We wake before sunrise and climb the ladder up to our roof to watch the sunrise psychedelics unfold.
It is spectacular show of vermillion, purple and orange climaxing with the blinding rays of the sun radiating up from the horizon. Downstairs I boil water over our propane stove and with our French Press, make coffee at least as good if not better than Starbucks. We sit on the terrace gazing at the reflective blue of the ocean until the brilliance forces us to turn our chairs towards the majesty of the desert mountains, a collage of subtle purples and muted greens in the morning light.
The day is growing overcast but threatens to be a hot one and we set out on an early morning beach walk. We take a circuitous route because Art wants to show me the newest construction monstrosity up the coast from us. Overall the architectural design of the new house is pleasing, but its infinity pool and a raised walkway out to the palapa covered terrace intrude far onto the beach. It obliterates the previously pristine ocean view of an old time resident. Undoubtedly, this will also happen to us but in the meantime we take great pleasure in the modesty of our house and its ocean and mountain views.
I write and putter the morning away, cook a simple pepper and onion frittata on the stove top that we eat in the open air ambiance on our terrace. Less is sometimes more.
All of Zacatitos is invited to a party tonight and I’m anxious, not knowing what to expect or what I should bring to contribute. Potlucks are challenging enough with a supermarket around the corner and the modern conveniences of a fully equipped kitchen. Art assures me that we need not contribute anything more than drinks. Not wanting to arrive famished and find that there is no food, I insist that we have a light dinner at Zac’s beforehand. It is dark when we leave the restaurant with only casual directions to the party; follow the main road back towards Punte Gorda, turn right on the dirt road just before the point and follow it around until we hear the music. We make several wrong turns, backtracking and retracing our route before I determinedly set off on foot, down a rutted and rocky road with my solar lantern in hand to ascertain if the presumed road is passable to our rental car. Art drives the car behind me lighting my way and I feel exhilarated in the adventure. The desert night air is cool and smells of sage, sea and dirt. I want to bottle the fragrance. I motion Art over and around obstacles and ruts in the road sorely wishing for a four wheel drive vehicle but we soon hear the rhythm of the music and follow the rock and roll beat and park at the end of a row of envyable 4 wheel drive vehicles.
We enter the open gates of the property, moving towards the music and the lights spilling colored star dust across a cement pad where silhouettes undulate to the rhythm. I recognize Herb, playing the electric guitar and am soon introduced to Dr. Dave who later on will make music on the keyboard. Two other guitarists strum out the beat and a petit dark haired woman sings vocal. The party is not as big as my imagination; perhaps 30-35 guests; dancing, drinking and talking about the things that one talks about if one lives off the grid in Baja. I recognize a few faces and weave my way towards the modest kitchen to contribute my bottle of wine. Most guests are drinking beer or tequila but I locate a cork screw and pour Art and myself a plastic cup of wine to share. For me, socializing is not always easy but I am happy to meet more of our neighbors and to connect the dots between houses, faces and each person’s unconventional pursuit of happiness in this eclectic community. The music is loud and danceable and Art pulls me onto the cement floor where lights spin and sparkle and I happily gyrate and watch the guests from afar. The party is not wild but there is magic here tonight. No police will arrive to quiet us and there are no conventions to uphold. It is retro and timeless and all inclusive. We mingle periodically and Art, much more the social butterfly, introduces me to people whom he knows, some aging hippies like ourselves, many in quirky costumes and each one with a story to tell. We stay until the music ends and drive a less rugged route back to our Casa on the knoll.