Curacao – Bug Free, Spanish Water Anchorage

My Current Collection on the Boat, Fighting Against Mosquitos, Sand Fleas, and etc.

(July – August 2018) Meditation at sunrise on the deck is for me one of the most valuable experiences of living on a sailboat. Doing meditation in Curacao, it is nice not to worry about bug bites. Feeling the morning calmness surrounded by water, I clear my mind and embrace a new day with dreams. It always promises me a good start.

The wind blows strong in Spanish Water Anchorage in Curacao anywhere between 15 to 30 knots most of the time. So far, I haven’t seen any mosquitoes or no-see-ums (sand fleas) on the boat. Thus, I removed the mosquito net setup from my cabin. We have been sailing mostly in the tropical areas. Some areas, even though it is hot and humid, I wear long sleeve shirts and long pants and spray bug repellent around my ankles when I get up. I prefer sweating to itching from bug bites. At night when I am ready for bed, I setup my mosquito net and spray insect spray inside. Despite this effort, I have uncountable scars caused by scratching the bug bites during my sailing life. When I look at the small scars, I console myself it is better to wear than to rust.

I have tried most of the anti-itching medication from a lot of countries but none has worked fully. The other day, I found an electronic mosquito destroyer (120 volts) in a pharmacy in Curacao. Previously, my sister brought this device (220 volts) from Korea but she took it back because we run 120 volts electricity on the boat. There is no need to use this new bug protection in Curacao but I feel more protected from mosquitoes wherever we go next.

Swing Bridge and Buildings in Willemstad, Curacao

Imported Plants and Clay Pots from Venezuela, Willemstad, Curacao

View from Top of Christoffel National Park, Curacao

Plastic Recycled Art on the Dive Shop Wall, Jan Thiel, Curacao

Three Hammocks in Papagayo Beach Hotel, Jan Thiel Resort, Curacao

Wooden Pallet Bridge. Jan Thiel Preserve Mountain Bike and Hiking Trail, Curacao

Flamingo Birds on the Salt Pond, Jan Thiel Preserve, Curacao

Soon to be a Houseboat! We saw this boat three years ago without wooden frames. Fishing Dock, Spanish Water Bay, Curacao

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Internet SIM Card in Trinidad – Digicel Prepaid

My Experience with Digicel Simcard in Trinidad

(February – May 2018) In Chaguaramas, Trinidad, I took a Maxi Taxi (Bus) to buy a SIM Card from the Digicel store at the West Moorings Shopping Mall. A SIM Card costs 44 Trinidadian Dollars (about USD 7) when you add 3GB data (for 30 days) with 200 local call minutes the cost rises to 289 Trinidadian Dollars (about USD 44) including tax. I paid it by Trinidadian Dollars as they didn’t accept US Dollars. The store person set up my phone. There was no waiting line in the store. The connection speed was good.

We stayed at Peakes Marine in Chaguaramas. As the marina Wi-Fi connection speed was good, I didn’t renew the data plan and just used my phone number for calling and texting. We stayed there three months. When we ran out of 200 minutes, we went to a grocery store and added more money to my number to call or send messages.

***Helpful Notes***

  • Require a Valid Photo ID
  • APN (Access Point Name) Setup: web.digiceltt.com (*all lower case), No username or password is needed
  • Caribbean Roaming Plan: Extra cost. I decided not to buy this roaming plan as I planned to sail to various islands.
  • Data Balance Check Code: *120*4# or *120*83# and then press “talk” or “send”
  • Money Balance Check Code: *120# and then press “talk” or “send”
Posted in Caribbean Islands, Internet Abroad, Sailings

Bonaire in Summer

View from Montaya Hiking Trail, Bonaire

Bonaire was a brown island a month ago (late June) when we arrived here. Since then, it has rained often. It surprised me how much rain we have had in July. It washed down a lot of yellow dust from the boat. Brown mountains have changed to green mountains with fresh trees and bushes. Animals (goats and donkeys) seem to be content with a plenty of fresh leaves (food). Consequently, more birds are singing at dawn.

