Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Arrived at Bonaire

01 June 2007


We entered the marina and was directed to the fuel dock as we needed fuel and all boats go there to check in before allocated a berth, once fueled and berthed we caught a taxi into town to clear in at the Police Station. First time using my form and it worked well, the officer was very friendly and helpful. The marina was not far from town so we walked back.
In our berth at the marina)

We  are trying to get onto a wireless network (Wifi) but we need to contact someone to do it and sign up to ensure a good signal. Today I got into the freebies and it looks like they shut them down during the evenings.

I had to go and take my first mate to dinner to a nice restaurant. Today we went into town to look around, I think we were at the smart shopping between 12 and 2 pm when shops are closed, people here have siesta during these times and then the shops are open late after. It has not saved me the plan is to go shopping Monday.
(Sea Cow which is also a restaurant where we went for dinner)
 (Nancy having a well deserved drink and dinner at  marina restaurant)
(Our lovely waitress, she was very helpful with information regard the town)

A bit about Bonaire, it is a pretty place the people here are very friendly and helpful, most of the island is flat with the exception of the northern end that has a national park that is 164m above sea level, but majority of the island is about 5m above sea level. They have very strict environmental laws; no boat is allowed to anchor unless it is an emergency. They have set up special mooring buoys along the waterfront that you can secure your boat to if you do not go to one of the three marinas.
 (The buildings are very colourful)

 (The main street, between noon and 2 pm you could fire a shotgun up the street and you would not hit anyone, siesta time.)
(Nancy window shopping, to bad the shops are shut during siesta time)

They claim it as the diver’s paradise, but one local said to me today that Australia is the number one dive paradise and Bonaire is number two. The bloke that said this owns a hairdressing salon where Nancy went for a haircut, he had to translate to his staff what Nancy wanted and she wanted her hair short, the girl would cut and Nancy said not enough this happened a couple of times then Nancy said HOMBRE! So the hair was cut very short. She has very thick hair and with the heat and having to wash it on board it is more comfortable short. His comment regarding the dive sites could be mainly due to the different size of the two countries. They have very beautiful coral along the shores as you can see by the very light blue water, but you do not need to go far off the shore before you hit very deep water and that is why they are so protective of their environment. They claim also to have the purest water here, they mine salt from the sea and they do this through desalination plants, one of the features as you approach the island is the salt mounds. Around the southern tip of the island they also have the buildings that used to be used as slave huts from the bad old days. We want to travel down there and see them.
(Karel's Pirate Steakhouse and Pirate Bar)

(Nancy with her short haircut and her sangria at the Pirates Bar)
(The Pirates Bar)
(Nancy likes these sangria)
(Moorings off the beach on the sheltered side of the island)

At this moment I am pleased we are not at sea, the wind is howling from the east, I would say it is pretty rough out there. We will sit tight until this blow is over. We have the big full moon again tonight and that is giving the heavy seas out there, it is the double edge sword when the moon rises as the sun sets and visa versa the following morning, the moon has the forces of the sea. The sun is directly one side of the earth and the moon the other. This combined with the currents of the Caribbean Sea and the constant east winds, makes life very interesting.

One thing I have noticed in our travels is that the local people of all the islands we have visited are very proud of their country and they display that fact car with flags etc.

(Kids fishing off the dock, that's our dinghy under there)
(Coffee and milk bar on the end of Karel's dinghy dock)

That brings everything up to date so far I think. Tomorrow is another day and we will bring you up to date. Once we secure a wireless net we will download some more photos in the albums.

Again I thank those that are sending comments it brings us closer to home, I hope you are enjoying ours. I have been told that we have a different spin on things with Nancy’s blog and mine, Nancy has the advantage of writing things down in the log, I go on memory and the way I see it. I think that’s healthy that we do have a different spin. The other fact is that things do happen so fast and when you sit down to type or write you try and piece everything together. We are not making things up it is just what we remember.
Eileen you are a sweetie with your comments and helpful info on the emails, love ya. Rick you get well soon I know Lu would be looking after you, Colleen good to here your comments, pleased to hear the trucks gone, retirement now, get out and enjoy, we are. Clare thanks for the updates, give Heidi and Noel our love and the new born. Our family the girls have added a few comments Angela is out there sailing on weekends learning the ropes so to speak, good on ya. Great photos of the new grandchild from Carla and Angela.  My sister Jeanne prints out the blog to give to my dear mother so she can see how silly her son really is. Love ya Mum.

Telephones…We have found that the mobile phone in some of these islands are not working out that well, so we have disbanded that idea. The satellite phone is good but expensive, we also have to charge batteries for all our gadgets, phones, cameras, and laptops, and this is done through an inverter from our boats battery supply.

At the moment we have the satellite phone switched on (Australian eastern time) 9 am for 2 hours and 8 pm for 2 hours, outside of these times leave a message. The main phone system we are using is through the laptop, it is called Skype, this is a free program you can download off the net, once you sign up (free) you then can buy Aust. $16 worth of credit, and the calls cost .027 cents per minute. The only other outlay is the cost of the headset with mic; I bought ours at Dick Smiths before we left $50. The benefit is that a call to other Skype member is free. When you are talking it shows you how much you are spending. Calls to mobiles are a little more expensive. The only drawback is that if we are going through a free wireless net we drop in and out a bit.

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