Wednesday May 8, 2013
Things are winding down for us here in Port Antonio and we’re planning our escape to Cuba. Since we still rely mostly on Brian and Stephanie for our weather reports (and why wouldn’t we?, they’ve got it down pat), they found a window with winds mostly working in our favor that will help push us up the 300 miles NE towards Cienfuegos. These winds should give us a good push when we start, but then putter out and die before coming back strong in directly the direction we need to be heading. We figured we’d take the light winds with chances of motoring over certain motoring into headwinds. After Serendipity has shown us what she can do throughout the Bahamas and the windward passage, we’d normally think this passage could be done in about 2.5 days, but we’re actually going to give ourselves another full day due to the light winds. Plans are being made to leave tomorrow evening with arrival in the Bahia de Cienfuegos first thing Monday morning.
The past few days have been pretty open for us with no real plans until we tend to flock toward the pool area in the evening for a drink and internet use. I’ve spent the past two days ready to swear off sewing again as I make more adjustments to the connecting piece between our dodger and bimini, and also measure and fit covers for our hatches. With Serendip no longer being in storage or covered for seven months out of the year, the sun is really taking a toll on the acrylic and we need to shield them before they begin cracking. I have come to a realization in the past few days that my battle isn’t even necessarily with my sewing machine itself. We’re at odds with each other a fair amount of the time, sure, but we’re figuring out our issues and learning to work together (without even seeing a counselor!). No. My issue is with measuring. It seems like no matter what I do I can’t from measuring to pinning to sewing without it going horribly wrong somewhere in the middle. I blame it on working with mostly abstract areas which is not even a case for these covers but it must fit into the mix somewhere because the last one keeps coming out wrong. There’s a very ill fitting one sitting on the hatch over our salon at the moment, and although to me it’s good enough for who it’s for, I already lament the day it’s going to have to be removed and fixed.
In other preparations we took one last trip to the market today since we never fully stocked up after going through a good portion of our stored food in the Bahamas (can you believe we spend less that $100 on provisions in the six weeks we were there?). Again, we are absolutely terrible at deciding what we need to stock the boat but that’s probably also why we’re always the ones eating Ramen noodles while our friends enjoy afternoon snacks of goat cheese spread on crackers and topped with sun dried tomatoes. Although I now realize six weeks of Ramen noodles probably will give you a $100 provisioning budget. Anywhoo, today we were up to the task of filling the cupboards once more. We’re trying to get ourselves more into fresh produce and I’ve been picking up little things from our friends on meals to make so we walked through the market and stocked up on carrots, potatoes (which, I don’t know how they grow them, but Jamaica seriously has the best potatoes ever), onions and the like. Then going to a wholesale store we purchased three five lb bags of flour, 5 lbs of sugar, and a case of beer. To which everyone on the street thought they were entitled to grab one from us on our way back and we had to shoo them away before they were able to pull one out of the case.
For our last night in town here we were on the hunt for one last good meal. It should have been jerk chicken once more, I don’t know why we’ve now gone over a week without eating it, but we decided on pizzas at The Italian Job instead. Over food we discussed our future plans which do now include Rode Trip heading to the Mediterranean and us debating between Guatemala and Panama since we apparently can not get insured in Colombia. We’re excited to have one last new place with Brian and Stephanie although we’ll miss them terribly once they start heading north and east while we make our way south and west. But after already being separated from each other once I have a feeling that we’ll find each other again, somewhere, somehow. Jason joined us later and although Brian and Stephanie made their way back to their boat after eating, the remaining three of us went to the pool on more time. I popped a cork on a bottle of Trader Joe’s Sauvignon Blanc after enjoying Red Stripe on Jason, more payment for something or else Matt helped him with and I joined in on reaping the benefits. I also reaped the benefits of Matt’s hard work by turning Jason into my personal assistant on the website for the night since there were things that were driving me crazy and not only do I not know how to read html, but Matt is so fed up with trying to figure out the code for this website that he’s just given up. So we did a little tweaking, downloaded some new versions, and voila, you have the new version that’s sitting in front of you today (as of April ’13). I’m not sure if I’m 100% happy with the way it looks and I’m sure there will still be future tweaks, but at least it’s a start.