horse in the first place. Let’s just say that the last time I rode a horse was… eventful, and I was left with a souvenir of my experience in the form of ringworm. But the owner of the horses, who has now become a friend, looks after her horses really well and the horses are well behaved.


Nevertheless, I couldn’t shake the feeling of dread and fear. I mean there were flipping tarantulas and snakes – I mean, real ones! I heard that horses can get freaked out by them. What if it did, and I fell off and then they decided to crawl all over me?! I would die from fear alone!!

Well on my first ride on my second weekend in Mexico, my horse didn’t get spooked. Instead while I was trying to take photos, my lens cap dropped on the floor. I have to admit I started to panic, but Natalie, the owner, came to my rescue, and then everything turned out ok. Apart from the point towards the end when my horse decided that it really wanted to gallop, because it was bored. I could feel its muscles contract; that it was preparing itself to go faster. It was then that I truly understood the meaning of horsepower, and I was petrified! But nothing really happened in the end, this time. I’ll talk about my time horse riding on the beach at a later date.

IMG_4272      IMG_8742

All in all, horse riding through the canyons was an awesome experience, and I liked it so much that I did it again at a later date.

IMG_8683    IMG_4265

If you’re in the San Carlos area and you fancy riding a horse, then you can contact my friend, Natalie.

Rancho Nacapule Trail Rides.

Email: natenglish77@aol.com

+52 1 622 101 2208

IMG_9441     IMG_9506

My first weekend!

My first weekend in Mexico was pretty eventful. I met up with the school’s other English teachers, Martin and Sara, who were already there and we decided to go out. Someone who works at the school, Gloria, very kindly and warmly invited us to her house so that we could all go together to a beachside restaurant/club called La Salsa in San Carlos, Guaymas.

La Salsa, which is about a 20-30 minute drive from central Guaymas, is a very popular place to go out at the moment in the area; one Mexican described it to me as a “boom place”. I later discovered that there aren’t actually that many places to go out where I am, and that Friday nights are pretty low-key with the locals, but I don’t really like going out on Friday’s, so that actually suits me just fine.

“This place didn’t exist about 10 years ago or so,” muses Gloria’s husband, Adan. He told us that there was nothing on the beach front where La Salsa now stands, and that he went to that beach most weekends with a friend and there was hardly anyone on there. They started to invite people to come with them and have parties there, then those people invited other people, and then it just kind of snowballed from there.

What I quickly discovered once I arrived in Guaymas is how little information there is on the internet about events and activities that take place there. For example, I had been searching high and low online for a capoeira club in Guaymas, among other things, and had been coming up with absolutely nothing. All that kind of information is usually spread by word of mouth through your connections.

“What sports do you guys like to do?”Adan asked the three of us. For each activity, his response was, “ Well, I have a friend who…” and then bingo, the connection was made, for most of us.

The night out in La Salsa was so much fun and was a great way to celebrate my move to the country; Mexicans definitely know how to have a good time! And instead of having a kebab, or something similar, as post-club food, Gloria and Adan took us back to their house and gave us some homemade tacos, which were bloomin’ awesome!


The next day, we spent the day at the beach, which was bliss, despite the fact that there were quite a few rocks and shells on the beach. This was because a couple of weeks before, the area was affected by a hurricane. This was the same hurricane the my manager alerted me about before I came, which sent me into panic-mode before I arrived, but it had obviously impacted San Carlos more than it had central Guaymas.



On Sunday, we went snorkelling. I was nervous about going snorkeling anyway. What made it a thousand times worse was the fact that I read that there was a hurricane in the area. Being out on the open sea with the storm was definitely the last place I wanted to be.

We arrived at the boat rental shop, and the owner said that they would have to turn the boat around while we were out there if the storm got any closer to our location. I was petrified of the storm, I was terrified about swimming, I was anxious about snorkeling for the first time; it was just all too much for little old me and I began to have heart palpitations! However, upon hearing about the nearby storm, Sara squealed and said: “Cooool, a hurricane!!!!” Gulp!

“Does everyone know you can’t swim yet?” a friend so helpfully asked via WhatsApp. I can actually swim, I’m just not a strong swimmer, but I assured him that I had told them that and I thanked him for his encouragement.

I was panicking and I unintentionally made my friend worry by mentioning the storm through a WhatsApp message and then leaving my phone in my bag, without relaying a message back that everything was actually ok.

As it turned out, as with most of my fears, the storm didn’t come anywhere near us, thank God!! So that was one less thing to worry about. However, I was still apprehensive about swimming.

We arrived at our location and Sara and Martin effortless jumped into the water and began to happily swim around the cove. Even though I had a life jacket on, I was too paralysed by fear to jump into the water. In my head, there were too many things to remember: spit on the googles then wash them in the sea so that they didn’t fog up, jump into the water a certain way so that the flippers don’t come off, jump in without putting the mouth guzzle into my mouth and then position it into my mouth once I had surfaced – it was just all too much!! So I just stood on the edge of the boat for what must have been an eternity. The two crew members tried to count me in so many times that they just gave up in the end, laughed so hard at me and went about their boat duties. To be honest I really don’t blame them, I must have been a pathetic sight. I’m pretty sure I saw one of them get out his camera phone to take a picture of me, but he denied it when I asked him to send me the photo.

I eventually plucked up the courage to jump in. Ok, so I actually slid into the water from a seated position at the edge of the boat, but that was a proud moment for me, even if it didn’t look so graceful. I initially panicked with the whole breathing-through-the-snorkel malarkey, but once I calmed down I actually genuinely loved it, even though the picture of us in the water below, which was taken at the end, tells a different story. The water was so clear and I could see a variety of fish. The boat crew even had to call me a few times to swim back to the boat as I didn’t really want to leave. It was such a great experience and it was definitely something that I wanted to do again!

From that day, we made a pact to do something active every weekend… It hasn’t quite turned out the way that we hoped, though. Us English teachers aren’t quite paid enough to have that kind of luxurious lifestyle; but we initially gave it our best shot!