Cruising with Vida Dulce

14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
13 February 2020
22 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
10 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
06 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
04 January 2020 | Islan Mujeres, MX
31 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
30 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
29 December 2019 | Isla Mujeres, MX
28 December 2019 | Isla Cozumel MX
26 December 2019 | Cay Caulker, BZ
25 December 2019 | Bluefield Range Cays
24 December 2019 | Placencia, BZ
23 December 2019 | Placencia lagoon, BZ
21 December 2019 | Placencia, BZ
18 December 2019 | Placencia lagoon, BZ
15 December 2019 | Placencia, BZ
14 December 2019 | Placencia, BZ
13 December 2019 | Placencia, BZ

Valentine’s Day Gift

14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
Susan | windy humid partly cloudy 84 degrees F
Our neighbor, a large sport fisher from SC usually fishes for only sailfish. They release everything else caught unless they want it to eat it themselves or to feed the families of their local workers. However, today they have several friends & family onboard for the long weekend / a holiday week. With winds calmer than they’ve been - just high teens to low 20’s - the guys of the group have a great day. Lots of fish caught most still flipping & flopping as they are hauled up from the hold.

This pix is of the small ones after the larger ones have been cleaned for storage or taken away for dinner. They graciously share these smaller filets with dock mates; we receive 2 filets of red snapper. A lovely gift of fresh fish for dinner; Jerry will cook it for our Valentine’s Day dinner. A treat!

The 1st of the Annual Spring-Breakers Arrive

14 February 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
Susan | windy, partly cloudy, 84 degrees F
Just before happy hour the pool fills with the first batch of exuberant obviously American grade school aged kids. As they whoop & holler & jump into the pool, parents head to the pool bar for what is very likely a much needed beverage.

This is the first wave of spring breakers, an annual much-awaited season for hotels and restaurants and tour guides and golf-cart rental companies everywhere that is a spring break holiday venue.

For us, I’m glad we completed our important downtown errand yesterday as the entire downtown area will be filled with happy, completely oblivious to where they’re standing families and groups, from now until summer.

Cheeseburger in Paradise

13 February 2020
Susan | windy humid partly cloudy 84 degrees F
Cheeseburger in Paradise is the Thursday special at the Soggy Peso. We stop in for lunch after our walk downtown and back then keep going to the grocery store Chedraui. By the time we’ve dropped what we purchased back on Vida Dulce and walked to the Soggy Peso it’s 2pm and 4 miles on a hot, humid day. Time for a cheeseburger (Jerry), tostada (me) & cold beers! Yumm..

Settling In

22 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
Susan | windy, partly cloudy, 82 degrees F
We’re settling in. After visiting other marinas and looking at available / soon to be available spaces (not many for a catamaran of our beam here…) we’ve decided to stay put. Other spaces are more exposed to the swell of passing tourist party boats, fishing and small ferry vessels, and the (lately) ever present stiff winds and weather driven seas, or they are far away from facilities. In this spot, it’s not easy to get between the dock and the boat - a giant step up going out and leap down coming back - and it is more expensive than one of the other alternatives, however we’re much more conveniently located to the restroom / shower, pool, bar-restaurant facilities than another same priced option. We’ve made friendly acquaintances with our dock neighbors and they walk by on their way out & back most days so there’s eyes on the boat if we need to be away.

Each morning we exchange friendly greetings with dock master Chepo as we walk about or he’s on the dock. Each mid-day we get out for a walk, either to the grocery store or, in the opposite direction, to downtown; it’s good to have the daily walk. We have yet to get to the pool for exercise or relaxation, mostly because we’ve been busy plus temps have been quite pleasant and the pool water is cold.

Last, our friends Charlie & Saundra, s/v Island Sol, will be headed this way within a month; they’ve stayed here before & fit into a space with a (needed) finger-dock. Being in the same place will make hanging out and getting together for adventures, etc super easy. So for these reasons, we’ve decided to stay put for now.

Shopping for Local Wheels

10 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
Susan | mostly cloudy, PM thunderstorms, windy! 82 degrees F
We’ve been talking about buying a scooter - we’ll be here for several months and it would be handy to have wheels for exploring, shopping, and so on - after visiting several rental places, learning that for the cost of several weeks of rental, we can buy one. So we started looking around. To date we have not been able locate a second-hand source so have been to the local Honda dealer and Yamaha dealer several times to see their inventory. We also looked at the one sold the grocery / house goods store, Chedraui. We talked about whether we’d sell it before leaving here or just take it with us to Florida.

