Nearly arrested, south of the line

Rich Carey
Wed 11 Apr 2018 01:15
0:53.890S 89:36.833W

Crossed the Equator during the last night - now reading southings and westings. A little less sleep as we approached the coast, but still well rested. Fortunately I had checked in with the agent, who informed me that Yachts are now (rules change weekly), diverted from Puerto Ayora to the Capital, Puerto Morena. That was fine - infact a bit closer, so pulled in mid morning (actually slowed down so that I wouldn't be too early).

Anchored in 'Wreck Bay' ... no worries. Then ...

Sillyness 1. Two young Seals hopped on the back, climbed into the cockpit and made themselves very comfortable. They're so ungainly, but they can climb anything!

Sillyness 2. A guy in a boat came by, speaking no English. One word I got out of the Spanish stream, was 'Gala' - ah, yes, my agent. The guy then mimed that I needed to yet again go swimming and cleaning. Ridiculous. This isn't a show parade, it's about invasive species, and if I've brung em, they're already here. But, you do as you're told, right? After an hour, when I was half way around the hulls, a boat load of officials arrived, and as they approached - to a person (8 persons) - they glared down at me in the water, wagging their 'you are a very very naughty boy' fingers at me. Oops! Turns out the earlier 'advisor' was just a water taxi, sticking his bloody oar in! BTW - I'm not joking, at all ... Anyway, I wouldn't have blamed them if they'd refused to process x86, and told me to Foxtrot Oscar. My agent looked 'very worried', and I'm sure she's at home now talking to her husband about the 'complete plonker' she had to deal with today.
Luckily they didn't give me the bums rush, and the 'gang' boarded x86 (police, immigration, customs, and a Jehovah Witness who had smuggled himself on - ok that 'is' a joke). Lucky again - I had a printer and a soft copy of Encyclopedia Brittanica, as they needed 5 copies of every page. Remember that I am stood there doing this, soaked, dripping - water everywhere. No-one spoke any English, which is likely why I wasn't stood to attention on deck, being vigorously called to account by each department in turn ...
No diver ... WTF! I've been cleaning and sweating this inspection for weeks! Cursory look at the food ... WTF! I've thrown a ton overboard, like it was contraband, but worse (apparently, you bring the wrong type of cheese here, it starts a plaque and everyone dies).
Cursory look at my lables, signs and garbage processing area - things of beauty - took me ages.
Then they gave me 71 forms to sign, and buggered off. As they left, one of the Cops said 'welcome to Galapagos', and as my passport got stamped, I think I'm legal ...! Just in case I'm not, and a second gang are imminent, I'm now ashore writing this in a Galapagos bar, grabbing half a dozen swifties, before moving on or going to jail.
To deflect from my stupidity, I like to think that I had the last laugh. I had prepared mucho juice and chocolate cookies for the hoard, but as it seemed entirely inappropriate to serve up the goodies, in my aqua-man dripping state, they got nothing ...

Getting ashore is nice and easy. 1$ water taxi, hailed as they oft scoot past. I'm going to get many of these, in the hope that I recognize, and thus can give a good spanking to,  the 'clean your hull sir', Galapagos advisor I met earlier.

All's wet on x86, just chilling on Galapagos.

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