Another Day in Paradise or Panama depending on your definition
20 December 2017 | Shelter Bay Marina
We were so totally exhausted from our days at sea and all the things we packed in at the marina, that we didn't even eat dinner. We were fast asleep and we almost slept thru till 7! It was so flat and nothing was moving here at our slip at the dock. We listened to the Shelter Bay Marina Cruisers Net and started cleaning up inside. We had the Panama Canal Inspectors coming at 11. Finally figured out the smell in the cockpit was actually an expired flying fish in the bottom of the dinghy underneath things and not visible. Mark used the Clorox after depositing the fish back to its home. Cleaned up the inside with the cabins for inspection. Then the one Inspector showed up around lunch time. There were many questions and discussions about transiting. He took pictures of the outside of the boat. Mark helped him measure the length and width and he didn't even look at our cabin area. He knows that we are working with Roy, our agent, who showed up afterwards. He had some great advice. We asked if he knew a sail repair company and of course he did. He texted them right away and the owner will pick it up in the morning. We spent time in the afternoon taking down the jib sail to be repaired. Mark found some water in the starboard bilge, which we bailed out. That needs to be investigated. Mark wants to put the dinghy in the water and go under the hull and check for cracks. Otherwise, it just may be the escape hatch that has been sealed multiple times that needs more 5200. Spent a lot of time and aggravation trying to get our wifi connection to work for any length of time...keeps dropping. It's horribly slow. Plus we can only use one device and password, so we got another one, but we have multiple devices. The picture we included was taken onboard from our slip at the marina. In front of our boat, because we are back into our clip, is pretty much jungle areas. Off to the coastline from here is multiple buildings that look like apartments. The US Jungle Warfare School was the originators, and someone told us that the local military trains there now. From our slip, it looks to be deserted buildings. We had a late lunch. It was hot and sweaty weather so we took a break and walked down to the pool. Lots of cruisers there. One in particular, took a job as a line handler for a smaller sailboat all the way thru the canal. He explained a few things that were good heads up. Apparently as a line handler myself, I need to be able to take the lines thrown at my corner of the boat and tie a backwards bow line knot really fast, as in within a minute...I need to start practicing. We talked about going thru the canal on the 27th but have given ourselves a couple more days to get the fixes done. Apparently, this is slow season for cruisers and any day we want to go will work out. Our agent will supply the needed line handlers. We met a penniless beautiful young woman from Alaska that was interested in joining us if we were going to South America. We said, Australia is our destination. She hitch-hiked the whole way here and is onboard someone's boat in the interim, taking care of it. Looks like 50% chance of rain for the next week. We have lots of company through out the marina for Christmas.