Saturday, February 1, 2014

We're Back Yeah!!!

After a lift from a friend... a train journey, a taxi across London, a bus journey, a night at a friends house, a car journey, a plane journey, a bus journey, an overnight bus journey, a short walk, another bus journey, a well earned overnight rest by the lake at Florres then a final bus journey we arrived at Fronteras; the main town of the Rio Dulce. At this point we wandered laden down to the dinghy dock at 'Brunos' hoping for no more than a cold beer before thinking about the final leg of our trip. What we weren't expecting was that the first person we laid eyes on would be Tom; the sailmaker who looks after our moorings. Tom has been emailing us monthly updates on how Impetuous has been keeping.  Luckily he still had stuff to do 'up town' as we had supplies to buy, so we agreed to meet back in around an hour. Just enough time to squeeze in that beer and a spot of veg shopping.
 
I had expected the 'lancha' (long boat with a big outboard motor) ride to be noisy with a risk of sun/wind burn to my English wintered skin, however it was much more pleasant than I'd imagined. Since Tom was going where we were, it was also much quicker than the public boat would have been. This would have been dropping off and picking up at many places along the roughly 12 mile trip, we were fortunate indeed. 
 


And fortunate is how we felt as we spied Impetuous' mast above the tree line and rounded into the Lagoon which had protected her whilst we were away. Cayo Quemado or Burnt Key is only accessible by water and is on the edge of 'El Golfete' a lake on the Rio Dulce in Guatemala. A tributary runs into the lagoon which is surrounded by swamp, jungle and mountains in the distance, it's a pretty cool place to be staying a few weeks...
 
Dunc; happy to be home!

In the week we've been here back with Impetuous, we've made a dint in the jobs we wanted to get done whilst we still have the benefits of dry land access, but the two main jobs are still as yet untouched...

Tom and his colleagues have been doing their best to look after Impetuous whilst we have been away; their service includes opening the doors and hatches on any sunny days, checking the boat monthly inside and out and giving her a clean when she needs it. This said we still had a bit of catch up cleaning to do once we were back. We've been gradually working through all the cupboards; emptying, thoroughly cleaning and wiping dry with a few spots of Eucalyptus oil in the hope of keeping them more pleasantly fragrant; we're told lemon oil is the thing to use but as we haven't any, this is our attempt. It's a very warm, humid and rainy microclimate here in this part of the Rio Dulce, therefore damp and mould can be a problem. This is nothing to do with the boat, just that the air is wet a lot of the time. It's why the jungle is so lush and the mountains are so beautiful and green.

We've found a few nasties... We had to throw away some of our food stores; the pasta had almost all gone bad from damp and much of our rice had critters crawling in it. We've managed to remain ant free whilst away, after having them marching in lines allover the boat since Texas.  However, we're slightly overrun with these... Anyone know what this is?  They're about 3mm long, best guess is that they came from the rice, thrived and are now to be found allover the place! The numbers peaked around day three when we'd disturbed many of the cupboards and are now thankfully appearing to decline...

My main job this week aside from much scrubbing has been to get the mast varnished. The arrangement was made back when we were deciding what to do about the mast; the deal was that if I wanted us to build our own wooden mast then it was up to me to do the varnishing at least once if not twice yearly... I'm holding him to it, it's fun up there!  One trip up to wash and sand, then two coats have been squeezed in between the showers. It could have waited, as the varnish was still in very nearly perfect condition but we figured it was best to get into good habits straight away.
 

Duncan has already made two new galley doors which we're going to stretch Rattan over the insides of... We're making good use of the mostly available shore power and workshop area. The owners keep some tools and spend much of their time tinkering there too, it's a very friendly and relaxed atmosphere here, we've been admonished more than once for working past 5pm... 
 
Now the mast is varnished we've headed back up to the town to stock up on food and drink for the next couple of weeks.  We haven't been able to post until now as the internet hasn't been working at burnt key.  We'll stay for Duncan's birthday today and then head back sore headed to our lovely jungle hideaway.   Our most important jobs are to make a dinghy and a main table, however as always the lists are growing...

4 comments:

jean said...

Just to say Happy 40th Birthday Duncan. Hope you celebrated with a nice cool beer

Mike Wagoner said...

Just good to know you made it and are back to enjoying your very special Impetuous Too. We have had some very cold weather for south east Texas but spring seems to be just around the corner. Course we all know you remember the heat conditions you were working under in your final month last year. We will see the same as always so your blog updates will be fun to read when it is too hot to work in the yard or garage!!! Take care as always - Mike & Ruby

Bird in a boat said...

Yayyyyy!!! Bugs and Jungles and beer and birthdays. Enjoy!

The Life Nomadik said...

Guys, happy that you are back in Rio Dulce! Unfortunately, we will not make it back there any time soon...our plans changed...But we still hope to see you some day some place.

Also, we just nominated you for a Liebster Award (not really an award but a way to connect with other blogs.) read more here: http://www.thelifenomadik.com/liebster-award/