Park your car and SCUBA dive! Bonaire is a great place for SCUBA diving and snorkeling. Most dive sites are within walking distance from shore. We didn’t do many water sports this time because we got stung by sea lice. Instead, we enjoyed hiking. Trail maps are available at the Tourist Office in town. The view from top of the highest mountain (about 750 feet =250 meters) is unforgettable.

Pink Trail Mark; Locals often paint with Coral Pink Color as Flamingo Birds are symbol in Bonaire.

Trail maps show scenic driving routes and mountain bike trails. Driving on an unpaved scenic route was a little nervous. It is less touristic but worth it to experience the island of Bonaire. Mountain bike trails look nice but I didn’t try any.

There is a cruise ship that arrives here weekly (Itinerary: Panama-Colombia-Aruba-Curacao-Bonaire-Panama), 7 AM to 6 PM. When a cruise ship arrives on Tuesdays, Bonaire gets more active and vibrant.

PS: We learned it is simple and inexpensive to ship a pallet from Miami, USA to Bonaire or Curacao. There is no import tax for any “Yacht-In-Transit” items. John has been ordering boat materials and parts in the USA, to be delivered to a cargo company in Miami. When all orders are ready, a cargo company in Miami will put them on a pallet and ship it to Curacao.

Enjoying Last Sunset at Mooring Field, Kralendijk, Bonaire. We left for Curacao next day.

Aqua Bicycles in front of our boat. We were tied up to a mooring ball in front of the Venezuelan Consular Building (Blue Roof) in Kralendijk (Capital of Bonaire).

Creative Mailbox, Kralendijk, Bonaire

Our favorite grocery store in Bonaire. We enjoyed using WiFi in the cafeteria inside (air-conditioned) before shopping. Kralendijk, Bonaire

Wild Dunkey Approaching for an Apple near Boca Onima, Bonaire

Feeding Apple to Iguana, Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire

View behind of Boulders, Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire

Rocky Montana Trail, Bonaire

Flamingo Birds near Boca Slagbaai (Slaughter Bay), Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire

Seru Grandi (Big Hill), Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire. “The 58m (190feet) high terrace mainly consists of limestone containing fossil remnants of coral reefs lifted out of the sea over millennia.”

Dead Wood and Cacti, Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire

Blow Hole in Washington Slagbaai National Park, Bonaire

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Bonaire, Out of the Hurricane Zone

View from an Ice Cream Shop in Kralendijk in Bonaire

Escaping from hurricane season 2018 (June to November), we have chosen to stay in Bonaire, Curacao, and Colombia. This is our second time cruising in this area. It works with our scheduled goal which is “Crossing the Panama Canal in February 2019”.

People have often asked me what island is my most favorite. Each island has something which I like and dislike. In order to make a simple answer; I just say “Bonaire”. Visiting here for the second time, I realized why; it is yachting friendly, Customs and Immigration clearance is easy and simple, the mooring field is well-organized, it is peaceful and hassle free, nature is great, sea breeze is awesome, and ocean water is so beautiful. Bonaire is like a jewel except three things: loud motorcycle sounds (seldom), yellow dust (often), and the high price of mostly imported fruits.

Boardwalk in Kralendijk, Capital City of Bonaire Island

The other day, I met an American woman in a grocery story. She moved to Bonaire from New York about six months ago. Prior to that, she had visited here only for a week. At that time, without blinking, she chose Bonaire for her retirement place. There must be many reasons that she kept smiling the whole time we spoke to each other. By the way, US Citizens can easily apply for residency here.

Salt Farm in Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands


Beach in Klein Bonaire (Small Bonaire Island), the Caribbean Netherlands


Salt Pier Dive Site: One of the Dive Sites in Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands


A Dive Boat in Klein Bonaire (Small Bonaire Island), the Caribbean Netherlands


SCUBA Air Tanks in a Dive Shop in Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands


Cactus Plants in Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands


Iguana on the Rock, Klein Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands


Center of Kralendijk, Bonaire, the Caribbean Netherlands

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Hiking in St. John, USVI

“In any moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” – Theodore Roosevelt

View from Hiking Trail, Leinster Bay, Saint John, US Virgin Island

(June 12 to 17, 2018) Visiting St. John Island, was not on our original plan.

