Sunday, December 27, 2009

Aruba to Cabo de la Vela

It's rare that things go according to plan! Dennis decided that I would take Mark on Sea Cycle and Dick on Equinox in our dinghy (we can plane with 3 people) the 2 mile trip up the canal to Customs and Immigration in Aruba to check out. We had to leave early enough before the winds picked up, which meant the choppy seas in the canal. Off we set at 8:30, where I scared Mark and Dick with my speed in the dinghy. We kept dry until we slowed down where it shallowed up near the dock. Tied to a tire, quite the climb out, on our way to Immigration first. Papers and passports taken and stamped. Oh, what do you mean you're leaving tomorrow morning? Oh no, can't do that. They open at 6 a.m., come back tomorrow. You must leave immediately upon checking out. Haven't had that happen since Trinidad. My passport needed to be stamped back in again! Oh, such fun. Barb on Evening Star arranged a taxi for 5 of us to head to check out on Friday morning. Much better than the 2 mile dinghy ride.

Again, I picked up Mark and Dick and we headed in, picking up our Starbucks coffee before meeting the taxi. What luxury! Checked out with Immigration and Customs, back to the dinghy (with only a minor crisis when Dick forgot his paperwork in the taxi), everything stowed and underway by 10 a.m. We left first because we know if there's any downwind sailing involved, we're slow.

Dennis napping underway

That was the busiest night crossing we've ever had in all of our years of sailing. I guess it's the Aruba/Panama route, and we couldn't believe the ship traffic. We both hate night sailing, and it's so hard to judge distances and decide on where the lights really are. We motored, we sailed, we motored, we sailed ... I guess low winds and small seas are worth it. Pulled into Cabo de la Vela around noon, got a good hook and cleaned up. Had to put the dinghy in the water because Lewis on Coqui has been having problems with his engine, now can't go in reverse, so needed someone to give him a push to set his anchor. I climbed aboard to take the helm (he's a single hander) while he dropped the anchor and Dennis set the anchor by pushing with the dinghy. Back to the boat for naps!

Dennis and I went exploring the next day and found a nice little beach where I picked up some neat stones and sea glass. Sea Cycle was busy trying to fine tune their wind vane, but we picked up Dick and Moira from Equinox and Lewis from Coqui for an early happy hour on Audrey Paige. We're off for 5 Bays the next day, another overnight sail.


No comments: