Sunday 15 February 2015

Compendium, guest written by Andrew

I have been aboard for a month now and it seems time to pen something.

So we have arrived at the Las Perlas Islands, 50 miles from Panama city.  It is a big relief to have finally got sailing again after 10 days in Panama. The canal was fascinating (25,000 dead from disease and accidents in the construction) but it is a long slow route from the Atlantic to the Pacific and once you have seen one lock the next 5 are all the same. I seem to be blasé about locks having experienced the mega locks on the Rhone.

Having arrived in the Pacific – a great landmark -we then spent 5 days in a marina on the Pacific side whilst we waited for the fridge to be repaired. At one point its internal temperature was 20 C, less than ideal! Panama city is dirty as the hills trap in the pollution with the consequence that Juno is continually dirty; this switches Captain Frew into frantic cleaning mode, which is tiring for him and us to watch and to help from time to time. Having said this the city is fascinating and the Panamanians ‘muy amable’ – you see I have had to extend my few words of Spanish as most people here have no English.

The non-sailing highlights have been very memorable. Contact with 2 local indigenous people; the Kuna Indians (second only to pygmies as the smallest humans) who live on the San Blas Islands and the Embera Indians who live in the Panamian jungle.  Also in Columbia we visited a fantastic coffee plantation established by Brits in the late 19th century, entirely powered by water pressure and using the same equipment today. It has had a colourful life including being occupied by Farc guerrillas.

It has been mentioned in earlier blogs that I am reliably stable, but they don’t know what’s going on unseen under the water; those ducks feet kicking away unseen.  I have just finished a book about a psychopath; I see some similarities, they had better watch out!

I have been sharing a cabin with a married woman; this is the first time for me in 28 years of marriage that I have shared with another man’s wife.  Some of the consequences of this were not being able to sleep naked; no snoring, folding my clothes and sleeping with the door open.  Anyway she has now departed and so I have the cabin to myself and can revert to type.  The next time I share, hopefully, will be with my dear Jeannette.

I have had an ear infection from diving in the San Blas, but having seen a doctor yesterday, I am well on the road to recovery. It would have been bad if I was unable to dive in the pacific islands.  Apart from this the month has shot by. It took a few weeks to relax into boat life after the hustle and bustle of departure; I was still completing tax returns and things when I arrived in St Lucia. But now I am on my way and things are good, missing some special people, but I know I will see them again in six months, which does not seem so far away.  We have many adventures ahead and can’t wait to share some with J in Tahiti in April.

Juno now comes a close second in my affections to my family! She is speedy, secure, shapely; everything a man could desire. That’s all for now.


  1. Love all the different blog styles! Keep 'em coming! Have an awesome time sailing in the Galapagos! Much love to all on Juno ,Katie & Jack xoxox

  2. We miss you too Bertie !!

  3. Such a lovely extract Andrew! Looking forward to reading the next!! WE MISS YOU! <3
    Continue to travel safely and keep having fun!! Kit and I are incredibly envious of your adventures! :) xxx