Our last week in Roatan (hopefully)…

Friday morning we carried on with boat jobs before having a bobbing session with Charlie and Saundra in the afternoon – check out the size of that hip flask!

Later on we headed out to movie night at the cruisers’ tiki hut.    The offering was one of our favourite films – Point Break (the original) – and we were looking forward to seeing it again.    Everyone decided to order a pizza delivery so we opted for fried chicken instead as we weren’t impressed with the pizza last time.  We had a good time and the increasing British contingent – aided by the Canadians – kept the beer fridges open late again LOL.    

Saturday morning and we had emptied our water tanks so we finally got round to un-pickling the water maker and changing out all the filters before starting to fill the tanks again.  This takes a while as we only make eight gallons an hour so we are on a water-making fest at the moment.    When this was done I got on with cooking as it was time to prepare some passage food for the trip ahead.    Richard kept himself busy with other boat jobs – this time it was to repair the lock on the anchor locker using his new rivet gun….and to install another 12V socket on the chart table….and to service the anchor windlass.      By the middle of the afternoon there were four meals ready for the freezer and we were both feeling a bit jaded.  So we had a quiet night on board.

Sunday morning and it was time for more laundry.    When that was done we had a nice leisurely brunch before heading over to the beach and had a bobbing session with Charlie, Saundra and John.    

We stayed later in the water than usual and caught this beautiful sunset through the trees….and then ran for cover back to Morphie as the mossies were out in huge numbers!!!     We had another quiet night on board.

Monday morning and Charlie was taking his skiff into town so we went with him.   He is crazy fast and we all got a bit soaked on the way through the channel towards town. 

We tied to the dinghy dock and walked up the mud hill to the main road before getting a cab to the mega mall.  We withdrew some drinking tokens and purchased a SIM card to give us limited internet on board.  We are fed up with the daily grind of walking to and from the hotel lobby, especially as we often fail to connect.  We also managed to get some new fishing lures – we need different colours here to attract those baby tuna and wahoo – and then headed back to Eldons supermarket.   Charlie did a quick shop while we wandered around. 

On the way back to the marina we got soaked again…and rinsed our clothes through with fresh water to get the salt out when back on board.   We had a relaxing few hours before getting ready to go out.   A crowd of us headed over to Herbys, which is an American sports-themed bar and grill, in the Paradise Resort.    With all the TVs and sports paraphernalia it was difficult to believe that we were in Roatan.    Everybody chose different items off the menu and all the food was good…and they served supercold beer that was very refreshing.    Fun times.

Tuesday morning we made more water and checked the weather again.   The  window we have been watching remains favourable….woo hoo…..looks like we are finally going to get moving.    So we carry on doing pre-passage checks.   Charlie thought he had a problem with his mechanical shaft seal so Richard went off to help him while I continued cleaning and tidying.   After a bit of prodding and poking Charlie was satisfied that everything was OK and Richard caught up with me just before the shopping bus arrived.   We did our final provisioning and Morphie is now full…no more food needed!!!   

Later on we took ourselves off to the cruisers’ tiki hit and, as we walked along the beach, we came across Cheeky rummaging through the dustbins.    He saw us, immediately abandoned the bins and decided unusually to sit on Richard…..although did I get to stroke him.    He likes licking his head for some reason…and he stayed on his shoulders all the way round to the dive shop…when the temptation to break into the equipment room was too strong to remain with us.  We tried to get him to come back out but all we could hear were cylinder tanks clunking and weights being thrown around as he was having fun LOL.  

We had another beautiful sunset along the way too.  

At the tiki hut we enjoyed a couple of cold ones before heading back to Morphie.   And heard the horrific story of one of our fellow cruisers who had been bitten by a moray eel while snorkelling….it did a lot of damage and she ended up in the hospital having 20 stitches.  She was very lucky not to lose a couple of fingers.  

