Saturday, June 20, 2009

Reggae time

After one idyllic day sailing, we got the photo negative on the next day, with the wind dropping completely at 8:00 when we arrived at the Windward Passage. And we had to keep motoring until the next morning when we were able to help the engine with the main sail, then with the genoa, and it is only 25 miles from Port Antonio that the conditons were good enough for sailing only.
We entered the bay of Port Antonio too late to hope to clear quarantine, customs and immigration. But we found a slip at the new Errol Flynn marina. This is my first visit after more than 20 years and a lot of things have changed, not the pleasant and cordial welcome from the locals.
We tied up but could not get any of the facilities (wifi, water, electricity) as the office was closed. We could still use the bathrooms which are clean and well equipped.
After a good night sleep (although the music never stopped from the various open air night clubs) we started Saturday with the intention to use the day to do the formalities and start provisoning.
Well, that was if the various people involved in the clearance would show up.
The manager of the marina showed up as promised at 7:30 a.m., except that I had forgotten that they have one hour difference and my watch was already showing 8:30. It turns out that the electricity is not at the proper frequency and might damaged the air conditionning, the water is at 15 cents a gallon and the marina at 75 cents a foot. We have plenty of water (we used an average of 3.75 gallons a day between the two of us), we have the genset to run the air conditionning if we wanted to and the solar panels are providing up to 20 amps for most of the day. So, as soon as we are cleared, I intend to go to the moorings across from the marina, which are only 10 dollars a day and we can still use all the marina's facilities (wifi, laundry toom, showers and bathroom AND a swimming pool.)
David emailed us that he will be arriving next Saturday afternoon, so we are planning on leaving Port Antonio for Colon on Sunday morning, unless a hurricane is visiting the area.
Late in the morning, the Quarantine officer showed up andgave us our clearance (against $20 for overtime) but we never saw customs or immigration. I suppose that we will have to wait for Monday morning. Does not matter since the manager assured me that we would not be charged dockage as long as we are not cleared.

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