Friday 15 January 2016

Many Things To Do...

Unfortunately after leaving the Rio Dulce we found that the stitching around our trampolines, 
and around the zips on the windscreen of the clears was disappearing.
We were recommended Roman a sail maker, at Linton Harbour.
He took away our trampolines, windscreen and sides, returning them within a week.
Roman did a wonderful job for us!

Our Rose without her "windscreen" & "sides"

We headed to Colon on the Chicken bus to get a new phone 
(sadly the iPhone didn't like going for a swim with me!)
Inside the Chicken bus was a display of croquet edged doily

Once our trampolines were back, we upanchored and headed to Portobello.
Though founded in 1597, legend has it that Christopher Columbus 
originally named the port "Puerto Bello", meaning "Beautiful Port" in 1502.
A sleepy town of around 3000, that has many day tourists to visit the church with the black Jesus.

Some local "entrepreneurs" dress up on the weekend when there is a lot of traffic
They prance about in the middle of the street stopping traffic, until they get a "tip" to let you passed

We took our liferaft ashore, then by taxi to Colon to get serviced.  
We sincerely hope this is the only time the liferaft needs to be off Our Rose!

The ruins have a specular view of the harbour

We headed to Shelter Bay Marina.
The ad-measurer came and we were then measured and ready to be booked to transit the canal.
Due to the World Arc arriving at the same time as us, we knew there would be a delay,
however, there were many days of provisioning to achieve, so that was just fine.

With this not only being one of the longest passage we will possible do, 
it is also very expensive in the French Polynesia, so we are trying to fit as much as possible.

Everything has to be loaded by the two of us into a van, then onto trolleys are the marina,
then down to Our Rose and lifted on, the from there into the cockpit, then "without cardboard" into the boat ready to put away.  It really is a pretty big mission!

It was great though, Reys Supermarket would deliver me back to the marina with groceries if spending over $300.  This was achieved many times!

Shelter Bay Marina is about 45 minutes from the stores, so they offer a van ride in.
Crossing the canal a couple of times, you also cross the "new" canal that is purported to open by June.  This new canal will hold the supertankers, which presently can't fit.
This is a view out of the van window of the building of the new canal

The time had finally come and we went into Panama City to meet Dean.
On arrival back to Our Rose provisioning from New Zealand arrived - yahooooooo

Beautiful placements above sent by Chris & Michael
and this "Absolutely Gorgeous" bag (and the necessary berocca) sent by Lynnette

The next morning Dean was put to work, fixing the grill of the oven
with the part we had sent to him in New Zealand, and cleaning the top inside...
Welcome to Our Rose Deano!

Monday 4 January 2016

San Blas - Guna Yula

Three nights at sea took us from San Andreas
to the lovely San Blas Islands (Panama) actual name “Guna Yula”

They are made up of 340 islands, which are home to the Guna Indians.
There are around 55000 Gunas 
(about 10% of what they were before the invasion of the Spanish Conquistadors)

It is a Matrilineal society – the women control the money
and the husbands move into the womens family compound.

We arrived 6 days before our guests from New Zealand were due. 
Sarah (a 2nd  cousin of Richards & her husband) Steven. 
It was lovely having them aboard Our Rose for just on 2 weeks

 We were also thrilled to catch up with Eileen and Peter from Appleseeds – we first met in Cuba,
and Lynne and Eric from Amarula,
who we first met in Petite Martinique.

Christmas Day started with breakfast, bubbly and presents…

With Richard receiving all the way from Hils & Doug in NZ a toy chainsaw!  

Along with lots of other very thoughtful gifts from Sarah & Steven 
and of course our presents from Santa Claus!

Late lunch begun with drinks and nibbles on the foredeck with Eileen, Peter and their son from Canada Matt, Lynne & Eric and the four of us

We then moved onto our sitdown lunch

Smoked Crayfish, Roast Turkey, Roast Pork, lots of Salads etc,
(delivery of live crayfish by a Kuna, we are not allowed to dive in San Blas)

followed by my homemade Christmas Mince Tarts and Christmas Cake.
It was a fun day with everyone!

New Years eve took us to another anchorage 
(where we started with Moet that Sarah and Steven had brought)

 and enjoyed the end of 2015 into 2016
with Appleseeds, Amarula and Michelle, Alex, Noah & Fern from Jade

Plenty of alcohol refreshments that night
Finishing on Our Rose with (definitely not needed) Rum

The women make money selling “molas”.  
These beautiful appliqué are intricately made by sewing and cutting different layers of colorful cloth.

Heading off with some other cruisers snorkeling

At a local village we saw this lovely Tucan...

Having a drink ashore on Sarah and Stevens last night