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It’s a boat: Review of Sailing for two Years, Back to Morehead City, North Carolina, USA

I count ‘Right Now’ more than ‘Best Memories’. However, writing this, I am flashing about beautiful memories of blue water, island people, jungles, fresh fish, and culture from the Caribbean… For last two years, we sailed down from Morehead City (North Carolina) to Stuart, Florida, then continuously sailing to Saint Martin, British Virgin Islands, US Virgin Islands, Spanish Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Bonaire, Curacao, Colombia, San Blas/Panama, Guatemala, and back to the USA (Key West to Morehead City).

After arriving in Morehead City, one of our friends jokingly told me that “You must be tough still living on the boat with John.” During this journey,

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Burglar Bars for the Hatches

While staying in some anchorages at night, we sometimes wished to have a bit more protection on our deck hatches. We have four small hatches and one big hatch on the boat. These hatches are big enough so we can get out of the boat if needed during an emergency; at the same time, any intruder can easily break-in when we are soundly sleeping at night. Looking back, there are some anchorages, both John and I took a turn to watch at night because we didn’t feel safe. For about three years, John has wanted to have the burglar bars made.

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‘Land of Trees’, Boat Projects Accomplished in Rio Dulce, Guatemala

I have read that ‘Guatemala’ means ‘Land of Trees’ in the indigenous language. The country is still very green with lots of forests but most people use wood for cooking meals. Based on the daily wage, there are not enough jobs for the people here, and to compound the problem, families have lots of children leading to even more widespread poverty and overpopulation. Even though I prefer to eat meals cooked in either a wood burning oven or over and open fire, I am glad to see some are replaced with gas ovens or electric ovens as that means the deforestation might have a chance of being stopped.

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The Rio Dulce, a River in the Jungle

Sailing to Rio Dulce was an impromptu decision for us. This is the place where the original Jonny Weissmuller Tarzan movies were filmed. While we were passing through the Rio Dulce river gorge, John was more impressed by it than I was. He never stopped saying that “Wow, it’s awesome!” As the river is over 15 miles long to the main town, it took about four hours from Livingston (the Caribbean Sea) to Fronteras (a village along the river). On the way, we anchored our boat in front of the Hot Springs and jumped into the thermal water, took a cave tour,

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A Family business that does great business! (Boat Repair in Santa Marta)

We recently had a lot of boat plumbing issues and have made many trips to a hose and fitting supply store Correas, Guayas Y Ensambles S.A.S., located at Carrera 11a. No. 11-23, in Santa Marta.

It is a family run business that specializes in hose assemblies both hydraulic and water, they also do cable assemblies. They have a huge inventory of parts and have been able to solve so many of my problems. If they do not have it, they know where to get it!

The owner and his son both speak quite a bit of English and with our little Spanish communications were possible.

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Evening with Colombian Families, ‘No Posible Ingles’

Our boat projects are almost completed.

We cheered when the ‘Water Maker High Pressure Gauge’ was successfully installed. At first, we thought we had to send the parts to the USA. Sending and receiving parts takes more time and also may involve 28% import tax. Magically, a local hydraulic store solved our problem (*Store Name: Correas, Guayas Y Ensambles S.A.S., *Address: Carrera 11a. No. 11-23, Santa Marta, Colombia).

With pleasure, we invited the owner of the hydraulic store and his workers and their wives over to the boat for an informal evening of drinks and snacks.

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Start All Over Again!

We are in Colombia. A New Place! It’s time to start all over again. Immigration and Customs process (via Santa Marta Marina), getting Colombian money (Pesos), learning the local system, finding out the stores, getting to know new people, and etc. In all of our previous stops people were either bi, tri, or even quad Lingual, so getting information was pretty easy. Neither one of us speaks Spanish very well nor do the majority of the Colombians speak English.

Food prices have made our jaws drop here. We can easily get a good lunch for two to three US Dollars.

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