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Date: 01 Oct 2010 00:54:00
Title: Isla Pinos or perhaps just an Isla rant 8:59.73N 77:45.51W

Isla Pinos
 
Isla Pinos is visable from the Columbian border and is only round the corner from Mulutupu, it's an island in the shape of a whale and had been on our radar as a landfall from the beginning.  We knew Bonaire had walked up to the top of the whale and we aimed to do the same thing.  It's another pretty Island but most is farmland and the village is very small and doesn't feel over populated like other islands.  But like all the other Islands it seems to be over loaded with children.  
    We are greated by a old gentle man who speaks relativley good English.  Horracio seemed fantastic, he took us to the Silas and translated for us, we paid our dues but needed change,  some thing that never appeared from Mr Horracio's pocket but he took us to his home and showed us his newly built home, made of breeze blocks,  his daughter who worked in Panama, cleaning or washing dishes, had paid for it.  We are asked to take and print a picture of it.  This helpful old gentleman was seemingly a little more whily,  the requests for stuff kept on coming and coming.  He had said he would like to take us for a tour of the island which he duely did only to request large sums for cash at the end. When we first met Mr Horracio he showed us a book he kept of visiting yachts and kind comments they had all written,  we recognised quite a few of the more recent boats, having met them in Columbia.   So, felling very warm about the place Colin filled in a glowing appreciation of the island.  But, we felt at the end of our trip we would not have written such kind words.  Whily old bugger!

We returned to the boat having arranged to walk around the island the following morning, which allowed us to experience some early night wildlife.  The children and I were very excited to see our first firefly, but then we called it a day soon after a hideous bout of no-see-ums. Colin stood his ground only to be totally freeked out by other natural wonders.  It was a dark quiet night, and there was no moon to speak of.  Sitting up in the bows for a moments' contemplation I suddenly saw a flash under the water. Then another, then another.  Then all around the boat, and under the water were distinct lasting flashes, like fireflies, but underwater.  It was a very erie feeling not
knowing whatt was going on - jellyfish, worms, crabs.  Who knows.    But to make the whole spooky experience worst an enoumous unidentifiable bug flew down which nearly scared me out of my pants, if I had been wearing any.  But it was and this time I retreated inside firmly closing the door behind me. We saw the phenomenon again when we returned with grandparent, we''ve asked lots of people, but not had a really plausible answer.
    
 
 KNX hat in unlikely position.  Captions on a postcard please.
Another rather odd experience was buying a mola,  I have decided that I am now good to buy 1 mola from each island,  a kind of kuna tax.  But here the lady who I bought from was super concerned that I didn't tell anyone that I had given her money, Her son mentioned something about handcuffs and prison, whilst it didn't seem that Mr Horracio was sharing his ill-gotten gains with the rest of the islanders  we got the strongest of suspicions that is was a very tightly controled island and all income had to be taxed.  Colin eventually told Mr H he should be careful not to ask for too much as it was going to ruin the islands reputation.  Every suggestion of us doing something for the village Mr H wanted the materials for himself, not the sharing caring type.
    
 "Hey, ladies..!"      "Oh, Alloha"

Dispite all our moans and groans  about Mr H, the island is very pretty the only problem like many of the other islands is the amount of rubbish collecting along the coast line.  We have become increasingly horrified by the amount of plastic bottles, and flip flops ending up on the beaches. about 3/4 of the way around the island we began to count the amount of shoes we saw,  by the time we got back to the village we had seen 45,  which suggests that there must have been in the region of 200 shoes washed up on this small island,  and that isn't accounting for the other plastic. Something has to be done about it and whilst we all where our crocs and Flip-flops when they are done with we are left with more plastic,  I am absolutley sure competitions could be organised for folk in these villages to turn the rubbish into something useful like roof tiles etc etc but they need to be heavily incentified.   After much rumination about this increasing problem,  a problem that is set to threaten the beauty of this very special part of the world, we think we can understand why it's happening.  Until relatively recently these islands and villages were far more self sufficient, with the exception of tradeboats coming to collect coconut and bananas,  the islands eat what they produced of farmed or caught in the sea,  and with all natural vegitation it's not an issue to dispose of the packaging.  Now however with an increase of shops,  most compound has a
tenda sign out side it .  All selling Soda, Bad tinned fish (very odd), Rice or chicken soup all of which come in plastic of tinned packages and will later end up in the water and then washed up on the coast. It all just a learning thing that the disposal of plastic needs to be burned of buried, the status quo really upsets
us all.
 
The bugs of the night before and our ill feelings towards Mr H we decided to pull up the hook and head as far at we can in order to hit Mamitupu as early a possible the following day.

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