I Claim This Land…
29 October 2022 | Domburg, Suriname
Having done Brazil..... well, about 5% of Recife, we headed off to catch up with our Dutch cruising buddies on Red Max who were in Suriname, checking out their old colony.
You really have to admire the sheer brass neck of the early European and British explorers. These bold adventurers went around the world claiming countries, if not whole continents, in the name of their then present king or queen. The modus operandi was then to implement the Viking business model, or indeed, the Putin model and basically murder, rape and pillage until the locals were adequately subdued then ship their country's wealth back to the "mother country".
In return the locals would get inadequate accommodation, just enough food to survive, paid, or more likely unpaid employment, measles, typhoid and STD's.
To add insult to injury these "superpowers" would then play swopsies, "Hey, I'll swop you (or indeed, swap) Suriname for Manhattan. How about that?"
Suriname is South America's smallest country and something of a melting pot, populated by the descendants of escaped African enslaved labourers, Dutch and British colonialists, Indian, Indonesian and Chinese indentured labourers and indigenous Amerindians.
Sitting in the luxury of Recife's luxurious Cabanga marina I thought Suriname was just around the corner, albeit the north east corner of South America, which is quite big, and it came as another surprise that it was yet another mega passage of nearly seventeen hundred miles to the mouth of the Suriname river where of course, having knocked ourselves silly with multiple sail changes to squeeze out an extra knot or, we arrived at midnight and dawn was at the wrong end of the tide.
Consequently, after waiting on time and tide we motored up the river to where you find us now, twenty miles from the sea and just off the yacht club at Domburg.
We are moored off some suspiciously large houses (Suriname is apparently quite well situated on the drug trafficking route). One of these houses was playing some very loud music the night we arrived and, pretty tired from our trip, I was on the verge of giving them some, "I say chaps, how about turning it down a bit?" when one of the party goers walked down to the water's edge and blew some fruit bats out the trees with his pump action shotgun.
I'll just use the old ear plugs I thought.