Moving Around Colombia

Colombia (Caribe) overview

Colombia (Caribe) overview

Here’s a closer view of Baru and the Rosarios….

Baru and Rosarios

Isla Baru and Rosarios, Colombia

And, finally, here are the Bernardos.  There are some rumors of fish at the Bernardos.  I hope they’re true.

San Bernardos, Colombia

San Bernardos, Colombia

Eventually we packed it up in Baru and headed back to CTG.  We decided to leave fairly early, though it was only 20 miles.  Of course, the wind and wave predictions were completely off.  When we made it out of the bay, we were forcefed 15 knots of wind on the nose, and 8 foot slop – with short period waves (also on the nose).

Lauren made pancakes that morning, and ate way too many – a rookie move when you’re heading out into the ocean. Fifteen minutes into the trip back to CTG she wasn’t feeling well.  These are learning experiences, she was learning. The trip should have taken three hours or so, but it took four – with both engines wide open.  I wanted to push the engines a bit anyways – it’s good to run them hot a little every so often.

I didn’t mind the ride at all, given some of the crap I’ve pushed through – this was gradeschool recess.  Hardly a test.  But we did have some waves break over the bow, and I didn’t have a chance to raise a sail until we’d made the turn back into the bay in CTG.  Once back, I found a spot close to Club Nautico and dropped the anchor.  One of my neighbors came out on deck to yell at me and tell me that Club Nautico would tell me I was too close – which was crap.  Club Nautico only cares that you pay an outrageous fee to dock your dinghy there (I’ve managed to skirt around that too).  What my neighbor was really trying to do, was to get me to move – but he was going about it in a particularly chickenshit fashion, by trying to make it seem like someone else cared where I anchored.  I’m long past letting crazy old sailors tell me where to drop my anchor, I smiled, waved and yelled back “We’ll see.”  He wasn’t happy having his bluff called, but I cracked an anchor beer and forgot about him.

Then I got sick again.  Same thing, but not as bad.  Fever, chills, aches, and a really upset stomach.  A couple of days after that I was alright again, but now the boat projects were pressing.  My nice clean engine rooms now had saildrive oil in them and a small amount of engine oil in them… Honestly, most sailors would just wipe it up (or not) and carry on.  a little oil in the engine room is par for the course. I couldn’t handle the oil in there though, so I cleaned it all up, pulled the offending parts and began replacing O-rings and oil-seals.

About 9PM the other night we were greeted with a little Cullo de Pollo (a squall).  Nothing too crazy on this one, but we saw about 30 knots of sustained wind, some gusts higher, and a bit of rain.  We’d dropped my oversize anchor and more than enough chain in the right position, so we held.  But other boats were dragging anchor all around us.  I admit to smiling a little as I watched the drama unfold – my neighbor who was unhappy with my anchoring earlier, now realized that he had many more problems as other boats (but not NOMAD) were dragging anchor towards him.  I just had a drink and sat in the captain’s chair and watched until I got bored.  Then The Sopranos called me and I went below to answer that call.

I have a buddy, his name is Dan.  He decided to come visit.  He likes to spearfish.  He’s a good friend, one of my best – so I’m allowed to say mean things about him.  Males of our species are funny that way, we usually say mean stuff to each other as a way of showing how much we care.  Anyways.

Dan showed up yesterday.  I was running around organizing bottom cleaning, saltwater pump rebuilds, and finding O-rings when he showed up.  I grabbed him at the dinghy dock and took him and his plethora of boat-parts out to NOMAD.  Whenever someone comes and visits – it’s a boat-Christmas.  He changed clothes and I took him on a mini boat-parts-search through Cartagena.  Then we grabbed food.  After lunch, Dan promptly fell asleep in the middle of our workspace and didn’t move until dark.  Very considerate.

After Dan’s all-day nap, in the middle of my workspace, as I slaved and sweated and bled and cursed to get the boat ready to go, so Dan could get some spearfishing in while he was here – we went into town. For some reason Dan had a ton of energy, and I was beat.  Lauren had coffee three different times yesterday – so they were chipper.  I was looking for a way to get back to the boat and get some sleep.  We ate, then grabbed beers and walked and talked and explored a little.

Eventually we headed back to the boat.  On the boat, we poured drinks – but I didn’t even socialize.  I just took the drink downstairs, finished it, and then fell asleep.  A good night’s sleep was needed.

The weather isn’t cooperating right now.  I really want to head to the Bernardos, so does Dan.  The trip down will be something like 45 miles. No problem.  But Dan only has a few days down here, and we have to get back.  Sailing on a schedule again…

Right now it looks like I’ll sacrifice a night’s sleep to get NOMAD down to the Bernardos.  I actually like sailing at night.  It’s nice every once in a while.  The plan, right now, is to do all of our last-minute stuff (shopping, water, fuel) today and then organize the boat for a night-exit.  We’ll leave about midnight, and head out into the sloppy stuff – hoping to get there just a bit after daylight.

That really isn’t impressive, or worth writing about.  The thing that’s going to be interesting is getting back.  We’re on a schedule, and that means that if this weather pattern holds (a strong North wind/wave combo) – we’ll be motoring against strong wind and waves on the way back.  Not fun and tough on the boat.  That means I can only plan on 4 knots, too – which means that trip will take 12 hours on the way back.  Lame.

All that said, it feels good to get moving again.  If the Bernardos do have fish, we’ll find them – and I’ll finally eat some fresh fish again.  Finally…  If not, this will just be another boatwork interlude. Either way, we’re moving and we’ll be diving soon.

On that note, it’s likely that I won’t have service there – so there may not be a post for a few days.  Stay tuned as I work that out.

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