jueves, 25 de enero de 2007

Flying Squirrel in Ecuador

I have finally finished this round of varnishing the woodwork on Avventura. What is in all probability my least favorite of all boat chores is done for atleast six months now (hopefully I'll get a year out of it) after I put the last three of five coats on the outer rails today. Also fixed a leak in my inflatable dinghy and began planning in more detail the voyage ahead. Considering the fact that I couldn't start working till around noon due to an early morning rain and unsettled skies most of the day it was a productive day's work.

With the day's work done it was time to relax and find relief from the heat. After reading a bit by one of the yacht club's five pools (there are also five condo complexes here and a sixth being built) I started to wander back to the boat where a group of Ecuadorian kids were jumping off a wall into the water in the marina. Though the jump was only some eight feet, it looked like the perfect opportunity to introduce the Flying Squirrel to Ecuador, so I joined in the fun, and quickly had the group playing a sort of follow-the-leader. Whatever I did they had to copy. One of the boys was fearless and despite belly-flopping on a dive swore it didn't hurt (he also said he was the surfing champion of the group). I got a kick out f the fact that they called a flip a "matar" and was proud to have taught the group of kids the art of not only the Flying Squirrel (thank you Mudgett), but also the Can Opener (for you, Johnnyman). The kids couldn't seem to keep from belly-flopping on the Flying Squirrel which produced many a god laugh.

Tomorrow it's back to work polishing the stainless, making sure my dinghy patch holds, and whatever other odd jobs I can drum up.

martes, 23 de enero de 2007

Back to Work in Ecuador

It's been back to boat work here in Ecuador of late. Sanding more woodwork to varnish it anew, polishing stainless (ha!) steel, and general cleaning was the work for today. The rainy season has brought an influx of mosquitoes to the region and for the first time since leaving San Diego last April I'm actually getting bit. Time to start taking the dreaded Vitamin B. But couple the itchy bug bites with the humidity and heat at night and sleep isn't easy to come by. I was up till 4 AM this morning going through various storage lockers throwing out all cardboard (where bugs like to make their homes) and a couple old food items. I also put every screen I could find on the boat, which cuts down the airflow, but if it keeps me from itching all night it'll be worth it.

Tomorrow I begin the process of varnishing the outer wooden rails of Avventura which I sanded today. That means at least 7 coats of varnish since it's an area that is perpetually exposed to salt and very rarely rinsed off. I also need to finish polishing the stainless steel, find and patch a leak in my dinghy, and too many other maintenance tasks to list. I'm hoping to have the boat back in the water sometime early in February so I can go find some surf. Till then it's boat work and hanging out at the yacht club.

domingo, 21 de enero de 2007

Ecuador Return

Guess this is my first actual "Blog Entry" since all previous were sent as e-mails to various people. I am now back in Ecuador after a fabulous vacation home to San Diego where I was able to relax and enjoy time wth family and friends and also able to sell some of my books and make some more money to enable me to continue living the "cruiser's life."

The Ecuador I have returned to is not the country I left. The overcast and chilly weather of October is a thing of the past and bright sunshine, heat, and high humidity are now the norm. The conditions are now what you'd expect to find in the tropics (though the water is still only 70 degrees or so). I've spent the past couple days unpacking, getting the boat organized and liveable once more, and surfing a small wave I found in Salinas. Boat work lies ahead for the foreseeable future and manana I head to Customs to see if I can stay in this country beyond February 3, so wish me luck. Mike Bumbaugh will be flying in to join me as crew on January 28th. Will update when I have more to say.

Pura Vida!