Thursday March 18th 1145 Local Time 1645
Hello again everyone. When I last blogged we were
just coming into the traffic to enter the Panama Canal breakwater. Seven
days have passed since then and we have not made much progress. Our dates have
been Monday, Tuesday, Friday and the latest is Saturday 20th. These dates
however are not dates issued by the canal, but by our agent who probably gives
his best guesstimate about when the canal will issue a date and probably in fact
has no influence whatsoever on the transit dates. In fact because of our size we
need to have a canal pilot as opposed to an "advisor" aboard.
We have been joined by our friends and
neighbours David and Avril and the Angus. They all arrived last Friday and so
far we have not done very much as there were boat repairs happening and business
to take care of and immigration to be done and visas to be got and agents to be
tracked down and admeasurers to be dealt with.
We also held a very successful party for our feloow
transitors courtesy of Rhiann Marie and the Scottish contingent. Very
As we got fed up in the marina we took a day tour
with a taxi man to Panama city, old and new and to the Miraflores locks and
museum which was absolutely brilliant and facinating. Beware any readers who
think they might take a taxi tour to Panama confirm the price first. The marina
information booklet said a taxi tour would be $125 - our guy wanted $500
dollars - he did not get it! But it still ended up an expensive day but very
We are now up the Chagres river more than 5 miles
from the sea anchored in a pool which is over 30 foot deep. Our anchorage was surrounded by troops of howler monkeys who
issue the most terryfying blood curdling howling screaming and roaring you have
We had a very amusing morning with me, from the
safety of the boat, howling back at the local "king of the swingers" who
was going berserk
with me howling back at him. However though they
sounded really close we still never saw them through the dense jungle
We have made several excursions in the dingy
further up river and up tributaries of the Chagres where we saw at close
quarters a large troop of White Faced monkeys who were cheeky wee monkeys.
Toucan, parakeets and parrots and many birds of prey, kingfisher, heron and
eagrets could also be seen. It is beautiful here.
We plan a short visit up a creek now where we are
looking for a waterfall and swimming hole. The main river is out of bounds for
swimming because of crocodiles. However we have not seen them yet. I think
that's more scary.
We will then return to the marina in the slim hope
of an earlier transit and also to attend to some business and annoyingly some
more repair work to the boat.