Still lounging on Rio Dulce
Trip Start Jan 07, 2008
36Trip End Ongoing
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Malaria, a launcha sinking, lightening striking and murder.......hmmmm.....Where shall I start first? I guess with the malaria. No one I know, but a woman who owns a small marina right around the corner from Tortugal contracted the disease a few weeks back. A reminder that I am in the tropics, specifically the jungle, and I need to continue to take precautions. It hasnīt scared me off, only reminded me of the reality of my environment.
Launcha sinking. Took place right in front of our marina one beautiful sunny day about 2 weeks ago
Lightening strike. I had the good fortune to be asked by my friends, Wolfgang and Barbara to cat/boat sit for 6 days while they made a visa run to Belize. I was thrilled to be asked and quickly jumped at the opportunity. After a full day of learning the ins and outs of the boat and their dinghy (they are docked at a mooring just off the Marina, not on land) I felt confident I could pull this job off. Plus, my friends previously mentioned in this blog, Claudie and Dietmar on Tandem, would be acting as back up if I needed any help
I got on the boat at about 3 o'clock on a Wednesday afternoon and proceed to get settled in. During the night rain started to fall and I woke up several times. At about 4 am the storm increased and I got up to close the hatches on board. There were several really bright and loud cracks of thunder and lightening and I started to worry because I was entombed in a divining rod with a bed. There was one particularly loud one that scared the crap out of me and then it seemed to roll off and I eventually fell back to sleep after reading for a bit.
At 8 am I woke to Claudie knocking on the side of the boat asking if I was okay. I rustled out of bed, and sat and the cockpit and chatted with her. The particularly loud clap of lightening that scared the crap out of me had actually hit their boat and they have some pretty serious issues on board. Being a fiberglass boat, it handles lightening a little differently than wood and aluminum, and once it enters the boat, it needs to find an exit. It did so in the form of holes in and around the water line on the boat. The boat on the other side of them got residual electricity from their strike, and have ultimately lost about $3,000 worth of equipment
Murder. Two nights ago two Alaskan cruisers were attached on their boat anchored about a mile from my marina. The husband died of his injuries, the wife is being flown back to the states today for medical care. They were under anchor, not in a secure area, and from what I understand went to bed without securing the hatch on their boat. Not good. It is like leaving your front door wide open. It is a sad and tragic tale, and to keep it in perspective, the last murder of a tourist/cruiser took place here about 8 years ago. But, this is an area that depends on cruisers to support their economy and the government has responded appropriately and is doing their best to handle things as best they can. Another lesson that violence is worldwide....no matter how far off the beaten path you are, you can fall victim to it.
Be careful what you ask for, you might get it
I have decided to take a sailing class this weekend and am very excited about it. I will post again when that is completed. Hopefully by monthīs end I will be on the road.
Until next post.....BESOS Y'all.