Friday, November 25, 2011

It Looks Like Jeorgia Measures Up

We picked up the anchor from muck of the Las Brisas anchor this morning and headed over to the other side of the Causeway, to La Playita. Here we had a date with the Admeasurer for the ACP (Panama Canal Authority). Ricardo, the measurer came onboard around 10am and spent about 45 minutes chit-chatting with us and filling out forms. They want to know if you have a working toilet, bottled water for the Canal advisor, strong cleats and lines and working horn and engine. All good. So Jeorgia was issued the Panama Canal Ship Identification certificate, above. It stays with the boat, even after we sell her, and is used on all future transits. Then we were off to the Citibank to pay the $1,500 in cash to go through. The actual cost is about $650, with the rest used for a buffer in case we damage their canal – like running Jeorgia intro one of the 100 year old cement walls and knocking it down.
Oh, yea, Chris got back from Nigeria --- to a warm welcome – even with her African cold.
Straight to the cruisers’ Turkey Day at the local Pizza restaurant.
lasbrisasDSCF0874 Table of suspects.
Chris looking for the dark meat.

The plan is to transit the Panama Canal on Dec. 4th. Then spend most of Dec. in the San Blas Islands.
lasbrisasIMG_9325 An out of sequence sunset shot.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sister, this ain’t Kansas anymore - repost

Here's some pics from Chris' visit to the Emir's Palace for the Salaha celebration. Sorry I don't have good titles for these, but they were too cool to wait till Chris got around to putting in the words. A little touch of Nigeria.
 a contingent of the emir's men(1) a contingent of the emir's men all the emir's men 1(1) all the emir's men 2(1)  all the emir's men 3(1) all the emir's men 4(1)  arabian horse!(1) grandchildren of the emir 2
The Emir’s nice and nephew grandchildren of the emir head dresses 1 young girlshead dresses 2 head dresses 3 head dresses 4 horse and rider 2 horse and rider 3 the girls air force academy the girls- Paulina, Asabe, Asma'u (L to R) Chris’ co-workers
the parade with palace and spectators behind the view from the roof
The crowd that didn’t get invited in

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Sister, This Ain't Kansas Anymore

Reposted, with the pics

Jeorgia Gets Greener

Added two more solar panels to Jeorgia’s  electrical generating capability. It only took about 6 weeks to actually get them on and running, but they are doing a smoking job now. We now have 340 watts of solar. I bought two more panels from Sun Electric ( in Miami. I went with them because I wanted to match the two existing panels already installed and they have cheap panels. Used Gente de Mar ( to pick them up in Miami and ship them to Panama. After a few delays, mostly caused by Sun Electric, the panels made it down to Panama. They, of course, weren't the panels I ordered. Same wattage, but different manufacturer. Oh well, too much hassle and cost to return them.
 solarIMG_9199 Here’s Ollie ‘this place is a sheet hole’ the German welder, welding on a new upper stainless rail to mount the panels on. He also built custom panel mounts to attach them with – this project got dragged out way too long.
So now, with the help of a little bit of Sun, we have happy batteries by noon. I figured the whole job would cost about $600 – it came in at closer to $1000. It means the pay back when we are in anchorages is probably a year. When we are at sea, it means we can keep up with the autopilot, chart plotter and radar for a lot longer before having to charge with the main engine.

Monday, November 14, 2011

theONION Breaks Important Sailing News

Man To Sail Around World To Decrease Awareness Of Important Issues

November 14, 2011 |

"I hope to use my lifelong love of sailing to take part in a completely irrelevant novelty stunt that in no way benefits humanity," Gilmer said of the non-news event that will needlessly cycle in and out of the top spot on news websites for weeks. "The goal here is to really make people think about a young, overconfident asshole on a boat rather than any pressing matters of substance that actually affect people's lives.",26640/

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Minor Update

I did another trip over to the Las Perlas Islands. It’s about a 35 mile run to the first anchorage. The trip over was a slow, slow motor boat ride. Slow because Jeorgia’s bottom was covered in an infestation of hard barnacles and green slime. The hull and keel were covered with finger tip sized barnacles – thousands of them. Under the wing keel they were fifty cent and twenty cent sized. We had 3 days of really nice, sunny weather and clear water that let me spend hours diving the boat and getting her clean again. I went out with Judy and Torbin off Tivoli, out of San Francisco. That’s Tivoli above in one of the evening thunder showers.
It was really nice to get out of the Las Brisas anchorage for awhile. Its a nice place, but you just don’t want to be here too long. Too much city, too many long term locals…… One of the locals, Ollie, the German welder, who is doing some welding for me to mount some additional solar panels, refers to the place with his German accent as ‘A Sheeet hole’. This anchorage starts growing barnacles on your anchor chain in about 3 days.
Torbin cleaned the bottom of Tivoli also. They use the same bottom paint we have, Petit Trindidad SR. There’s is about the same age as mine, maybe a few months younger. There bottom looked a hundred times better than mine. Must be the shady neighborhoods I hang in. In Jan. we are going to haul the boat in Shelter Bay Marina on the Caribbean side and put nice fresh black bottom paint on her – once I figure out how to get it shipped to Panama.
The sail back from the Las Perlas was a rambunctious beat to weather. First 10 kts of wind, then 20, then 6 then 14, then 18, then 6. A tiring 8 hour tacking session.
On a more sobering subject, the US Embassy in Nigeria just put out a set of warnings. It focuses on the capital, Abuja, and the main business hotels there. Supposedly they have info that the Boko Haram are planning attacks. These are the local bad guys who want to implement Shariah law in Nigeria. The name apparently translates to “Western education is sacrilege”. So Chris was planning a meeting over the weekend at a town not too far from where she was staying. In the end, they all decided that it would be better not to be traveling on the roads. Certainly better for Chris, so she didn’t have to bare the wrath of me bugging her. The attacks seem to be timed for the Sallah celebration at the end of the Haj, the annual trip to Mecca.