Mettacomet Impacks Planet Earth!
Trip Start Dec 25, 2009
36Trip End Feb 13, 2010
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Lets discuss the boat in some detail. The 50 foot Mettacomet is a 1942 metal craft that has been fitted for sails. The diesel engine is of the same vintage and is the only thing that runs as advertised. The boat has no safety railings on the front deck, all of the ropes are very old and frayed. The anchor has to be raised by hand, there is only one fire extinguisher on board. The french cook Richard was Vietnamese who lived in France and was handy with a knife. Richard was preparing sandwiches during the only day he was on board. He sat in the step into the kitchen. He started to make the sandwiches by placing the bread on the crotch of his filthy bathing trunks, someone handed him a plate but he just waved it off
Fern and Rene took over the kitchen and really saved the trip for the rest of us
The ladder that we all used to get back in the boat was a real safety hazard as it was just 2x4s held together with rope. The steps would twist and send the person falling in to he water hooked in the ropes. On day one, one of the guys cut his big toe rather badly on the ladder and bottom of the boat, Harve didn't care and was unable to come up with a first aid kit. We doctored him up with our own kits.
The sailing was always rough with 3-5 meter waves topped with a three foot chop. Nearly everyone aboard was feeling poorly or actually sea sick. Three out of the four of our group had major difficulty the first day.
At the end of the first day of sailing/motoring we stopped at a nice Caribbean Kuna tribe island. We were to spend one evening here and move on to another island. Since the cook quit we bought a fish from the natives and had a fish feast prepared by the locals on the island
The captain, Harve Guiter was a drug addict who openly used marijuana regularly. I will not call him captain again as this is a direct affront to all of the other good captains plying the waters. He started with his first joint at 3.30 each morning and had one every hour of so after that. He admitted that he had a cocaine problem for 33 years and had quit one month ago. I think not! He was a typical drug Dependant person and used lying as a first effort. This never stopped. His mood would swing with the intake of the drugs and was unpredictable ranging from ranting and raving to dancing and singing. He drank many bottles of wine during the day and evening, mixed with beer that he commandeered from his passengers.
This behavior and decision processes continued with decisions changing sometimes within minutes
We pulled the anchor and sailed for another 7 hours of rough sailing. We passed by some spectacular islands with pristine beached and good mooring in protected harbors. Instead of one of these places we moored in a slightly protected trashy site with no redeeming value. A boat load of sick people who were stranded on board.
Well we are now in the small port of Subzero. It is a border town in Columbia. We got stamped into the country yesterday. Some of the passengers got off with a yell of relief. We spent another god forsaken night on the boat. This time it actually could get worse as it rained hard forcing those who normally slept on deck to seek shelter. Very tight quarters even tighter! We were able to make arrangements to get our bikes on to a cargo ship that looked like it should be in the Bogart movies. We loaded up the bikes and will leave with the vessel India Kuna at 5 am tomorrow. A 16 hour 30 mile journey that will stop in several small villages along the way to drop off and pick up cargo. Wish us luck! We should be in Turbo tomorrow at 9.30 pm.
We are off the boat from hell and on to the boat from last last century. Adventure abounds and we cant be more excited about it!!
We are all well and happy. We say hello to our family and friends. This lengthy story will have to be written later.
For another perspective read the blog of Charles and Ben on www.afewmoremiles.com