Heading north to Bocas del Toro

Lynn & Mike ..around the world
Mike Drinkrow & Lynn v/d Hoven
Mon 18 Jul 2011 17:53
09:33.44N 079:39.69W     Portobelo to Bocas del Torro
We have been back in Portobelo for a little over a week now. Our first night was fun, up at Capt Jack's celebrating his birthday!  Thereafter however, time has been absorbed with boat maintenance.  Sadly Portobelo is not very convenient - in that it is a 1 hour "chicken bus" ride to Sabanitas, where you can get some things done/ bought - or you need to go another 30 mins on the bus to Colon. Furthest (and best) is Panama City, which means going to Colon and then to Panama City (3 hour on the busses!)

The water-maker continues to give problems and with lots of effort from Mike, and some bypassing of systems, he always seems to get it going again. Unfortunately we have had no luck with fixing the depth sounder.  In addition to all the reading of manuals and re-setting that we both did,  Che from Patricia Anne (a computer wizz) spent a few hours doing much of the same, and checking the network, but still no joy. We now have to take it into Panama City which Mike has decided to do later. 
Our main engine alternator also had to be re-wired - very irritating as it was repaired in Florida earlier this year. However Mike sourced an electromechanical guy in Sabanitas (that spoke English!!) who co-ordinated the repair for him.

One bit of excitement was a storm that came through and lifted the anchors of three boats, causing them to drag through the anchorage. One unmanned boat went bumping into another and then carried on through the anchorage. Mike and I grabbed our wet-weather gear and headed out to help.  As we have a powerful dinghy, and Mike has some experience in dragging boats and re-anchoring them - we were able to quite quickly avert disaster.  Time2 is getting quite a reputation in Portobelo as being the rescuer!  Good for our image, as many of the cruising sailboats are somewhat disparaging about motor boats (stinkpots!) and their owners!

But now it is time to get out of here and have a change of scenery. We will leave later this afternoon for the 22hour trip up to the Bocas del Torro archipelago. Being the rainy season, we have had a lot of thunderstorms here but are hoping for a relatively peaceful trip tonight.
Inside of the bus ...and yes.. those are feather boas!
Fishing in Portobelo