Last Few Days

Another mix of days around here.  Some wet and overcast (crap), the others clear and nice – but hot.  I wasn’t too happy about said overcast days, but I made it out to the local internet hotspot – Panama Reef Divers.   There I met a couple of fellow nomads – Amy and Austin.

New Friends

Amy is English, Austin is American – Cuban and speaks excellent Spanish.  I forgave Amy for being English, just to get that out of the way.  They met over craigslist, in the United States, when she responded to one of his craigslist ads – they were both looking for a ride to backpack through a national park.  Now they’re both in Puerto Lindo, Panama helping out at a local hostel.  She (Amy) manages it and he (Austin) works there part-time doing minor boat work and anything internet/network related. I desperately needed to get my WiFi network set up onboard – so his skillset was appreciated by me.

That  overcast day Austin showed me around the “town.”  Which mostly consists of a couple of places to buy cold beer (one French, one Dutch), one place to buy a hot meal, one place to pray to God, a small tienda (super-limited store), and a place to buy fuel (Jose’s house – he drives fuel in from somewhere else and sells it here by the liter).

Jose has a minor racket going on – everyone needs fuel (boats, cars, motorcycles), and he’s the only one who sells it in Puerto Lindo.  The good news – it’s not overly expensive.  He really could gouge you if he wanted to – but the prices are fair to slightly expensive.   It cost me about $125 to fill up the boat with diesel and my dinghy with mixed gas.  And I had some diesel leftover.  I almost spent that much every time I filled up my truck back home – down here that’ll last much longer.

Anyways – I ended up eating with them that night.  They made octopus, it was delicious.  They fed me ice cold beer as well.  Bueno.

A Network Onboard

The next day I met Austin early to get the WiFi network set up onboard.  Roughly 10AM.  Life’s tough.

He’d agreed to help me wire and set-up my wireless network onboard (yeah, I know how that sounds).  We poured sweat all day below-decks – fighting with some of the panels and figuring out how to get everything wired.  There were times when I really thought we’d never get it figured out.  But we did.   I bought this system through Island Time PC – great stuff, simple to figure out and setup.   The thing that took all day was running the wire from the antenna to the router (through the damn boat).

I now have a wireless network onboard, but I’m just out of range of  Panama Reef Divers, where there’s internet intermittently between 10:30 AM and 6:30 PM.

Amy and Austin have also helped me figure out my laundry issue, procure local fruit from the “fruit guy” (a dude that comes through in a truck that yells into a megaphone every couple of days), figure out getting to Colon, and finding a local mechanic.  Handy people to know.

Boat Projects

My starboard engine is still acting up.  There’s a short somewhere that’s causing the damn thing to start randomly.  I’ve cleaned connections, checked fuses, and tried what limited trouble-shooting I’m capable of – to no avail.  I have a local (German) guy coming out to look at it this afternoon, hopefully.   It would make my week if he could figure it out.   If he can’t, there’s a big decision to be made – and it could involve quite a bit of money.  No bueno.

I have two other boat projects that I want to get done before leaving Puerto Lindo – hook up my AIS and play with the watermaker.   When I say “play with the watermaker”, I really mean:  flush it, take it apart, replace all of the O-rings, and put it back together.  I have a feeling that both of those projects will take longer than I thought.  Good news is that I can do it all inside, so rain or no-rain I can work on those projects.

There’s a bunch of shopping I need to do.  I’d definitely prefer to do it in Panama City, so I’m seriously considering renting a car.  I need some bigger stuff – like a BBQ grill, a kayak, and a couple more fishing rods.

Finally got some diving in as well.  Turns out my French neighbor was right – the fish are small and smart.  It’s also a bit murky right now with the recent rains.  I’ll probably give it a shot again tomorrow.

Anyways – I’m off to try to make progress on those boat projects.

Subscribe to get notified when there’s new content!