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Date: 21 Mar 2012 04:28:28
Title: The Princess and the Pee

Lat 09:22.08N
Lon 079:57.07W

Well, since we last updated the blog, we have been putting in some hard graft on this little ship. We have given her 3 coats of anti-foul paint, changed 3 seacocks and raised the waterline to further prevent little sea critters attaching themselves to the boat for the ride to Oz, and again had some "fun" with crusty 3 way valves in the heads! There have been tears, tantrums and possibly even a shout of the dreaded P word! I don't think I'd ever have described myself as a "Princess", but when that damn 3rd pipe just wouldn't go back into the 3-way valve, I was covered in someone else's 3 year old excrement and had my head in a tiny cupboard that smells of wee, all in 33 degrees heat, ok, ok I might have thrown a little tantrum and been fully deserving of the dreaded P word. I'll take that. If I was comfortable in such situations I wouldn't be human. Or at least female and human.

Ok, no more toilet talk I promise! We have also been into Colon (oops does that count as toilet talk?!) and found our way around the shops, as well as taken the bus to Panama City where we left the majority of our luggage before we flew to Bocas. Colon is a pretty strange place. The old town is full of beautiful old colonial style buildings, that are now completely run down, half empty, with bars across the windows and dodgy looking characters lurking around the corners. Some people seem friendly enough but everyone is trying to make a buck or two. In the main town of Colon, it's not recommended to walk more than 1 block - if you're going further you should take a taxi. I thought that was just for us gringo's, but apparently it's the same for the locals (well that was according to some fellow who drove a gold pick up truck, wore Oakley sunnies and carried an iphone - some people might as well walk around with a target on their back.) The marina has a free bus into the shopping malls which are safe, and we are planning to do our first provisioning shop tomorrow. Mike and Sammy, you will be distraught to know that the infamous Megadepot has closed it's doors in Colon, and has semi-merged into Super 99 next door so we are yet to experience the wonder! Maybe there's one in PC?

We met a few boats of really nice people all travelling to Aus in this last week, but unfortunately they have now all gone through the canal to Panama city. We hope to catch them up but need to make some new friends here! It's difficult being on the hard as people don't really walk past your boat and say hi, but we will hopefully get Mystic splashed back into the water on Thursday and start being social again! I have been feeling a little homesick in these last few days, which is strange for me as seeing as I've lived away from home for the last 20 years it seems weird to get homesick now! I think with all the work to do and the never-ending jobs, plus the lack of social network, the magnitude of what we are doing might have just sunk in! Anyway, fine really. (Macca; I can hear you saying "Man up Jo") Looking forward to Dad and Jamie coming out in a few weeks!

We think we may have had a big win this evening, when a German guy knocked on our boat and said he has a brand new spinnaker pole for a 42ft boat to sell! Archie nearly leapt the 3m down off the boat in all his excitement - I think we may have shown our hand in terms of how desperate we are, and have zero bargaining power now but we don't care - a real live spinnaker pole after hours and hours of internet research, calling Aluminium suppliers in Panama and considering spending $1500 getting one shipped from the US, is like gold out here! Fingers crossed for tomorrow when we can see it.

Righto, time for bed.

A&J xx

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