We wish you all a very Merry Christmas and may the good times and treasures of the present become the golden memories of tomorrow.
Wishing you lot of love, joy, good health and happiness for the New Year.
Sid and Manuela
Let me catch you up on our trip to Puerto Rico:
We had barely time to square our boat away before leaving on Scirocco. Joe needed us to help him get Scirocco ready for the trip to
We were a crew of 5 the owner and another couple Udo and Melanie who actually are the previous owners. Poor Melanie was sick the entire trip to
Sail from Puerto La Cruz to Isla Balanquilla new GPS did not work as it was hooked onto the old antenna. Sid had suspected that and brought our handheld, good thinking.
Sid was doing all the navigation which caused a lot of frustration for him Joe and Udo did not trust him and would question the course he had charted, and they would argue. The entrance to the anchorage in Christianstead is quite confusing and there are too many red and green buoys, and then stress level went up, the depth was only at 8 feet and the keel was at 7 ½. Just as we anchored the engine made awful noises and had to be turned off manually. Sid had his hands full in the 3 days we were in
Then of course poor Melanie spent the first day at the hospital with an IV in her arm and doctor said her illness was from contaminated water.
Since it was a weekend we only could check in via phone but had to visit the office the following day, which Joe forgot to do. Except for Sid and Joe we jumped ship and walked through the beautiful alleys of Christianstead with wonderful galleries and stores, not to mention a fun board walk with yummy restaurants. One ocean front bar caters to cruisers. That’s where we caught up with Butch on Tropic Bird and Cathy on Chill and finally the last afternoon Sid managed to join us for some fun.
The sail to Culebra was great and uneventful until we arrived at the channel marker to our anchorage were Sid’s navigation skills were questioned again and the suggested channel was ignored, poor Sid. All I can say about this is that I know now how boats end up on reefs, scary.
Udo, Melanie and I ventured off through the streets of the little town on Culebra, while Sid was fixing this and that again.
We left early the next morning for Sapodilla which was half way to
Our last leg to
Prior to leaving Puerto La Cruz we questioned Joe why he chose Salinas and told him that he would not like it there, so did other cruising friends and he did hate it. Joe is a very difficult person to be around and we really wanted to jump ship, but just didn’t have in our hearts to just leave Joe here in a place he hated and offered to help him get the boat to Fajardo, where he had stayed for several years. We left the following day for another two day trip. Udo and Melanie parted here and went on a sightseeing trip before fliying home. We motored the 45 miles in two days and were glad for this trip to be over. We finally were able to buy a ticket back to
The two days we had left in
On our last day we took Joe out for an early dinner at a great Mexican restaurant then drove to the airport for our flight to
It was nice to see the friendly faces of Dale and Sandy “Snow White” as they picked us up at the airport. It was already late in the evening and despite it we talked way into the night to catch up. Their friend Karl from
Sid and I drive drove her back to the airport but before she left us she took us on a flight over the Keys. That was so kewl we circled many times around
After that fun weekend the shopping started, we had a huge list and thanks to Dale and Sandy for lending us one of their cars it was easy getting around. I tell you though there is a lot of driving to do in the Keys, everything is far apart. We shopped pretty much everything on the list plus some stuff not on the list and twice had to go back to the Thrift store to buy an extra suite cases.
Just before we left
Next to shopping and visiting we had a great time with Dale and Sandy. Early mornings we exercised to a Denis Austin tape, (except for Sid) and then went for an hour or so walk through the neighborhood. What a beautiful place and you should see their enormous house, just beautiful. In his yard Dale built a cute pond with 2 box fish, a nice size grouper, lady fish and get this at least 20 good size lobsters. I had fun watching them. Best time was just before sunrise or sunset as they walked in line behind each other through the pond, wow. Dale and Sandy just finish building their new house, oh man, what an incredibly awesome house. You should see the kitchen, it’s enormous with an elegant built in marble table seating at least 8 people. The master bathroom took my breath away. The shower and toilette are each surrounded by the most beautifully etched glass wall that was curved. The etching was an incredible underwater scene. The house also comes with a wonderful view over the entrance to the canals in their neighborhood and the
We felt really bad that our visit was so extended but the 10 days went by fast and on our last night the yearly Christmas Boat Parade was held and we enjoyed watching it from their friends resort and met many of their friends.
We had a wonderful time and Dale and Sandy were the most gracious hosts. Dale and Sandy we can’t thank you enough.
When we finally arrived at the Avior counter there was not one passenger checking in. Really strange but then maybe we were just too early. But then again we were told that they were booked solid for the months of December, after all we had bought the last two tickets. When we finally sat in the plane and the doors locked we were dumb founded, there were only 20 passsenger in the plane, go figure!
Jim picked us up but first we had a little tail gate party at the airport as he had ice, beer, rum and coke ready for us. We had fun in the parking lot for quite a while until the mosquitoes started to eat us. It felt so good to step on
We have a few varnishing and sewing projects to do then we also will leave this beautiful country for good. We will miss all our Venezuelan friends and hope that they will be able to live a good life as Chavez is taking more and more away from them including freedom. Our heart goes out to them.
By the way I posted the first part of our Grenadine adventure with film and photo stories. Don't miss the turtle film. To view go to or click link: http://turtle-express32.blogspot.com/
and scroll to bottom of report. Enjoy!