Puerto Williams - Cleared In

Alongside Puerto Williams
Weather: Showers, windy, cool

This morning the immigration people arrived and I queued up with crew from a couple of other yachts as we completed the initial bit of paperwork on the main deck of the Micalvi. From there I had to walk the short distance to the Port Captain’s office to complete the paperwork for Sylph and to pay the light house and port fees. The people running the show here were the same as I had dealt with earlier, namely naval officers and ratings. The whole of Puerto Williams is a naval base and as best I can work out the main reason for its existence is primarily to maintain a presence and thereby exercise Chile’s sovereignty of the land and maritime regions hereabouts. It amused me a little that I had to pay the fees in US dollars and that the Navy, as an arm of the Chilean government, would not accept its own legal tender. It hardly seems to be giving the right signal to business people and the like if they are to have any confidence in the Chilean economy. As this caught me rather by surprise I had to go back to the boat to fetch some US dollars. Fortunately the fees only came to $16.60 which the friendly and helpful staff kindly rounded up to $17 for me as they obviously do not like small change.

I then spent the rest of the afternoon out of the wind and drizzle exploring the local museum which, while minimal on display, was well worth the visit, especially as it was free. The booklet they provide English speaking visitors with was very informative, though with the usual modern style of museums and anthropologists which to my mind go a little overboard in their sensitivity to identities and a bunch of postmodernist rhetoric, but this approach sure beats the hell out of the insensitive and one-eyed views of the modern proselytising atheists, as a Catholic acquaintance back in Annapolis so aptly named the likes of Dawkins, Hitchins and co. Well that is my little rant for the day out of my system. With luck the yacht club’s pub might be open this evening. The pub is the bridge of the Micalvi and there are a few thirsty yachties about so it should be a good place to glean some useful intelligence, and I might even have a beer or two.

All is well.

Bob Cat:

The skipper seems to be getting a bit miserly on fuel for the heater, just have to curl up a little tighter in my own furry ball …. zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.