44´ Catamaran Sailboat
After Colie left, T-Bag and I lurked around Panama City for a couple of days until we could figure out transportation into Colombia. Unlike the rest of our journey, a dirty bus ride was out of the question. There is no road between the two countries because the Darien National Park. Very near the border, there is a region called the ´Darien Gap´ where drug runners and kidnappers like to hang out. While it would have been cool to pay them a visit and maybe drink a beer or two with them over a round of poker, we chose a different option.
The most popular mode of transport is to hire a sailboat to take you from Panama City to the Colombian port town of Cartagena. After days of searching, we finally made contact with a boat captain who would facilitate our crew, which now included: T-Bag, Me, Dancer 1, Dancer 2, and three Aussies we met surfing in Bocas. Our boat was scheduled to spend 3 days in the San Blas archipeligo, and two days at sea sailing to Cartagena. Now to pass the couple days until the boat leaves...
Our obvious first choice (with persuasion from the
dancers) was to visit strip clubs and casinos. We soon found that what we are accustomed to in the states does not bounce in Panama. Taylor soon found himself with an offer for ´one hour or the whole night for xxxx amount of dollars´. Luckily, he was able to pay for performance, so got by with a 2 minute sess.
Finally, our departure day came. We had to take a 4-wheel drive taxi at 4am through the Panamanian wilderness. We crossed multiple streams and muddy river beds until we arrived at the Carribean Coast. Our captain was an interesting fellow, who likely had spent too many days at sea. Strangely, he was sailing with a young Chilean girl as his first mate. This seemed strange to us that this young latino was hanging out with an old weird dude, so we figured something was up. His first rules on board were ´no drinking or smoking´ and the dancers flew into an uproar as mutiny was already being planned. Luckily, the Chilean had Captain Michael wrapped around her finger, and the rules were changed slightly.
It was thus quite funny for all of us to see the Captain pounding
Taylor sweating all over our bed...
Tequila shots and the quiet little chilean girl running around topless a couple hours into the night. We all looked at eachother somewhat confused, and went to bed to the sound of them arguing and her saying ´no I wont do that. You are OLD´. The next morning, we had to go back to land because the chilean was ´no longer welcomed aboard´. Ha ha...
Anyways, the next couple days were great. The San Blas is a chain of white sand little islands with indigenous people living by and fishing the waters of the Carribean. Everywhere we anchored, there was a beautiful coral reef a couple of strokes away. The water was warm, and fish were all over. Some of the best snorkeling I have ever done took place over the next couple of days. I even snagged my first couple of fish on the speargun! Regardless, pictures speak more than words in this case...
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