Sadly, all good things must come to an end

Ensenada is a working port, and as such it is dusty and dirty. While boat washing is less critical, here it is a requirement. As is cleaning dock lines, sail stack, blocks, anything that moves. When I moved Strikhedonia down to CruisePort in Ensenada July of 2014 I got lined up a guy to wash her every two weeks. His name, Rogelio. Rogelio, is younger guy and hard worker. I was disappointed to learn that his job at the marina had changed and he could no longer wash my boat. However, a new guy was available…

Since I don’t live aboard yet and I need to keep up on cleaning I was pretty much stuck until my next trip to Mexico. Well that happened last weekend and what a shitstorm I stumbled into.

Good news first, my boat was clean and looked good when I arrived. Relieved I didn’t have to jump into cleaning mode upon arrival I was able to attend to other items on the never ending to-do list. The next day I was flagged down by Jesus the guy who manages the crew who washed my boat. I appreciated his follow up and tracking me down. However, as the conversation continued I could sense a bit of desperation and pressure to agree to keep him and his crew washing my boat. I explained that I could not afford to have him continue washing my boat twice a week since his rate was twice what Rogelio charged. I left it with him that I would talk to the marina manager and let him know but for now to not do any more cleanings.

On the morning Net I got the first piece to the puzzle. Evidently there is now only one company/person who is authorized to wash boats in the marina and the marina is tacking on a 20% surcharge. So unlike the cash payments I made to Rogelio, this would all be run through the marina. Pissed off but not yet aware of the whole story I left to ponder an alternative solution.

That afternoon my slip mate came up to me and explained that there was more to the story. He explained that Jesus was connected to the Mexican mob, and they had gotten the marina manager fired, the new intern marina manager was scared and would go along with what he was told to do. Interesting…

He continued that a group of 15-16 owners had banded together and agreed to not use Jesus in an attempt to force the marina to allow other providers. Also, the owner of the marina (a Hong Kong company) had been contacted to express this issue and others – an further attempt to get improvements for the boat owners. At the end of the conversation, it made more sense why I was pressured by Jesus and I agreed to no longer use his services.

The following day a knock on the boat brought the introduction of another live-aboard who was the person taking the lead role in reaching out to the marina owner. He went into a lot more detail of the issues (some security, some maintenance, and some management) that he and other boat owners wanted addressed. He was collecting letters to send to the marina owners detailing the complaints. I added my letter to his pile on Sunday.

How about a happy picture, out sailing!

After nearly two years I guess it was time for some drama. Too bad it couldn’t hold off three more months until after I move up to San Diego for some upgrades…

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