Friday, November 30, 2007

Driving, Shopping, and our new Crew Member!

Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we had a rented car to go exploring and to go provisioning. Monday we drove to Marina Del Rey near Fajardo on the northeast coast. We talked to the yard about haul out and paint as we are due. They are pretty expensive AND require insurance which we lack so I guess we’ll wait for St. Maartin like nearly everyone else is doing. Sue plotted a different route back than we took. Probably quite scenic if you weren’t white-knuckling your way around hair pin turns in the dark on overlooking the ocean! Took awhile and we got pretty lost finding our way through an industrial town just east of here. Driving in Puerto Rico is beautiful though. The mountains are right here and you have to drive through them to just about get anywhere.

The roads themselves are in great shape. 4 lane to lots of places. But, now a word about Puerto Rican drivers. They don’t use the left lane for passing. No. The drivers use the left lane for driving 20 miles an hour under the limit while talking on a cell phone. I’m serious. There is no getting in the left lane and just going with the fast guys. There is constant back and forth with passing on both the left and the right. Keeps you busy!

Tuesday we drove to San Juan about 75 mile north to visit the old town and the fort. The old town makes for interesting walks and the fort is built right on the ocean I guess to repel invaders. Didn’t keep us out though! Oh boy did we get lost trying to find our way back out of town. At one point I think I was about to pull into a big truck terminal. It is kind of exciting when you can’t really read the road signs either. I wonder what “Pare” means anyway. . . ?

The pictures above shows a cemetary that is right between the ocean and the fort. Still used (although they must be burying people verticaly!) as we saw a procession enter the cemetary with a new dead guy.

Wednesday was the big re-provisioning day. We started by rearranging the boat down below. We are planning to buy canned food for 6 months! There is always more room than you think if you can get rid of some stuff you never use (winter clothes!) and rearrange things. Now it’s off to Ponce where there is Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, and Santiago Cash and Carry. We heard reports that you can get a one day pass at Sam’s Club. You can’t. So we went to the local Cash and Carry which also has case lots of food. OH man....what a place. It’s like a Home Depot for food. We filed a large cart like you would use to haul lumber. Check out is fun because they don’t have a scanner but they do input the SKU number. . . by hand! Probably took a half hour to check out. $450 later we are off to the Grande supermarket to get some things that Cash and Carry didn’t have. $150 later and we are heading back to Enee and the car is definitely over loaded! Now the big job. Hauling everything back to the boat in the dingy (more than one trip) and getting it on board and stored away. We refuse to allow any cardboard from stores on board for fear of picking up little roach stow-aways. So I opened all the cases on deck and put cans into some plastic bins we had found. Other cans were stored in various drawers and lockers that we had cleared out. Now, about any drawer you open on Enee Marie you’re going to find food! When we go ashore now we’ll only be looking for fresh things: eggs, bread, fruit and veggies. Prices will not be cheaper than they are here for a long, long time so we feel smart to have done this big shop.

We ended our day by taking our friend Peter to the airport in Ponce. Finally back to Enee. What a great day!

And now. . . .with no further ado let us introduce MISMO the wonder cat! Yes, we finally found a little crew member. Mismo (ok, this is spanish for ‘the same’. Like when Sue orders a Medalla and the waitress looks at me I just say mismo! So, Mismo is a stupid name but we just like the sound of it - meesmo). She was rescued out of a mudpuddle in which she and her brothers and sisters were drowning. The woman who rescued her thinks maybe the mom left the litter and then it rained and filled in the depression where she delivered them. Mismo and one brother were saved and the rest perished. We hope that is a dim memory for her and she won’t be freaked out by living on the open seas!

(The above is a Picasa Album if you really like terminally cute pictures of kittens.)

Of course kittens are pure entertainment. This one is really tiny as you can see. The vet said she is probably only about 1 month old and has just recently gotten a few teeth. She is very friendly and likes to be held and cuddles to take naps. She likes to bite our toes but I think that is because toes are the only thing that are at eye level for her! We made her a little box and she crawls into it to sleep. Well she did until she figured out that we were sleeping in a more comfy bed. Last night she would squeak (no real meow yet) until we picked her up and put her with us in bed. So stay tuned to watch Mismo grow and see her learn the ropes! Oh yeah, she already figured out the kitty liter box after only one mistake. . . on me while I was napping! I love cats!

Finally, just for fun this is a short video from the deck of Enee Marie to give you a feel for sailing the Caribbean.


Anonymous said...

Scott & Sue,
Your book was revioewed in the most recent edition of SAIL magazine. I bet the orders are comming in now! Keep up the great work on the blog, we read it as often as we can.

Bill & Mickie

LeahC said...

just reiterating my love for your new cat. i HAVE to get an airline see the cat not you guys of course :-)

Running Jayhawk said...

I want Mismo!! What a sweetheart. LOVE HER!!!

JayG22 said...

Everything was great until the video! Now I have Island Fever!

Thanks for the blog! It is great!

Deborah said...

Welcome to your new crew. She is to cute. So glad you made it to the fort. Brian, the girls and I just loved Old San Juan.

Rich P said...

NIce video. Reminds me how much I resent you guys being down there, given we're having an ice/snow storm here in Chicago.

And about the deserve every little "mistake in you lap" you get for getting another cat. I wouldn't have on aboard unless it was a mechanic!

Brian said...

I'm crying out for leadership. What does the Chairman have to say about this?