Sat 27 Oct 2007 00:55
Just a news update, I havn't looked at any possible inmail for a couple of days, but will do so tomorrow: hopefully at the internet site at the Club Nautico. That's where the sailors congregate here in Cartagena. It's ten pounds a week to use their facilities and their safe dinghy dock: a steal if you will excuse the pun. Cheap food in their bar, and plenty of good eating places nearby, so I shall not starve.
We left the five bays area, part of the Tayrona National Park, a few days ago, and went to an anchorage off a Colombian Holiday Resort called Rodadero. Next day we crossed the Mouth of the River Magdalena: a remarkable event with miles and miles of brown river water with floating vegitation, tree trunks, and other debris. Another boat, possible appropriately named the Jedi, claimed to have seen a car floating out to sea, and two dead cows. If you look at the Map you can see that this is some river, falling off the Andes, just like the Amazon.Then spent two nights at an unmarked inlet near Punta Hermosa. Protected from all but the rare westerly winds, which is exactly what we got served up: spent a rocky night not far from a lee shore and left at 4am for a dash down the coast to Cartagena. Turned out to be the heaviest days rainfall of the year. There was not a bad wind, but shallow water, and a nasty short sea which was very uncomfortable. The thing about rain at sea is that you can't see. The North entrance to Cartagena is through the Boca Grande: actually a small gap in an underwater sea wall about 50 feet wide and 10 feet deep. Marked by two bouys, but we had less than 100 metres of visibility. GPS is a real miracle however, and up they loomed out of the mist right in front of us. It was a very exhausting day, and slept well last night. Today taken up with 'Clearing In': customs and immigration. This is expensive, and is done through a middle man, an agent, who seem to do sweet all for his money. A lot of yachts here: some have been here for years, a few are travelling east to the Caribbean Islands, but some, like us, are headed for Panama, the San Blas islands, and then the Canal. Everyone says that the old town is magic, so looking forward to seeing it perhaps tomorrow: there is also the Colombian Museum of Modern Art: I'm a bit of an addict. Havn't been mugged yet, touch wood, and a really good supermarket just down the road. Had a lunchtime beer with a South African, so learned the bad news to his considerable delight!!
Health update. Huge blister on thumb from fishing reel trying to stop a fish running away with all my line (failed). blocked right inner ear after filling my sinuses with sea water in Venezuela, malerone preventing malaria so far!! Small blister on toe from my Jack Sparrows: exellent on the boat, not so good for sight seeing (These are my 'Crocs', Hannah chose me the badge).
Boat going well, Dinghy outboard playing up yet again however, may have to get a new one in Panama.
More next week, Hope all is well with the rest of the world.