Jalan-Jalan Yacht

Tied in Trini    Trials and Tribulations!     8th December 2010

Well of course they are absolutely nothing compared to what you poor souls in the UK are having to put up with at present,  Freezing temperatures, huge dumps of snow, food shortages, fuel shortages, the economy going into a serious dip due to the fact that people can’t get to work and of course the huge gap that is opening up in the children’s  education due to school closures. Then of course their will be the knock on effect of parents either losing their jobs as they stay home to look after children who can’t get to school, followed by huge increase in demand on the NHS (already facing huge shortages in staffing, materials etc) as depression sets in. Course that will only be dealt with after the huge queues at A & E and fracture clinics are dealt with.  Ah the joys of Christmas fast approaching  in the UK!!!!!!

So for fear of upsetting some of you who are suffering all of this – here is a brief update of life in Trinidad where the wet season has forgotten it is supposed to be over.

Officially the hurricane/wet season ends on 1st December but this year there appears to be a bit of a time delay and we are still being treated to our daily downpours which can last for an hour or  3 or 4. Thunderstorms fly over and fairly rumble the soul.

However it is warm rain and the humidity is around 94% with temps in low 30’s.

By now we had thought that we would be in Grenada getting something planned for Christmas however we have met with a few hiccups.

The long awaited new galley was on the brink of being abandoned and we were going to cut our losses and just leave.  The refurbishment was partially paid for and agreed in June when we were here.  Templates were made and the firm who were commissioned to do the work seemed very organised and efficient.  So when we contacted them before leaving the UK to get a start date they suggested the 26th November.  Well by the time we finally caught up with them and had them not turn up several times we were getting a bit upset.  When they just stopped being in touch we used other routes. Contacted the marina they work out of – who contacted them and extracted a promise of Saturday a.m.  NO SHOW!!!!!   John sent snotty e mail on Sunday a.m. after another friend who does a lot of business with them had phoned and left a message about their poor performance on Sat p.m.

Sunday 1.30 in afternoon they appear to begin work.  After a few exchanges along the lines of  “You ain’t starting this job unless it is done in next 2 days.  Better still give us back our money and callit a day”.  Anyway long and short – they did start and they did finish. The two guys set to work and stayed with it till really late both evenings and they have done a good job so we are good to go.  Well now that all the cleaning up has been done (again!!!!)  Problem now is all the  other boats have gone and so we have to wait a bit.

The other boats went during a weather window when both winds were light and the sea swell was only 3 or 4 feet.  It is now back up to 10 – 12 feet and blowing from the wrong direction for us heading North.  Ce la vie.

There are still a few chores to do.  We have found some holes in the wood in the for’ard cabin which look suspiciously like woodworm.  When John went to buy treatment they had never heard of woodworm and have given us some noxious liquid which deals with termites!  Hopefully it will work – I rubbed it in and coated the side where the holes are and one wormy thing popped out. When I squeezed the little fink it burst open and spilled lots of fine wood dust (no I have no Buddhist tendencies!). Only hope I have got them good and proper – but the stuff really stinks.

Next job is to be hauled up the mast as John has managed to get a line stuck around the mast light. He’s spent hours wiggling and wriggling the thing but it won’t budge. I have a reprieve today as it is raining and will be too slippy to go up (my excuse for now) Manana.

Apart from putting liferaft back on its clamps and finishing waxing the hull we’re there. Ready to receive visitors whenever.

We took a trip to the movies last night to get away from the place for a bit – sometimes you just need to be away from the work that is facing you.  Saw Harry Potter  – thought it was a bit long and boring and the  slithery bits were enough to induce a heart attack so I kept my eyes covered till John said it was ok to watch again!!! UGH!! Shant rush to see who reigns supreme in the end  (it has to be a foregone conclusions)

The trip there was exciting as we went in a maxi taxi which got caught in the traffic heading downtown to Port of Spain.  Sat in the queue for 20 minutes before we gave up and got out on the freeway and crossed over to the other side then onto a pathway. – risky stuff.    Apparently driver was there for a lot longer. The main streets in the centre get easily flooded and everything just comes to a halt for hours and hours.  The driving here is quite mental but then so are many things.

We have a concert on Friday to hear Lydian Choral group do their Christmas presentation and then some Parang again on Saturday so reckon we will be quite Christmassy (probably homesick) on Sunday.

Hopefully however by then we shall be fully stocked, cleared from customs and good to go North.  There are a few boats planning to head that way then as well which will be good.  Sounds like Prickly Bay might be busy for a few weeks.  Given all the delays it doesn’t seem likely that the dive qualifications will happen pre Christmas. Guess he’ll have to put it on his things to do after your 60!!!