Wednesday morning and the weather window continued to look good so we needed to get our paperwork in order.   We ordered a taxi and took off with the others to the immigration office.   Along the way Charlie wanted to rent a 4×4 so that they could further explore the island – much of which is dirt roads – and our taxi driver found one for them straight away.   So Charlie and John followed our taxi with the rented truck while Saundra remained with us.    This was a lucky break as, when we got to immigration, I realised that I’d left the passports back on the boat.  Seriously????    Yep….had ben OCD about checking the paperwork before we left:  copies of passports;  copies of boat registration;  copies of photos of boat;   digital images of boat;  cruising permit – that I’d missed picking up the originals.    As you can imagine Richard was not a happy bunny.    But because Island Sol had hired the truck they could continue on while we returned to Fantasy Island so we didn’t disrupt their day.   Finally…back to immigration with passports in hand…and we get checked out with five days to depart.

Next stop was customs – to purchase the Zarpe form – and then the port captain.  Glad we had a taxi driver to show us where it was…would never have found it on our own.   Such a depressing office but look at the view from behind the street.    

We gave the captain our documents and emailed him the digital images there and then.   We were told Thursday night or Friday morning that our Zarpe would be ready.   We knew that this was a two day process so weren’t surprised.

On the way back we asked the driver to stop at the beer distribution place as there had been no beer at the supermarket the day before.   Result…got three slabs….and at only L17 a can (28 to the pound)…that’s not a bad deal.  

By the time we got back to Morphie it was lunchtime so I prepared the BBQ meal for later – stuffed peppers and chicken kebabs.    All sorted we chilled for a little while before heading over to the tiki hut.   We enjoyed our walk along the beach at dusk and meeting the local wildlife….and I had my Cheeky fix for the day.  

When we got there the grill was full so we had to wait for a while to cook but that was fine as we watched the sun go down.    We had another lovely social evening with Diane entertaining us on the guitar.  

Thursday morning and Charlie was heading to the Port Captain’s office as he had heard that his Zarpe was ready….so we tagged along in the truck.    Ours was too so we went back to immigration to give them a copy and yay, sorted, we are free to go.   They did spell our boat name wrong – but we not going to revisit this process to get that sorted.  I’m sure that our next destination won’t care!  

Back to Morphie I got busy in the galley as we were having island Sol over in the evening for a curry night.   Both John and Charlie are great cooks/chefs so didn’t want to disappoint.    I cooked a full-blown Indian meal with poppadums, sauces and chutneys, followed by three different curries, rice and naan.    While I was doing this Richard was sorting out a new halyard – we have an opening in the mast for a spinnaker halyard (which we don’t need) – so we have decided to pull another halyard through as a safety line for mast climbing or even a spare if one of our existing halyards fails.  This will give us spares for both our genoa and our main.   We were amazed to find a cruising boat willing to sell us a brand new unused one so we bit his hand off and purchased it.

Thursday night and the gang turned up after their day out exploring.    They piled into the food and absolutely loved it!   We loved the ice cream desert that they bought for us too.   Fun times.

Friday morning and I’m blogging while Richard is doing other boat jobs.     Listening to the weather guru this morning on the SSB we heard that there had been another pirate attack on a yacht near the Nicaragua banks…no details available yet although it sounded like the crew were OK.   We will be giving this area a very wide berth staying offshore by at least 30 miles and travelling in company with two other boats so there is some safety in numbers.    We need to discuss our strategy with the other boats but I think we’ll definitely get to our closest point to this troubled area during the night and may well run dark…and we’ll use a dedicated radio channel rather than hail each other on Ch16 (although we will obviously do a dual watch) in case the vagabonds are listening in.  

The plan is to leave Roatan on Sunday and head over to Guanaja.    This is a day sail away.   Then Monday lunchtime we’ll head off on the three day passage to Providencia.    The weather is looking really good as we are expecting north west to north winds throughout the passage before they clock back to the east….looks like winds could be brisk for Monday but then die down…so may be some motoring at the end but at least we have a sailing angle all the way.

Tonight we are heading to the tiki hut for movie night – the offering is Deep Water Horizon – which we’re looking forward to seeing.   No cooking for me today – curry leftovers are on the menu LOL.    

Tomorrow, Saturday, and I’m hoping that we can spend more time on the beach before we leave here.   Bye for now