Family Beach Sabbatical

Beach Livin'-Where Life is Really, Really Good

Day four of seven here, all of 13 kilometers south of Zorritos, Peru with our family beach sabbatical along the Peruvian coast up to six weeks and counting.

It’s been a very good run. Each stop doing its bit to ratchet up the fun factor to what should prove a grand finale of sorts. A Christmas reunion with good friends starting in little more than four more days for a solid month on a beach just south of Montanitas across the border in Ecuador.

But that is then. For now, with stops and bus transfers in places with names like Paracas, Lima, Trujillo, Huanchaco, Pacasmayo and Mancora behind us, we find ourselves in the midst of the ‘arduous task’ of settling in to our present AirBnB beachfront abode for the week.

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A great way to kill an afternoon.

A clean and tidy unit with functioning hot water, soft pillows and mattresses and, for those so inclined, satellite TV. But more importantly, a unit whose covered front patio offers the sort of view many a corporate office employee has tacked to their cubical wall as motivation to get them through their week.

Soft beach sand and coconut laden palm trees out the front door leading past a shaded, evening sunset viewing cabana all of five or six giant bounding steps to the water’s edge. And incredibly warm water at that, with our northerly progress finally escaping the grasp of the cold Humboldt current.

The property goes by the name of Swiss Wassi and, in addition to the two

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A room with a 'decent' view.

available bungalows for rent, the property is a well-known spot for numerous tripped out overlanding vehicles that pass through in a fairly steady succession.

In just three days we’ve met the South African couple of Dieter and Karin Butow from Aufpad.com, Adam and Maggie and Manuel and Judy from the respective Instagram feeds of Letsnotpanic and TwingoSudaca and Germans Tobi and Anja plowing along for more than a year now in their Volkswagon ‘Westie’.

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Manuel and Judy

Just to name a few.

Each with their own unique sizes and style of overland autos, their own tales and their own reasons for loading up and heading out on such journeys. Journeys whose costs and extensive red tape issues have lead me to believe what I first began to suspect not long after our family first crossed paths with the Argentinian duo of Juan and Lucia from TroncosViajeros.

This being having your own wheels isn’t always all it’s cracked

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Tobi and Anja

up to be and, as such, there’s definitely something to be said for the less liberating rigors of South American bus travel.

Still, it’s been an educational experience and not all dealing with the ins and outs of South American overland travel. Especially with the prospect of the Galapogos Islands looming ever larger on the horizon. And when all is said and done, getting educated is a very big reason for setting out in the first place.

But rest assure, it’s not all been educational. Far from it, actually.

No, there on what often seems like our very own private beach, there’s plenty to do. There’s sandcastle forts to build and ‘cakes’ to bake, balls to kick around and attempt to catch and coconuts to hack into. And with Kaia directing the process with the urgent proddings of an assembly line tyrant, gazillions of crabs to stalk, chase and—with a bit of luck—catch.

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Coconut Killa

All of this topped off each early evening with mom and dad kicking back with a couple frosty adult beverages for prime sunset viewing. The sort of setting that would make a Corona advertising executive tear up at the possibilities.

All this while Kaia burns off the last of her day’s energy reserves in a beachside triathlon of running, jumping and impressive feats of coconut long distance throwing.

And as she does, somewhere behind us, a massive swath of Peru sits neglected. A giant stretch involving the sights and sounds of Peru’s Amazonian jungle and the majestic mountain peaks of the town of Huaraz to name but two major draws that just didn’t make the cut.

Maybe next time.

This time, however, almost eight months away from the water has made its point loud and clear. A

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Crab Hunters

point Swiss Wassi’s oceanfront setup at km 1228.5 along the Panamerican Highway drives home

with unequivocal clarity.

The point being that life really is better at the beach.

And it’s a reality we can live with. Very, very easily.

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