Guess where we are!

Sun 21 Nov 2010 22:11
08:56.244N 079:33.348W
After 2500 miles we finally made it to the Panama Canal at 5.00 pm on Friday 19th November.   All pretty exhausted and sailed out but safe and happy to all be in one piece after such a long trip.
Amazingly we have been on the road for 5 months through some good times and some bad times.  We spend Thursday night in a little cove in the Las Perlas Islands.  Charts and guide showed a nice clear anchorage so we were a little surprised to wake up in the middle of the night to find jagged rocks all around us after the tide had dropped 10 ft or so and a squall came through.  Goes to show shouldn't get complacent and it was a lucky escape.
Weather on Friday was beautiful and an easy sail into Balboa where we are moored under the Bridge of the Americas at the entrance to the Canal.  Crazy busy here and we are all shell shocked with people, noise, traffic and shops.   After so many weeks of remote locations it took a day or so to adjust.
Panama so far is great, pleasent people and great services from what we have seen so far.  All highly civilized.  The boat has been measured for the transit and we have hired a british agent who is more undercover than James Bond and we are yet to find him in person.  
We should have a transit date allocated soon and we are a little nervous as we are surrounded by some really massive shipping at very close quarters. It is an amazing and intimidating place to be in a small boat, as we are mored about 400 yards from the main channel and 30 meters from the pilot station.   For anyone interested there is a web cam at the Miraflores locks where you would be able to see us going through once we have a time and date if you log on to the Panama Canal website.  
We are just trying to get some photos together of the Panama Pacific trip so far and we will try to get them posted tonight.
All very surreal actually being here but all very excited specially with the benefit of food and water from a surprisingly well stock supermarket, think guiness, tetley tea and Inka Kola for the peruvian crew!
Will let you know the date when we know  it!
Thank you all for your support so far to this important part of the journey.  We really appreciate it
Paul and the crew....