We believed that shipping from Florida to St. Croix, would take about two weeks. Seeing an “In-Transit Status” for days, we went to the US Post Office in St. Croix to inquire about the delivery status. We were told it would take up to 8 weeks and there is no way to track the packages when they are in transit at sea. Now, what… Most of the cruisers are out of the hurricane zone this time of the year; and the US Virgin Islands are in the Hurricane Zone. Being here during the Hurricane Season, it is nice to have the whole anchorage by ourselves but we were still concerned. Thinking about alternatives, we concluded it is best to wait here until we get all the deliveries by the USPS.

Saint John, US Virgin Island

While waiting for the packages, we decided to sail to St. John Island from St. Croix, about 35 miles, 5-6 hours sailing. Three years ago, when we sailed to St. John, we didn’t explore the island because there were too many charter boats in the winter. Since we were here in the summer this time, we were the sole boat at most of the mooring fields. Most of St. John Island is a US National Park. Hiking trails are easy to access and beaches are picture perfect beautiful. Hiking in the Tropics in summer though, is like being in a steam bath or a sauna. I kept reminding myself that I love a sauna. There must be a reason for everything. I was glad that the US Postal Service took so long, so that we had an opportunity to hike all over St. John Island.

PS: Not having the Internet access on the boat (No SIM Card), I have been inactive updating my blogs and responding to emails. I wasn’t able to connect via US T-Mobile in St. Croix, US Virgin Island.

Sargasso seaweed in Brown Bay, Saint John, US Virgin Island


A Mailbox in Saint John, US Virgin Island


National Park Visitor Center, Saint John, US Virgin Island

Old Windmill, Saint John National Park, US Virgin Island

Old Sugar Cane Boiling Pots, Saint John National Park, US Virgin Island

Dead Trees and New Green after Hurricane Irma, September 2017, Saint John, US Virgin Island


Trail Sign, Saint John National Park, US Virgin Island

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Meeting a Korean Friend in Saint Croix

Buck Island National Park, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island

(June 2018) When we were in Saint Croix three years ago, we met a Korean woman, Mia and her husband, Tommy. They built a beautiful waterfront house in St. Croix after retiring from Kentucky in the USA. They love SCUBA diving and an island life style. “Call us when you visit St. Croix again!” That was three years ago. At that time, I didn’t think it was going to happen.

We came to Saint Croix this time because we have some items to be delivered by the US Postal Service. Saint Croix is one of the United States Virgin Islands so it is easy to ship from the States. Being here, we visited Mia and Tommy’s house and enjoyed Mia’s Korean dishes and American steak. She even made “Kimchi” and packed some for us. Another day, all of us went to Buck Island National Park and had Korean Pork BBQ after snorkeling in the turquoise blue water. They stayed overnight on our boat. Our conversation continued till late watching stars together. After so long not speaking in Korean, I enjoyed talking in my mother language.

John showing me a Conch Shell in the water, Buck Island National Park, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Live Conches by Buck Island, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Sting Ray, Buck Island National Park, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Buck Island National Park, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Quick Snorkeling Shot, Buck Island National Park, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Christiansted Historical Area, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island


Rainbow at Gallows Bay Harbor, Christiansted, Saint Croix, US Virgin Island

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Full Moon Sailing to St. Croix, Ted Talks

“All of humanity’s problems stem from man’s inability to sit quietly in a room alone.” — Pascal

Early Morning Selfie after Meditation, Sailing on the way to Saint Croix, US Virgin Island

(May 30 to 31, 2018) Night sailing from St. Martin to St. Croix, about 100 miles for 20 hours. Wind speed and direction led us effortlessly downwind sailing following in one direct line. As the full moon brightened the open ocean, only a few stars were visible. Gazing at the stars, I imagined the distance between the stars and I. What kind of lives there could be beyond the universe?