After much deliberation we finally decide on one, a made in MX model, and went to purchase it today. At the Honda dealer we learn that to license it, we’d need a residency card. Hmmm…we went to the Yamaha dealer to ask them; the sales guy thought we’d just need proof of residence / being here, like an electricity receipt or perhaps the marina fee receipt yet he wasn’t completely certain. He tells us where the Department of Finance & Planning is located. It’s a 17 minute walk so off we go. The official word is yes, a residency card is required to license a moto / scooter. That puts a damper on the plan….

Corrections Can Happen When You Shine A Light…

06 January 2020 | Isla Mujeres, MX
Susan | partly sunny, 76 degrees F
I had warned Chepo that I would be writing 1-Star reviews on Trip Advisor, Google, Facebook, etc. And that he would probably hear about it since I would be naming him specifically in the reviews. If he had been smart, at that moment he would have taken out his wallet and reimbursed me. But he didn't. And guess what...? He heard about it, just as I predicted.

This afternoon the Administrator of the hotel & marina visited us accompanied by a sheepish looking Chepo. The Administrator said he understands there was some problem with the fee we were charged for check in. I reply yes, there is. A nice conversion ensued which included an apology, and then he took out his wallet and reimbursed me US $85 - the "tip" money and $5 because the office service charge is $95 (not $100...). At the very end of the conversation, he asked if he should reply to the Trip Advisor review - he doesn't really know how to do this, but the owner wants to know - I told him I would update my review based on our discussion and his reimbursement. We all shook hands.

I'm quite sure we're not the first people to have been overcharged, but perhaps Chepo will think twice before doing it in the future. He certainly now knows the power of an online review!
Vessel Name: Vida Dulce
Vessel Make/Model: Lagoon 440
Hailing Port: Seattle, WA
Crew: Jerry and Susan Barber
About: Jerry and Susan moved aboard Vida Dulce in late October of 2010. We are currently in the Caribbean.
Vida Dulce's Photos - Main
26 Photos
Created 20 October 2017
17 Photos
Created 2 September 2017
4 Photos
Created 15 December 2016
9 Photos
Created 17 October 2016
20 Photos
Created 1 September 2015
North Coast, West section 2015; Havana to Baracoa Bus Trip 2016
100 Photos
Created 15 May 2015
38 Photos
Created 11 March 2015
50 Photos
Created 25 December 2014
The road trip included 7 States: WA, OR, ID, WY, CO, UT, MT
16 Photos
Created 3 August 2014
Hurricane Season 2014
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 14 June 2014
Pictures of our stay in Honduras 2014
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 4 January 2014
10 Photos
Created 18 October 2013
4 Photos
Created 20 September 2013
Our Dec 2012 - Feb 2013 visit
55 Photos | 1 Sub-Album
Created 31 December 2012
Happy Holidays from Isla Providencia, Colombia
11 Photos
Created 31 December 2012
Photos of my on-board garden
16 Photos
Created 28 September 2012
4 Photos
Created 26 December 2011
Pictures of our time in Panama, Sept 2011 - Dec 2012
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 29 September 2011
Pictures of our visit to Columbia, May-Oct 2011
1 Photo | 5 Sub-Albums
Created 15 July 2011
Photos of our series drogue and May 2011 practice deployment and retrieval
24 Photos
Created 13 May 2011
Pictures from our brief visit to Bonaire, Curacao & Aruba in May 2011
35 Photos
Created 11 May 2011
Pictures of our short stay off Isla Pelona in May 2011
17 Photos
Created 11 May 2011
Pictures of our time in Grenada, April 2011
48 Photos
Created 23 April 2011
Pictures of our island stops in the Grenadines, April 2011
36 Photos
Created 4 April 2011
Photos of St Vincent, April 2011
11 Photos
Created 2 April 2011
Photos of St Lucia March 2011
46 Photos
Created 15 March 2011
68 Photos
Created 7 March 2011
Photos of Dominica 2011
3 Photos
Created 7 March 2011
Photos of Iles des Saintes, Feb 2011
12 Photos
Created 17 February 2011
Photos of Guadeloupe, Feb 2011
49 Photos
Created 13 February 2011
Photos of Barbuda, Jan 2011
15 Photos
Created 14 January 2011
20 Photos
Created 30 December 2010
2 Photos
Created 26 December 2010
Photos of Red Hook, St Thomas and Vida Dulce getting a new bank of batteries and the installation of her new custom made arch which will support 4 solar panels.
28 Photos
Created 9 November 2010
Haul out of Vida Dulce in November of 2010.
23 Photos
Created 9 November 2010
Lots of photos of various places not in other albums. Most are included directly in a blog entry.
27 Photos
Created 31 October 2010
15 Photos
Created 11 September 2010
A "Working" Trip with Jim to start outfitting the boat for cruising.
31 Photos
Created 10 September 2010
11 Photos
Created 5 April 2010
34 Photos
Created 5 April 2010