On the morning of 21.3 we waived good buy to Shawnigans, on their way to Galapagos. We scrambled our last bits together and left as well, finally truly leaving Panama.
Beautiful day, sun but a little to little wind…..slow start( careful what you wish for…)
Got the big cruising chute out and we finally got going properly. Caught 2 fish the first day, a mahi mahi and a tuna.
We all settled into whatever one wants to do as more often kids feeling icky and at least one pukes….
Chris and I in the cockpit reading, kids on gadgets downstairs.
After early dinner we got ready for the night. All children in the back bedroom with a dvd. As the evening went on the wind started to pick up and the seas were building up….bloody typical. It was getting really bumpy and I could hear the kids roaring with laughter. They had all fallen out of bed….and decided that they will camp on the floor. Great idea.
They finally settled down and we were reefing in as the wind was now howling, the seas roaring around us. Not nice as we are out of practice on longer journeys and now had to helm the boat manually. All night. We took turns to grab sleep where we could but it was exhausting.
All night it howled at 30 knots and big seas and I was not amused. Pacific sailing! Suppose to be gentle, rolling seas! Yeah right. Chris said what I thought “ If this is Pacific sailing, we won’t be going further than Ecuador”
The night was long, with a sliver of new moon and finally dawn breaks in and things started to calm down and we are feeling better. It felt like yeah, we survived!
The next day we spotted THE whale. It was so beautiful, dancing around the boat, under, on the side, keeping an eye on us. Don’t know what kind of whale it is but got a feeling it was a young one. She was with us for 15 minutes.
The rest of the trip was pretty much uneventful. Just a routine of reading, sleeping, a bit of school and spotting lots of dolphins. I never get a good picture of them. Had a booby bird hiking a lift with us for 2 days.
As we came closer to Ecuador we started spotting the famous fish in boats that trawls around with no proper lights or AIS.
It’s always worrying as we never know what they are doing, how long the nets are as getting stuck in them won’t be nice. We zigzagged around them and realise there is nets in the water as well. But luckily they had lights on either end of them. Not big ones but wit a super sharp look out we were good, didn’t get caught.
The last night we ended up motoring , watching the coast line of Ecuador, all really excited.
Finally on the 6th day we arrived in Salinas. Slowly motoring to check where to go….
In the end we chose to pick up a buoy outside Salinas yacht club from couple of Ecuadorians we promptly named Mick and Pat. Nothing was a problem for them, nice people.
The next day we tried to start the check in procedure. Latest news on that was that no need to hire an agent. Great.
But reality is another thing. Chris went back and fort, fort and back with papers, phone numbers etc and nothing was coming together. We tried not to give in but after 4 days not getting off the boat we gave in, got the agent, paired $350 and the job was done in a day. I was just angry at the outcome as we have a budget and we can save money by doing things ourselves , we do. Little did we know at that time what Peru was going to be, lucky we didn’t as we would never had gone there with the boat. But more of that later….
I had my birthday stuck on the boat and bless them, Mick and Pat came over with a cake! What a surprise.
The next few days we strolled around Salinas, down the beach and felt how cold the water was. Gone was the warm Caribbean seas….
We also got our night bus ticket booked to go to Quito and a Airbnb sorted out.
Next update will be about Quito, the highest capital in the world.