When we sail at night, my watch is from 2 am till 8 am. When John woke me up for my watch, I was in a deep dream. I wanted to sleep more but I know he has been up since…? Making a cup of coffee, I came out to the cockpit and set my timer on for every 20 minutes. When the timer beeps, I checked the ocean and the boat. Earlier when we left St. Martin, there were two Cruise Ships behind of us on the AIS screen: “Allure of the Seas” and “Harmony of the Seas”. They were far gone to somewhere. They move three to four times faster than we sail.

Sailing without Mainsail from Saint Martin (SMX), French Island to Saint Croix (STX), US Virgin Island

When I go on watch, the cats meow expecting a spoonful of canned tuna, their regular morning treat! They walk around the inside of the boat and sometimes play with each other. After I fed them, I took my Sony tablet and started to watch a “Ted Talk” Podcast which I downloaded prior to this trip. It is my recent hobby, listening to Podcasts. Each “Ted Talk” Podcast is about 10 minutes, short and concise. It lets me learn about various topics and trends. At dawn, I made ‘Zen’ moment, morning meditation surrounded by a big ocean.

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Sailing in a Hurry in the Caribbean

Night sailing from Trinidad to Grenada

Two Waterfalls out of Seven Sisters Waterfalls, Grenada, West Indies

We were worried during our passage near the oil rig platforms after leaving Trinidad. We made sure we sailed at least 10 miles east of the oil platforms which is farther from Venezuela. We wanted to be invisible to any potential pirates so we sailed without lights and also turned our AIS off. However, we noticed there are many oil rig supply ships in this area. This made us somewhat relieved, and as soon as we felt we were in a safe zone, we turned our lights and AIS back on.

Closing an Old Bank Account in Grenada

Hiking Trail to Seven Sisters Waterfall, Grenada, West Indies

A white sandy bottom in turquoise water. We dropped our anchor in Prickly Bay Grenada. A hassle free and roomy anchorage is one of the major attractions in the Caribbean for cruisers. Hurricane season starts in June, and Grenada is out of Hurricane Zone.

We came here to take care of John’s bank account which he opened six years ago. It has charged a fee on of his deposit, but gives a 2% interest rate on the money. Grenada uses the Eastern Caribbean dollar which has a fixed value against the US Dollar.

In January, when we visited Suriname, we learned the devaluation of the Suriname dollar impacted the Surinamese economy. If one deposited money in a Suriname bank, the value of US dollars might be 50 % less than what was invested. These days, leaving money in a bank, looks to be a fool’s business

Swimming in Fresh Water by a Waterfall in Grenada

Swimming in Fresh Water Pool, Seven Sister’s Waterfall, Grenada, West Indies

We have more matters to resolve in the Caribbean Islands but it didn’t stop us hiking to the “Seven Sister’s Water fall” in Grenada. We jumped into the waterfall after taking two local bus rides and a short hike up the mountain. The mountain water was so sweet and tasty. It completely took the salt off from our bodies, even just for a day. I told John it was the best experience in 2018. He replied “That’s too sad.” Indeed, I really liked swimming in mountain fresh water, ironically.

Meeting a Taiwanese Sailor Girl in Grenada

Asian looking sailors are rare in this part of the world. When I see one; I immediately feel a bond and want to talk. I met Queena, a sailor from Taiwan the first time when we were in Cabo Verde. At that time, we were briefly introduced. She and her friends (from Italy) crossed the Atlantic Ocean a week or so before we did, maybe five months ago. Going to the Customs Office in Grenada, someone waved to us, Queena from Taiwan! It didn’t take much time to open our chatter box. We spoke very fast to catch up.

