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Date: 09 Mar 2012 01:53:30
Title: Rain, rain, rain

Lat 09:20.06N
Long 082.14:48W

Well it's been a very wet few days here in the marina at Bocas. We definitely had the best of the weather in the first few days and since Monday it has been tropical shower after tropical shower. Quite frustrating when you're trying to work outside on the boat. Still we have focused on the inside and achieved a lot (note this is the Royal version of the word "we" - really it's all Archie!). We have had a mechanic come and service our engine, drain out all the fuel, filter it and put it back, change all the filters and check various other things. "We" have also fixed both heads without getting poo everywhere (my biggest boat related fear!) and also the water maker which it turns out has never been used.

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Mystic in Bocas marina The driving rain during a tropical shower

We've also spent a serious amount of dollar this week, and I'm just waiting for the ATM to laugh at us when we ask for yet another $500. This week's purchases include a dinghy, a 15hp Yamaha outboard, a dive BCD for Jo, about 600 feet of rope, a decent fishing rod for all the Tuna and Wahoo that Archie is of course going to catch, some fishing lures, and a boat hook. We've also both been up the mast which was a new experience for Jo! Quite fun and felt pretty safe in the marina; I'm sure going up there whilst at sea would be a very different story. All the rigging looks good as expected for such a lightly used boat. However, unfortunately we also found a pesky pin sticking out of one of the shrouds has caused a rip in our knackered genoa (headsail) that must have happened at the weekend. We have a brand new sail being made but we won't get it until we get to Shelter Bay so we had to get this repaired. Luckily the very talented but extremely busy sailmaker, Lobo, prefers Brits to Yanks and has managed to fit us in before we leave for Shelter Bay this Sunday. It is being re-cut so will be smaller but he says the rest of the sail apart from the Sunbrella on the leach and foot is fairly good and should definitely see us through to Aus. You can see the difference before and after the sail was cut below.

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Jo up the mast! Of course Archie had to go higher! Our headsail pre-cut After the cut

Everyone is waiting for the weather at the moment. There is a really nice family that are fixing up their friend's catamaran at about the same rate of us with plans to leave early next week and go north. We also met some Aussies on a boat called Brio who are heading to Shelter Bay also, hauling out and then heading back to Aus. So we will keep bumping into them along the way I'm sure. Unfortunately conditions out of the heads are far from favourable to going anywhere at the moment. At the exit of the bay, you can see breaking waves rolling into the bay, and while it's doing that, no one is going anywhere. The seas are currently at least 14ft swell out there at the moment so we're not keen! It's meant to die down tomorrow though, and the swell should calm down by Sunday, so that is our planned leaving day. Only 6-8 foot swell - yippeee!? I am fully prepared to be vomiting the whole way. As long as it's only for 24hrs I reckon I can cope.

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Loving the blue mirrored lenses! The surfers are having a good time - no good for sailing! Bocas town

We went for a bit of a sunset cruise tonight to check out the breaking waves, and our windlass that was working fine at the weekend has decided not to play ball. Will have to have a look tomorrow (add it to the list...). We saw a dolphin today though so maybe it's all ying-yang. It came within 3 feet of our dinghy. So cool to see so close.

Happy Birthday Amy!

Lots of love A&J xx




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