Archie’s first day in Zihuatanejo


We’ve done it, we’ve moved to the beach for Archie Make-a-Wish summer! We’re now in Zihuatanejo, and so far, Archie loves it. My camera is still packed, so you’ll have to take my word for it.

First off, the bipeds all feel like we’re back in Thailand. The heat, the humidity, the lush foliage. In central Mexico, Scout and I would get bloody noses all the time (like, every day),  because it’s so arid. This is a big improvement. And best of all, the humidity makes me look 29 again (cough)! Win win.

After a decent sleep-in and a few espressos up on the mirador (during which Archie, thankfully, did not get electrocuted by the electric fence designed to “send ’em to the hospital”), we drove to the little shopping area (about 5 min away) for brekkie at the Pancake House. No, it’s not Mexican, it sounds totally gringo, I get it, but I don’t care, it’s really good. They make pretty decent pancakes and have outside tables for Archie. It’s low-season now, so lots of tables were open. Mark, Scout and I inhaled pancakes and waffles with fresh berries, while Archie terrified locals by barking and lunging after pigeons. Fortunately he was tied to a bench that was bolted into the ground, so we avoided any mortifying Marley-and-me type incidents involving Archie dragging a screeching metal bench along the sidewalk.

Afterward we strolled to Playa Principal, the harbor area, to see what the local fisherman had in their ice chests. Archie hung out on the promenade with Mark and Scout, while I checked out the fresh-off-the-boat fish. Today’s catch included several varieties of smallish fish (I don’t remember what kinds), still-flopping red snapper, and glistening fresh tuna. I bought half a kilo of the tuna for 40 pesos, which works out to about $6.15 USD per kilo or about  $2.75 per pound. Fortunately Archie was so focused on the ocean, he didn’t notice the squirrel in the branches above his head, and we were able to make a clean getaway afterward. Close call.

After a quick stop at the mercado for produce (fresh tuna requires mango salsa, right?), it was off to Playa Ropa, one of the local beaches. No one swims at Playa Principal…too many boats in the water and it isn’t clean. But the water is beautiful at Ropa. Once we parked the car, Archie dragged me past the ridiculous  new “No Dogs” sign and onto the beach. We dumped our clothes under a palapa and bolted toward the water.

Archie loves swimming more than hamburgers, rats, and belly scratches combined. Mark and I took turns throwing sticks into the surf him, while Scout swam in the warm water. A pair of small fins trailed her in the water. I asked her to get closer and see if it was a baby shark, but she refused. Jeesh!

Archie played fetch for ages and then, when his stick disintegrated, he body surfed for a while. Sometimes he did it on his own; other times I chucked him in the surf and watched him go. Every time emerged from the surf with a big silly grin on his face. Eventually he wanted a new stick  but he couldn’t find one. I noticed a sailfish skull on the beach, so  I ripped off the bill and gave it to my boy, who was so excited he zoomed around and around with the stinky thing in his mouth. Periodically he’d stop to roll on it, then he’d snatch it up again and run some more. It smelled! He smelled! Heaven!!!

Fun is fun, but eventually we had to go and get some work done. I dunked Archie in the water to rinse the sand of him, and off we headed. It’s so humid here, his smooth coat fluffed out and, by the time we got home, he looked like a little sheep.

So that was the first half of our first day. Later, around 7, we went back again, and that time Archie ingested so much seawater that he yorked it all up at home. Who cares, I love my dog, and he is happy! The whole family adores Zihuatanejo, and we are so grateful to be here.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 CarolB May 8, 2014 at 9:42 am

What a lovely day for Archie I am taking my dogs to the beach in Scotland but I won’t be swimming in the water with them …….. it’s still freezing cold here!


2 Renee May 8, 2014 at 10:00 am

The water may be colder, but Scotland sure is gorgeous! I visited in my 20s and would love to get back there for some hiking. 🙂


3 Clelie May 8, 2014 at 10:34 am

Yay, arrived at the beach. Looking forward to pics, but this all sounds just what you all need. (I shall look you up on the map.)


4 Mark May 10, 2014 at 10:03 am

Clelie, have you seen the movie “Shawshank Redemption?”


5 Alex May 8, 2014 at 11:09 am

So happy for your little Fam, all except the barfing. Sounds like the perfect choice.


6 Karen May 8, 2014 at 6:07 pm

Glad you found a beach that will work for you all. Sad we didn’t get to actually say “See You Later” in person. We made it to Portland OR for now, rain of course, and soon to head up to BC. May our paths cross again, friends.


7 Cat May 9, 2014 at 9:30 am

Wish I could be there with my Doggin to splash around in the waves with you. I don’t know if he would take to the water like Archie has, but I can just picture them running up and down the beach together and rolling in stinky stuff. Haha!

P.S. I hope you have a great Mother’s Day Renee!!! 🙂


8 John Garvin May 10, 2014 at 9:08 am

Renee great post. Please keep them coming. We love Zihua and as you know our concern is the heat and humidity, especially in the hottest months. We would also consider Manzanillo as some homes for rent with pool and a reasonable price. Where you are is soooo different than Ajijic and area.

Curious why you left Morelia for coast.

Happy Mother’s Day


9 Renee May 10, 2014 at 12:32 pm

Thanks, John! Yes, we lived in Chapala before going to Morelia. To us the weather seemed similar in both places, and obviously much dryer than here. Actually it was too dry for my daughter and me…we used to get bloody noses al the time. As for Morelia, we left for two reasons. For one thing, we’re exploring Mexico and trying to see different parts of the country, but more specifically we left because our dog was diagnosed with terminal oral cancer. Instead of making him suffer through chemotherapy, which is unlikely to extend his life much anyway, we decided to bring him to his favorite place—the beach—where he can spend his remaining days in joy and happiness.


10 Tricia May 11, 2014 at 5:55 pm

I love that Archie gets a great beach visit, you’re a good mom (with a good family!) I look forward to some epic Archie pics over the next few months!


11 Renee May 11, 2014 at 10:41 pm

Thanks, Tricia. I love my boy. 🙂


12 saff and Rass May 13, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Hey you guys. Sounds like a great start in your new digs. We heard through the grapevine you were heading to the beach but assumed maybe Manzanillo . Glad you found your place. So things aren’t quite working for us in Guada so its time for us to put our traveling shoes back on. We are going to Perico for a bit before we head over to the Yucatan Peninsula just in time for hurricane season. LOL, should be fun, can’t wait to get back to the beach. If you get tired of your beach come join us at ours. 🙂 We’re so glad to hear you all are enjoying yourselves with Archie. BTW, Mico is almost the same size as Archie now, they have the exact same body shape and almost the same attitude. Shemesh is great as usual. Hope our travels overlap again one day.


13 Renee May 13, 2014 at 2:17 pm

So good to hear from you guys! What’s going on on Guad? Write us! And send pix of Mico! 🙂


14 Molly May 20, 2014 at 9:37 pm

Yay! Sounds heavenly and I second one of the comments above – post some beach pics! Glad all is well and Archie loving life.


15 Renee May 26, 2014 at 11:50 am

Thanks so much, Molly. xoxoxo


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