Ole Returns With Boat Parts

Marina Carenero
Bocas del Toro, Panama

Ole got home this morning at about 9:00, with something on the order of 75 pounds of luggage, including boat parts, charts, books, dvds and mail from home. It’s quite the hop, requiring travel from Orlando through Miami to Panama City, then an overnight, transfer to a smaller airport, and a puddle jumper into Bocas. Even so, it’s not quite as adventurous as the 7 hour bus ride to Guatemala City! It sure was great to have him back – it gets lonely without him! [Read more…]

Exploring Santa Catalina, Providencia

At Anchor, Catalina Harbor, Providencia

We’ve been here a week, and three days of it were “boat bound,” due to some pretty brisk winds that threatened to drag us (again). Friday evening, after a great day of scootering around the island, we went over to Attitude for happy hour. As soon as we stepped aboard, Neil and Dale (s/v Orangi) pointed and shouted simultaneously “You’re dragging!” which prompted a hasty three-man rescue attempt to try to prevent Emma Jo from blowing into Attitude. Cathy, Dillis and I sat and enjoyed the show, but the wind continued upwards of 20-30 knots through Monday and we didn’t’ feel comfortable leaving the boat to go into town.

Ole did make it to town yesterday morning, though, to pick up the repaired heat exchanger for the port engine. Cost was 200,000 pesos (more or less $100), and the leak was small – the repairman only had to plug about 3 of the little tubes. That was the good news. [Read more…]

All Fixed Up, Ready to Go!

Oceanside Marina
Key West, Florida

Hooray! The new transmissions are in, the engines are perfectly aligned, and we’re ready for the weather to cooperate so we can be on our way! All that’s left to do in the engine room is to paint some of the bolts and connections, de-grease the diamond plate, and put stuff away. Ole worked like a stevedore to get it all done.

Mark the Mechanic

Mark DeJong of Marine Diesel of the Florida Keys was fabulous. His staff are knowledgeable, fast, and courteous. And besides, he looks like somebody from ZZ Top. We would highly recommend him for any work in the keys – he works on about 20 boats a month, and he’s a straight-up guy. [Read more…]

More on the Deceased Transmissions

The saga of the deceased transmission continues…

After moving heaven and earth to wire money to American Diesel for “next day shipping,” the transmissions were to have been sent Thursday, February 1. Ole called to verify they had been shipped, and was told that “the freight forwarder did not feel like driving 80 miles to pick up just two transmissions, and besides, they were short on drivers.” We were assured they would indeed be shipped on Friday. A call Friday afternoon verified that the freight forwarder had, indeed, picked them up on Friday, but wouldn’t be actually shipping them until Monday.

There was much swearing in Norwegian. [Read more…]

Plans Change…

Safe Harbor Marina
Key West, Florida

So, how did we end up here after a week? Why aren’t we in Mexico somewhere?

It all started at noon on Sunday, January 21. With a fresh 15-20 knot wind from the east northeast, we set out from Bayside, with all crew aboard, excitement and anticipation driving us up to the flybridge to celebrate Miami in the rear view mirror. The cats, less excited and anticipatory, were driven to their usual cruising location.

It was beautiful — sunny, about 80 degrees, plenty of boats out and about. We left via Biscayne Bay and Stiltsville escorted for a short while by a dolphin, heading for Hawk Channel and our first stop, Key West. Exiting Biscayne Bay was rather exciting, with seas at 4-6 ft and the wind freshening as we entered open ocean, making for interesting hand steering. Once we got the autopilot sorted out and put ourselves on our plotted course, we took the seas on our port beam for several hours. Word to the wise — seasick prevention starts at the dock — not when you are already feeling woozy. God bless Lise for stocking the abundance of ginger remedies, from home-made biscotti, to tea, to non-drowsy Dramamine. [Read more…]