Friday, March 30, 2012


On to Culebrita for an exciting day of hiking to the top of the mountain to the light house, and then over to the rock formations called the "jacuzzi's" where there were many pools with little fish.  We had to push the dingy out into the surf to leave, Kirk hopped in and Nathan Sarah and I swam out to the boat.  It was heaven.

Lighthouse at the top of mountain.  It was a steep hill in some places on the trail.  We saw lots of lizards and hermit crabs on the trail.

Nathan climbing rusty stairs to top of lighthouse.  Nathan, kirk and Sarah went to top.

Donna and Kirk with a birds eye view of the Atlantic Ocean

Sarah, Donna and Nathan with lighthouse in back.  We think we were standing on the floor of a past structure.

Sarah talking to Donna standing in doorway.

View of our boat.  Notice the big rock formation beyond the boats.  The jacuzzi's are to the right of it.  It was fabulous.

View from top of lighthouse.  notice breakers all around the entrance

Looking down the rickety, rusty stairs of the lighthouse. Sarah's knee and hat in window.


view towards culebra

Donna (the white night)  in the rock formations building a stack of 4 rocks.  One for each of us.

the rest of these pics will be loaded at a future date.  the wifi is slow and is time to go.

View looking towards St. Thomas.  You can faintly see it below the cloud.
Sarah in the window well.
Nathan also known as Mr Daredevil himself.  Always has been.Sarah.  Need I say more.  Perfect for nathan
L to R little people:  Sarah, Donna and Nathan. Kirk was standing up on a ledge on other side. (I wonder where Nathan gets it???)
Notice the little pools that have filled when the water crashed in.  This pic was a wave going out.  It got rougher as the morning progressed and more water was coming in further.

Cactus growing out the side of rocks.  There were trees, various kinds of cactus, scrubs, tall grasses all growing on this one little rock peninsula.   Way cool.  There were green slate slabs and other colors in the rocks.  

catch up blog


fish Nathan pulled in

Nathan and sarah at the helm

Culebra was nice.  The first night we picked up a mooring just inside of a reef and so the view was of the Caribbean.  It was beautiful.  You can get so close to the islands and the water is still deep.  Nathan and Sarah snorkeled but it was not that good

this picture Sarah took when  they left Culebra.  It is of our first anchorage in Culebra.  We were up where the first split in the reef where the first peninsula comes out.  

Thursday, March 22, 2012

from puerto bahía samana dr to ponce puerto rico to the spanish virgins

Thursday march 15th

after a long day of waiting and watching planes get diverted, flights getting delayed 5 hours, nathan and sarah arrived at 10 pm.  their bags did not which presented a problem for nathan and medications, however with the supplies on board we worked through that.  then we spent all day friday waiting for the bags to be delivered.  there are many hoops and jumps in the dr to go through.  at the end of the whole ordeal, the bags were left at the entrance gate of the marina complex and we had to go pick them up via taxi.  so there were tips for the taxi driver, tips for the motoconcho driver who brought the bags from the town of samana to the marina complex.  it was about 4 pm when they finally got their luggage.  nathan and sarah immediately got into their bathing suits and went for a much anticipated  swim.

we had dinner at the itialian restaurant and then prepared for the passage from samana to ponce puerto rico.  across the infamous mona passage.    the longest passage we attempted yet.  about 185 miles.  close to 22 hours.

goodbye dominican republic   whale watching boats

we left samana at 9:30am  after much hoop jumping.   the comondante was scheduled for 8 am along with immigration, however at 6 am the comandante was knocking at the door.  we then had to wait for immigration and the fuel dock to open.  finally underway.  there were many whale watching boats just outside of the bahia de samana.  we saw whales 3 different times.  kirk saw one come out of the ocean.  i only saw tales and splash.  we tried for pictures but were too far away. was very exciting.

a long night making the mona passage.  thank you nathan and sarah.  i slept most of the day and night.  the motion of the boat puts me to sleep.  i wear the motion sickness bracelet so i do not feel so sick to my stomach but i can sleep non stop.  as crossing the mona goes we had a really good one.  at four am i got up and drank some black tea and then took the helm so nathan and kirk could get some sleep.   on to ponce puerto rico we went and got a few supplies had goodbye dinner with one white tree and left early in the morn to head to spanish virgins.

