Day 39, Garbage, Internet, and Pizza.
24 April 2012 | Guanaja, Honduras, CA
Monday, April 23. Day 39. This morning we returned to town to try to get internet set up. George of Silver Sea came with us as he had a stick set up Saturday and it quit working Sunday. We all took in bags of garbage to dispose of. It seems there is a “garbage boat” and you can just throw your garbage on board. It gets hauled away and disposed of periodically. Now I'm thinking, if we find the WRONG boat and throw our garbage in and then the next cruiser does the same and the next... Well it probably wouldn't be very funny for the boat owner, but the scenario got me chuckling. As it turned out,just before we got to town another cruiser in a tender (too big to call a dinghy) came by. George held up the bag of garbage and the cruiser pointed. We followed him to the correct boat and disposed of the garbage. As we pulled up to Zapata, it was a mob scene. Big cayugas going every which way. I found a small opening just big enough to nose into and tie up. The cayuga in front of me must had had several 1000 oranges and nearly as many bananas that the girl was selling from the boat. I bought 20 oranges for 1L each. Then we went to the store where George bought his stick and met another couple there who said the owner was a computer guru and make anything work. The store, however, was extremely busy and he was constantly being pulled away to do this or that. It was going to take a while. Fortunately I asked if he had a stick to sell and he said, “No”. That made my choice easy as I went down to Miss Angie's. The store was open, it was empty, and she had a stick. Bingo. I also noticed a sign on the wall that advertised “International calls to US, 60 min. for 30L.” That works out to about $0.03/min. So I got a SIM card for the phone as well. While Miss Angie was setting everything up, I plugged in the stick to be sure it worked. (Other cruisers had recommended this as sometimes things were not set up right and if you had your computer with you, they could fix it then saving you another trip to town.) After it installed all the software, it said “you must register SIM card first.” Ah-ha. Glad I brought the computer (in a dry bag, of course). No, it was just that I inserted the SIM card upside down. Second try, the software comes up, I click “Connect”, it dials, and redials, and redials....Just then Craig & Liz walk in saying that the signal is down and so they couldn't get there stick set up. Well, that explains why mine doesn't work, but I still don't know if it is OK – probably because it was dialing, but.. The bill is more than I expected. Apparently a few weeks ago they had a promo where you got the stick and 1 month of internet for 500L. Not now. Stick, 850L with 1 week free. One month, 500L, but she can't add that now as the signal is down. Oh well, we do a little grocery shopping. I find some Haas avocados, grapefruit, and really good looking green beans. George checked his phone (which did work) – still no signal. So we found a bar and had a beer (it was nearly noon – in fact, the worry was that we would not get a signal back before noon because everything closes down from noon to 2:00. We did and we went back to the store and got everything set up correctly. Back at the boat, I fired up the internet and Deb started calling US. Then I read the message that said the plan didn't start until after midnight. Now it isn't clear if all calls must be made after midnight to get the low rate or just that the plan doesn't start until midnight tonight. We will hope for the latter. I downloaded more books for my Kindle. I now have 76 Dr. Who books, 68 Star Wars (from various authors??), and 30 Star Trek, in addition to the 12 Douglas Adams, 15 Isaac Asimov, 7 Kurt Vonnegut, and 7 Arthur c. Clark, well you get the idea. I have plenty to read. Word got passed around the anchorage that everyone was going in for pizza tonight. It seems that Manati, the local German restaurant, is closed Monday, so another German ex-pat opens his place for wood oven pizza only on Mondays. It was reported to be buggy, however, so we brought the Thermacell. It worked and we were the most popular table at the place. (Picnic table outside in the sand.) The beer was cold and the pizza was good. (You just ordered “pizza” it only came one way and that was more or less “loaded”.) We had a great time chatting with other cruisers we had not met yet. Kurt on Catalyte who now lives in Rio Dulce, had run a sailing school in Placencia, Belize, and had chartered Always one time. He is headed for Bocas and may end up leaving his boat in the little marina next to our house. It never ceases to amaze me what a small world this is.