Sunday, 15 July 2012

thirsty bees and velvety waters

We rocked and rolled our way to Bahia Concepción. La Ramada was still waiting for the sun to rise when we weighed anchor. There was ominous lightning in the distance and the wind was blowing. Ever since I’ve become a sailor, lightning scares the hell out of me. Two boats we know who are currently cruising in Central America, were both struck by lightning these last few weeks. When a boat gets hit by lightning, it can sustain incredible damage – fried electronics and wiring, impaired thru-hulls – the list is long. It truly is a nightmare.

The rainbow connection
Rick reassured me that the lightning was too far away to be a concern. So we focused on heading north and felt rain for the first time in months. It was just spitting, but when you haven’t felt raindrops in such a long time, it is a novelty. Unfortunately, it didn’t rain enough to clean off our decks and salt-encrusted lines. The rain simply muddied the dust into swirly patterns. In time, a rainbow appeared, the skies cleared and we arrived in Santo Domingo eight hours later.

We were in Santo Domingo for one night. After a friendly chat on the radio with SV Seychelles, we jumped in the water. What a difference from the cooler waters in La Ramada. The water felt velvety. I can’t think of a more accurate way to describe it. There was no sharp intake of breath when we went from the heat of the deck to the refreshing water. Yes, we both readily admit that we have become wimps when it comes to water temperatures, after 8 months in Mexico.

The bees on the other hand, did not feel velvety. In some anchorages, I’m sad to say, bees can become your sworn enemies. This was one of them. They come to the boat sniffing out fresh water. If you have wet clothes hanging on your lifelines or an open cup of water, or a dripping faucet, the bees will be there. In droves. Luckily, they have only occasionally stung us. The next day we tacked our way down to El Burro, (still in Bahia  Concepción,) while swatting the last of the bees off the boat.

Rick fueling up for more socializing
In El Burro there is an expat named Geary, who is a retired meteorologist. He provides daily wind and weather forecasts for sailors (on the Ham radio). He also hosts a July 4th potluck barbecue/party for all the American sailors and expats in the area. We crashed the party by touting ourselves as the friendly neighbours. Two Canadians at a party held in Mexico, for a group of Americans. I have to admit that I felt much removed from the Mexican culture that day, but we met some fine people.

After a few social hours, we tucked into our cockpit for the rest of the evening and watched the glow of the moon creep over the horizon. Have you ever watched a moonrise? It’s not dramatic like a sunrise, it’s much more subtle. Yet a full moon appearing from behind a mountain can be breathtaking. All you dreamers out there will understand what I mean.

We eventually left El Burro and headed two nautical miles south, for the seclusion of Playa Santa Barbara.

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