We learned that each of us has very little Asian food left on the boat. I mentioned to her that I ran out of Miso Paste (Soy Bean Paste). I also found that she loves Korean Hot Paste Sauce (Go-Chu-Jang) but she no longer has it. Next day, I gave a small tube of Go-Chu-Jang. The day that we left, she came by our boat and handed me some food from Taiwan. I am looking forward to making noodle soup with Dried Fish Flake and Spinach Miso Soup with Miso Paste from Taiwan. (John edit here: I would rather die a 1000 deaths than eat this stuff – end of John edit) Hoping to see her again somewhere…

Talking to “North Sails” Caribbean Representative in Antigua

Approaching Antigua, West Indies

Our next stop was Antigua. After finding a major problem with our main sail in Trinidad, we have been sailing without a main sail. We contacted the sail maker, North Sails. They have the Caribbean office in Antigua. John wanted to show the problem and also leave our ripped main sail in their sail loft, in case they need a special measurement while making a new sail.

We were told that our main sail is most likely sun damaged and the main sail cover (Sunbrella) life span is about three years. (North Sail’s Opinion) When we emailed Sailrite (major cloth and materials distributor), they told us the Sunbrella lifespan is about 10 years. We have covered our mainsail with a Sunbrella cover as soon as we arrive at a new place. In addition; we take our sails to a sail loft and get them inspected and repaired yearly.

After exchanging lots of talks and emails, North Sails has offered us a new sail at their cost. Our payment is a little less than if we were to order a new one from another sail maker. John told North Sails that a possible shipping place might be Colombia. In the meantime, we are sailing without a mainsail. We have been learning what a mainsail truly does when sailing. We have learned that it does a super job of damping the rolling and also makes tacking MUCH easier.

Finding Good Memories with My Mom, in Antigua

11 Years Old Picture with My Mom at Devel’s Bridge Park, Antigua, West Indies

Devil’s Bridge in Antigua! About 11 years ago, I took an Eastern Caribbean Cruise with my mom. Antigua was one of our stops. At that time, my mom and I took an organized tour to the Devil’s Bridge. Arriving in Antigua this time by a sailboat, I wanted to visit this place and recollect her joyful and childlike smiles.

She passed away last month at the age of 82. A decade ago, she started showing her health issues. A few years later after having both knees replaced, she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. This was the most horrible time in my life. I watched my ailing mom, who gave me nothing but unconditional love, degenerate until only her body remained; her mind was no longer there. Our siblings felt as if we and mom were living under a dark cloud during this time period. Her passing was deeply sad but we feel the sky is clear again. In my quiet times, I promise my Mom that I will live making her proud.

Enjoying French Grocery Shopping in Saint Martin, French Side

The best dinghy dock I have ever seen. Marigot Bay, Saint Martin. I recently read a book “Factfulness” by Hans Rosling. In his book, he categorized the people/countries around the world between Level 1 and Level 4. A majority of the people in a Level 1 country where the wages are about one US Dollar a day, in a Level 2 country 4 US Dollars a day, Level 3 country 16 US Dollars a day, and Level 4 Country more than 100 US Dollars a day. After reading this book, I no longer use some terms such as “Advanced, Developed, Developing, Rich, or Poor Country.” All of the people in the world thrive to move up to the next level, like we do in a school. Some Level 1 countries have moved to Level 2 and so on. By reading the data analysis on his book, the poverty and health level in the world has improved a lot.

The “Super U Grocery Store” in Marigot, French Side of Saint Martin Island is awesome! I have been enjoying the groceries from a Level 4 country, France: Gourmet Salad Leaves, Wine, Pate, Cheese, and Bread. I am realizing why French are famous for food, wine, and cheese. They are simply great and inexpensive. I wanted to stock up lots of wine and cheese but I decided not to. “Out of sight out of mind!” Having a lot of them on the boat would lead me to excessive consumption. For that same reason, I don’t keep cookies or potato chips on the boat.

One of our cats got surgery in Saint Martin, Dutch Side.

