Sunday, 18 August 2013

The delights of palm trees and sandy beaches

So, the San Blas is growing on us. We have been spending the last week in two delightful anchorages, the East Lemmons and then the Lagoon in the Holandes Cays. Both boast sparkling clear water, lots of reef with interesting fish, and pretty little white sand islands with coconut palms. Our boat pets, as previously mentioned (Jayne and Phil, Canadians with an interesting adventure of their own, www.ultimateride.ca) are still with us, and the company has been lovely.

In fact, we were so lucky to be in the Holandes anchorage at the right time for even more socializing. The weather bestowed us with three days of clear skies and rain-free nights, and one of the other boats in the anchorage decided it was time to take advantage of the gap in the clouds and organized a beach bar-b-que and invited all the boats nearby.

The little island on which the bar-b-ques was held was no more than a lump of sand protruding out of the sea. It was only about as big as the backyard of one of the houses in Manitoba where I grew up. One of the other cruisers said that when he had been here two years ago, there were a couple of palm trees and a Kuna family living on the island, but now it was just sand. Global warming is particularly dangerous in this part of the world.

We all brought foil packages to roast in the driftwood fire. (Not to be snide, but ours had lobster tails in garlic butter.) There were seven boats in the anchorage and every boat joined in. There were several Americans, from the east coast, west coast and midwest, a French boat, an Australian boat, a Panamanian one, and even a small fluffy white dog named "Duke". Many people had been in the San Blas for a while, at least months and sometimes years. There were many sailing stories exchanged (the wind blew THIS hard) and lots of questions about where each boat might go next. It was a lovely evening and a great chance to meet our "neighbours".

If you have been following the Spot track, we are now back in a place we've been before, Rio Diablo, in the south-east corner of the San Blas. We have gotten some laundry done, re-provisioned with food, water, diesel and beer, and carried out a desperate, but ultimately futile search for internet. The plan for the next couple of days is to check out Cayo Banderos, another "stunningly beautiful" anchorage, according to the guidebook, although I've yet to see any ugly cays so far! After that, we're thinking about starting to work our way west and also coordinating with our guests on their next move.

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