Friday, 14 November 2014

30/2014 Rosario Islands

Hi from Clare,                           Thursday 13th November

When we wrote ten days ago we were in Cartagena Colombia organizing a trip to the dentist and repairs to our AB dinghy which is still under warranty.

The dentist trip went well; we fronted up Tuesday without an appointment but armed with our Spanish-English translator. Fortunately we received help from a Spanish patient, a local lawyer who could speak fairly good English. He phoned his friend a retired English dentist on vacation and asked him to come to the surgery and between them they communicated my requirements to the Colombian dentist. I needed a porcelain front replaced which after thirteen years had cracked and partly fallen off. I was given preferential treatment and ushered into the surgery immediately. The cracked porcelain front was removed, impressions taken and a temporary fitted. The following afternoon the job was completed and for about one third of the Australian price. We were very impressed with the generous help we received and the efficiency of the dentist.

The bubbles in the seam is where the aluminium is corroding under the rubber
Sadly, not so much efficiency with the dinghy repair. We thought this would be easy as AB dinghies have an excellent reputation and are made here in Colombia. However it became complicated because Customs required the dinghy to be imported into Colombia. Importation enables the necessary paperwork for the dinghy to pass in and out of the factory which is a tax free zone. It was said that the paperwork should take two days but in fact it took eleven very frustrating days and "manyana" is alive and well. Eventually the dinghy was transported to the factory on Tuesday for an estimated four day repair. At this stage we think it will be returned next Wednesday which another eight days "manyana" still lives.

Scenes around Cartagena's modern city

We planned to go to Peru for a week and we spent endless time with the travel agents and broken English trying to organize the trip. But with the additional uncertainty of the dinghy repairs, it all became too difficult; South America will have to wait.

So we have moved fifteen miles away from Cartagena Port to the Rosario Islands. It is very peaceful and great to get back into clean 29.6 degree water. Andrew has been busy for the last two days cleaning the bottom of the boat. After installing the ultrasonic Anti-fouling device which supposedly prevents barnacles growing he is a bit underwhelmed by its performance. Granted the largest barnacles are the ones furthest away from the device but there are still many small barnacles everywhere.

So during the last week in Cartagena we have been planning our days around keeping cool. We are 10 degrees north of equator so it is hot and humid. We have had our tarpaulins up over the boat for both sun and rain protection. The humidity is such that we drip perspiration as soon as we are out of the breeze. I have been cooking dinner straight after breakfast to keep the heat out of the boat at night. Most afternoons we hide in an air conditioned shopping centre or café for a few hours and then we have a cold shower at the marina before coming back to the boat.
Kids and the pigeons in an old city park

Our friends on "Saraoni" have ventured onto The San Blas Islands which is reportedly very beautiful but currently pouring with rain. Keith on "Sadiqi" has been great company and we have enjoyed a few dinners in the cool of the cockpit on Eye Candy. Keith has helped Andrew with Clean Up programs for the computer and was hoping to leave for the San Blas this Friday but the Harbour Master is on holidays until Tuesday and so "Manyana" once again.

We will continue on to the San Blas Islands as soon as our dinghy is returned to the boat but for now I must away and practice my tennis shots with the fly swat.

Love Candy xx

At 6:54 PM12/11/2014 (utc) our position was 10°10.92'N 075°44.29'W

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