Thursday, February 25, 2016

Everything is Bueno

There is plenty of book reading and guitar picking going on these days as we wait for the elusive weather windows to open up. No one said this was a quick route to the Caribe and we anticipated some delays but what the hell Mother Nature?! Not saying we aren't entertained. We have company. SV Odin, our bar pals are also along for the Mother Nature Goes Schizo Tour. I feel for the Odin crew when we get the check at a restaurant or bar. I must be a bad (under the) influence. Good times.

So, what the hell are we doing? Waiting. Hanging out. The town, Cockburn Harbour has some very nice friendly and helpful people. The other day when Craig and I were walking to Customs (trying to find it) we had a lovely couple pull over and give us a ride. Pretty awesome of them as it kept us from getting close to the wild horses which don't seem to like me. Horses run wild and free in this town and they are kind of scary. I never got along with horses. When we left the Customs office we passed a group of ponies just hanging out on the corner. They got quiet as we got closer and they were eyeballing us. Kind of like a street gang just hangin loose and shooting the shit on the corner watching people go by. One horse was like, "What the fuck you looking at pal?" I turned away quickly but a moment later the horse leader was following us. Then the others took up behind him. "I'm talkin to you shorty! You got a problem?" We started walking quicker but they were closing. What the
"I don't like the look you were giving me asshole so what's your problem huh? Maybe I should like stomp it out of youz. Like a cock a la roche." Then all the other horses started laughing. We got a block away and they backed off. Craig was like, You staring at them? Well yes I was staring. They all looked so sad. I mean, why the long face?
Bad part of town I guess.

Looks like a crossing of the windward passage tomorrow morning. Crack of dawn. I wonder if Tony Orlando ever got up at the crack of Dawn? Sorry. That was uncalled for. You shouldn't read this blog it's getting filthy. We planned on leaving yesterday but the wind has been cranking lately. From the wrong direction too, but that seems to always happen. Can't wait to leave this section behind and start on the Hispaniola Tour. We were planning a while back to spend almost a month exploring the DR but now we are thinking we will just keep hopping. The goal is to get to Trini by June 1 and we are just going to keep on rolling. Hopefuly faster than we have been but I must say it has been fun. No worries taking it slow and easy. We get enough excitement living and travelling this way without knowingly heading into a bad situation. We are saving certain places for the ride back north. DR, the south side is one of those areas. Cat Island is another. Figuring the ride north will start i
n about
5 yrs. Puerto Rico might be a state by then and the DR will replace Florida in the number of US retirees. We will also have a flying car according to Popular Mechanics magazine. Seems that stupid rag publishes a flying car on their cover at least once a year. "Flying car a reality!" My ass. Anyone still get that stupid magazine? I miss Live On a Sailboat Like a Dirty Hippie magazine. It really changed our lives.

We plan on popping into a marina in PR to set a spell. That means we are going to take a break and chill, do some provisioning and boat work. Possibly a beer or two. I'm hoping we find some good NY style pizza. Been a while. I'm also running out of pants.

Wish us luck tomorrow. Looks to be a motor sail. We either get too much or nothing. My feeling was that we should leave this afternoon while there was still wind but it died a few hrs later and the waves are still up from the blow. Nothing worse than big waves and no wind. Lot's of banging and clanging to assault your ears and eat your brain. So we motor sail in light air. Oh well. Beats a sleigh ride through hell.

So anyway, here we are about to hit up another country only this time we do not speak the language. What could possibly go wrong?


Again, I apollochives about the spelling. Spellcheck is not something the Iridium company programmers have stumbled over yet.

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Tuesday, February 23, 2016


Yesterday afternoon we had a route planning session at the local bar in town. We met a sailor who had been around the world on his HR and was ready to call it quits. Sad to hear him talk of this but he was genuinely happy to be giving it up after 12 years of cruising the world. He is having his boat shipped back to Australia instead of sailing it there. That's a good long time to sail. I would be immensely happy to acheive that time and in no way will we be cruising the world. I will be happy just to hang out in the Islands for a few years. Nice guy, we wish him well.

The planning session went sort of like this, "When you leaving?" Wednesday sounds good. "OK, Wednesday it is. Beer?" Sure.

So Wednesday morning we leave for the DR. Simple as that. There is a little more wind and waves on Wed vs Thurs but Thursday and Friday shows little if any wind. Some wind is nice even if we are motorsailing. Hate to hear the sails banging all the way down there. We thought about continuing on to PR with the same window but we would have to motor the whole way in dead air and waves. That's a lot of motoring. When we jump the Mona I would like to do it from Samana. So off to Luperon we go tomorrow.

I was talking to the world sailor we met and I mentioned that when things break on a boat it happens in three's. He agreed. Pretty weird but true. Dude said it happened to him all the time in the 12 yrs he's been out here. So first we broke a block on the topping lift, then the head pump stopped working, and the third...
Deb's iPad went belly up. Our primary mode of navigation for the Bahamas has a serious problem. The screen looks like an old black and white TV with a horizontal hold problem. For the younger folks that means the screen went white and gray and is flickering. Very srcrewy. To say Deb was upset in an understatement. We still have the Raymarine chartplotter with Navionics and a handheld Garmin with the caribbean charts. We also have the NV paper charts of the whole area. We just have to navigate through one little stretch of the bahamas and we will be good to go. Somewhere either in the DR or PR Debra will get her tablet fixed of buy a new one.

We are also switching to a Bluetooth GPS for the tablets to eliminate any physical connection. Corrosion comes in fast. These tablets were not meant for this environment and even encased they will still corrode. With the Bluetooth GPS we can then use both the iPad and the Droid ready tablets for navigation.

Let's hope all this crap ends at three. We still have a long way to go but now we are leaving some of the remote areas and getting to places with goods and services. This will be a nice change from the bare bones Bahamas but I bet after after a few years of the Caribe we may long for the solitude of the Bahamas.


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