Our Cat Enemy with a Licking Shield after a Surgery, Saint Martin, West Indies

Some lumps on our cat’s belly alerted us. We found a veterinarian (Consultation Fee: 30 USD) and had Enemy (Nickname: Chubster) get the surgery (removing a big chunk of belly and one of her nipples). She has eight stitches on her belly and has to live with a licking shield for 10 days. Her tissue test will be sent to the USA for a lab analysis. The doctor told us that the island doesn’t have a lab yet to justify the business. We will get the test result by email as we will be leaving Saint Martin next week.

Boating Stores, Doctors, and Pharmacies in both French and Dutch Sides in Saint Martin

Hurricane “Irma” attacked Saint Martin in September 2017. The boating stores and repair facilities have plenty of jobs to do. There are a lot of the boats to fix not to mention that some buildings and houses are still without roofs or with blue tarps. In Marigot, about one third of the restaurant/business are still out of business due to the damage. There is a McDonald’s where we used to go to use WiFi. It looks like it will re-open soon. I also noticed some street lights have been replaced with a better system using LED lights. Hopefully, pain brings gain for the Island of Saint Martin.

John visited some doctors to get his prescriptions as he had four years ago. The doctors are still at the same place. The consultation costs about 30 Euros or 33 Dollars. Medication prices are relatively inexpensive also. This is one of the reasons that we stopped in Saint Martin. In Addition, John has been buying lots of boat materials and replacement parts as they are easy to find here.

John at Devel’s Bridge Park, Antigua, West Indies


Pigeon Island Anchorage, Guadeloupe


Falmouth Anchorage and Marina, Antigua, West Indies


English Harbor Anchorage, Antigua, West Indies


Good Free WiFi Available at Covent Garden Supermarket, Antigua, West Indies


Colorful Windows in Antigua, West Indies


Oil Drum Paint, Antigua, West Indies



The best dinghy dock I have ever seen. Marigot Bay, Saint Martin


Nice Anchorage, Marigot Bay, Saint Martin, West Indies


Broken Masts by Hurricane Irma in September 2017, Saint Martin, West Indies


New Sailboat Masts to be Installed, Sint Maarten, West Indies


Newly Delivered Mast in a Box, Sint Maarten, West Indies


Philipsburg, Sint Maarten, West Indies


Early Morning Beach, Philipsburg, Sint Maarten, West Indies

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Medical Service Experiences, Sailings

Unique Experiences in Trinidad

Guide at Pitch Lake, Trinidad, West Indies

  • Driving a rental car with 300,000 kilometers on it (about 190,000 Miles).
  • Seeing an outdoor cremation during a Hindu Funeral near the “Temple in the Sea”.
  • Seeing what looks like a huge parking lot but in reality is the “Asphalt Lake” or “Pitch Lake”.
  • Watching the colorful Scarlet Ibis and Flamingos in the “Caroni Swamp”.
  • Viewing the humming birds at “ASA Wrights Nature Center”.
  • Wandering everywhere in the capital city, “Port of Spain”.
  • Eating fried Shark with baked bread called “Bake and Shark” at Richard’s at Maracas Bay Beach.
  • Having lunch in the “Woodbrook Restaurant District” after seeing a wonderful doctor and a dentist.

We will remember all these wonderful times. We are heading north to Grenada today. I will miss all the Trinidadians we met during our stay, especially at the boatyard, “Peake’s Yacht Services”.