march 19th 2012

kirk got an email from kel today to call my dad.  we were in the middle of the carribean sea on our way to isle de vieques.  called my dad worried something was wrong.   HE GOT MARRIED. YAHOO  WAY TO GO POPS   we are so happy and proud to officially have carolyn as part of our family.  

more exciting news…..  nathan caught about a 3 foot barracuda.  first fish we caught in the ocean.  we were not sure if it was a cuda or a wahoo but we decided not to take a chance and let him go.  still exciting to reel him in.  pictures on kirks camera.  will post later.

we made it to a lovely anchorage at the town of esperanza in a little bay.  we were between  two little islands. one had an old sail boat hull on it falling apart and in town was a boat leaning up against the rocks with some bracing that did not make it through the hurricane  that came through in august of last year.  we went to town this morning  March 20th and were told he was the only one that did not pull their boat out and he dragged all the way into town.  we got a few groceries,  back to the boat, sarah and nathan went for a swim then we picked up the hook and headed out to sea towards the island of culebra.  

we can see St Thomas in the usvi.  oh my.  

we are now sailing and fishing (a first in this thorny path).  i think kirk is happy.  nathan is trying to catch dinner.  we shall see…

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

pictures of Puerto Bahia Marina

picture of the marina/resort from the breakwater.  our boat is behind the sport fish

another view

the outdoor lobby.  the first day we were here when we were dead tired we sat here and had drinks and talked with dianna.  it rained on one pier and not the other.  was pretty wild.  then we got a downpour which was great for rinsing off the boat.

view towards hill from pool  i love this hill.  it is filled with wild palm trees.  how cool.  i am going to try and paint over there if i get the time.

sunset looking over pool (right on waters edge) of the bahia de samana  (Samana Bay)

yours truly sitting on edge of pool  wine in hand

dianna and donna goofing off   actually balancing on pools edge.  we were having a good time.  we swam for a long time and talked and chatted.  kirk and ross did not swim with us at night.  

Monday, March 12, 2012

Life in ocean world


So here are the goods on ocean world

In the laundry room where they also do all the laundry for the restaurant, show and casino i think , there was this nice man.  He would sing sometimes and was most pleasant.  Anyway there was this big pressing machine.  Now I have never seen on of these before so I was most impressed.  For those of you like me I will describe it.  It has a bunch of rollers and a heated roller and belts that intertwine around these rollers.  You then feed the damp napkins, table clothes etc through all these rollers.  It dries and presses the stuff all at one time and neatly stacks the items.  I got such a kick out of this machine.   Well one day, he let me put my placemats, pillow cases and sheets through it.  The simple little pleasures.

The ponies were a plus.

We did take a taxi and went to some decent stores and were able to get supplies that we had not been able to obtain.


I bought some canned peas (kirk likes peas)  I tried to pick the ones that most matched LeSuer baby peas.  But I guess I did not do such a good job.  Anyone who knows kirk knows that he can judge food by it's appearance, I guess since he has not had a sense of smell for a long time.  Well he did not like the looks of these peas and when I told him he had to try them he was not happy but did try them and YUK THESE PEAS TASTE WOODY.   I laughed and laughed.

We bought grapefruit at the open air market and kirk said that his grandfather used to say  "THIS TASTES WOODY"  it was not sweet and not juicy.  Bummer on the grapefruit.

So the next day I cut up a pineapple that we bought.  It was not sweet like you would think it would be.  In fact I think I bought it in luperon and kept waiting for it to ripen.  Anyway, when he took a bite of the pineapple.  It was not good.  We laughed and said it tasted woody.    So woody became the word of the day for a few days.  I am sure it will rise again as the food is  very different down here.