Pitch Lake, Trinidad, West Indies

Pitch Lake, Trinidad, West Indies

Scarlet Ibis Birds at Caroni Swamp, Trinidad, West Indies

Scarlet Ibises on the Trees at Caroni Swamp, Trinidad, West Indies

Richard’s Bake and Shark Restaurant, Maracas Bay Beach, Trinidad, West Indies

Maracas Bay Beach, Trinidad, West Indies

Humming Bird at ASA Wrights Nature Center

Bird Nests on a Tree, Port of Spain, Trinidad, West Indies

Clear Water Pool at ASA Wright Nature Center, Trinidad, West Indies

A Person Posing before an Event, Port of Spain, Trinidad, West Indies

A Rally Nearby Court House, Port of Spain, Trinidad, West Indies

People Crossing the Road by Bus Terminal, Port of Spain, Trinidad, West Indies

Downtown Port of Spain, Trinidad, West Indies

Wall Display at Hindu Temple, Trinidad, West Indies

Hindu Funeral Service by the Temple in the Sea, Trinidad, West Indies

Piled Wood for Cremation, Trinidad, West Indies

The Temple in the Sea, Trinidad, West Indies

Rental Car Odometer, Trinidad, West Indies

Display in Maxi Taxi Bus, Trinidad, West Indies

Public Bus Nearby Peake’s Yacht Service Marina, Chaguaramas, Trinidad, West Indies

Posted in Caribbean Islands, Sailings

Boat Repairs in Chaguaramas, Trinidad

Peake’s Yachting Service Travelift in Action

The craziness in the tropical heat is about to end. John’s boat working fever finally has calmed down. Bad Bunny looks really shiny and sharp from the rub rail down. Unfortunately according to John, this just means we have to do more work on the deck to make it all match! (?)

We have been staying at Peake’s Yachting Services (boatyard) for almost three months. We like the ample space and friendly employees in Peake’s Marine. Bunny got a new paint job (Hull, Mast, Bottom, and Dinghy), also miscellaneous repairs and upgrades (Gelcoat Repair, Welding, New Bow Protector, Dodger Vinyl Replacement, Cockpit Cushion Fabric, Jib Furler Parts, etc.) We now plan to explore Trinidad and visit the Leatherback Turtle hatching sight at night before we depart Chaguarmas, Trinidad.

Peake’s Yachting Service Travelift

The closest distance from Venezuela to Trinidad is about 7 miles (about 11 kilometers). Due to the Venezuelan Crisis, I originally was hesitant to come to Trinidad. John has been happy with his decision to repair Bunny in Trinidad. Chaguaramas offers extensive boating related businesses. It is like a one stop boating service zone. Some parts are expensive due to tax and shipping costs from another country. Most parts and materials are easily available. Locals said that the yachting business has slowed down compared with previous years.

Our paint job came out very satisfying. We hired Classic Yacht Services (the owner’s nick name is COW as he is a vegetarian.) His crew’s prep work was excellent and the painter, Newton is one of the best painters in Chaguaramas in the opinion of other painters in the yard. We hired Jonas for rigging (Trinidad Rigging) and we liked his meticulously planned work and how he delivered everything on time. We liked Ammsco machinery and their superb aluminum welding job on our mast head crane. We also had a great experience with the woodworker John Francois here in the Peake’s yard.

Bunny has been scheduled to go back to water today. Our 90 day stay expires soon. We plan to leave here in a week and not to renew our visa permit.

PS: We found a last-minute disturbing problem. Our mainsail is totally rotten. We can grab it and rip it by hand at any fold (two layers of cloth) without much force. We have used it for six years and sailed about 25,000 miles with it. We religiously covered the sail with the sunbrella cover when it is not being used. Both main sail and Genoa (Jib Sail) were made by North Sails about seven years ago. The Genoa is still good. The ‘Main Sail’ means so much because it is MAIN element on a SAIL boat. We want to know what if anything North Sails will do about this. While figuring out why and how, and also what company to order, we have decided sail to our next destination with just the Genoa (Jib Sail). Once we order a new mainsail, we will get it delivered to our future destination, most likely Colombia.

After Sanding


After Three Coats of Primer


After Two Coats of Base Paint


Yellow Stripe Water Line Painted


New Stainless Steel Bow Protector and Green Stripes Painted


After Bottom Paint


After Dinghy Primer


Ready for Welding on Mast Head


New Mast Head Crane Welded


New Code Zero Plate Welded and Painted on Mast Head


Old Electric Cables Before Replaced with New Ones


Parts and Lines Reassembled on Mast


Putting Mast Back on Bad Bunny

Posted in Boat Projects, Caribbean Islands, Sailings