When we went shopping we went to an open air market where the locals bring their goods down the mountains.  There was a grain sack (3 feet tall 18 inches diameter) filled with oregano.  I bought some.  The vendor just stuck his hand in the huge sack and grabbed a handful and put it in a plastic bag.  I got the best avocados, two of them that I have had in a long time.  They were perfect on the inside.  Heavenly.  Also some delicious red peppers.  Cucumbers not so good.

Most of the people were pleasant.

Here are the bads on ocean world    SALT

The salt spray from the ocean hitting the break wall sent a wall of salt your way constantly.  If you washed your hair and went out side it was gummy from salt like you had just gone for a nice ocean swim.

The boat was constantly covered with salt (makes for slippery decks) 

Now the killer.   It has ruined the stainless.  There is rust everywhere.  the counter top in the galley was a constant battle to keep the rust down. ( I finally ended up covering most of it with a towel so I had less to derust)  the screens looked like someone sprayed them with water when actually it was salt water.  The inside of the boat is covered in this sticky salty film.  I cleaned it so many times there and it just came right back.  I never knew salt could be so sticky but it is.


The boat was in constant motion from the surge.  To get on and off was like the carnival game where you shoot at the moving targets only the boat was the target and I was jumping on.


Pictures will be in the next post as kirk has my camera now 

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

left luperon arrive in ocean world feb 29th

we left luperon on a rainy squally morning.  we had quite a time with the comandande.  we had cleared out on tuesday with customs and port authority and went to visit the comandande to get set up for the  next morning.  we paid our $20.00 and got set up for kirk to pick him up at 7 am and bring him to our boat for an inspection.  it was raining cats and dogs and at the last minute he decided to give us our despacho (check out papers) without visiting our boat.  so kirk came back and told ross on one white tree and in went ross.  it was not raining as hard when ross got there so the comandante sent two trainees to come out and inspect both our boats.  is quite a circus, but the game you play.   you pay $20.00 each time you leave a port in the dominican republic.

out in the rain we went.  we were so happy to have the rain cleaning the boat, however, the seas got rough with the squalls and so we did get some salt back on the boat but nothing like the salt that was on the boat from the night crossing to luperon.

here we are riding the surf into luperon

the channel to get into ocean world was a little tricky with the swell and squalls

this is the channel on a very calm day.   the weather window has not long enough for us to leave though.  you can see the sand bar colored light green.  you kinda had to zig zag around and stick to the greens.  see how the red has moved into the shallow green water.

these horses are right next to the marina.  the first day here we got in trouble trying to get near them.  the day i was out taking pictures no one bothered me.  Is a mama, papa and a colt.  the colt and papa reminded me of our horse Barry with the blaze and socks.  was fun the watch them especially the colt and they certainly were in better shape than the ones in luperon.

maybe they belong to the 7 or 5  story houses on the hill right  behind the marina complex.  there is a bigger house to the right of this one.

every day we hear the south american sea lion show  2 times and the bird show once.  it is very loud and i could almost repeat the show myself.  it was fun the first 3 - 4 times.  it is driving kirk crazy.  this picture is from our boat.

this is Sir Richard Branson's boat Necker Bell.  it is huge.  we saw them in luperon, in fact ross gave them a ride back to their boat after being stranded at the dingy dock in luperon.  quite a small world.  he was invited on for a drink and since he does not drink he had a coke with richard.  ha  we met some of the staff in the reception area the other day.

view of our boat and one white tree from the pool deck, overlooking the sea wall and then to the ocean.  you can see the white caps.  it has been rough weather.  hopefully after this batch we will be able to leave on fri - sat and maybe cross the mona passage on monday   all depends if the weather cooperates

this is part of the facility,  this building houses a restaurant on the ground floor, a casino on the second floor, a show called bravizimo on the third and a night club and lounge on the forth (i think).  we have been to the casino and i made a 5$ donation and drank for free while we played.  kirk won big at roulette $30 or so.  we had a fun and it was free and so were the drinks.  you can't beat that.

the funniest part so far was our trip into puerto plata for groceries.  riding in a car is an experience by itself but when we were leaving we were stuck behind a truck being pushed by two guys riding motor scooters with their feet on the bumper.  it was so funny.  even the driver laughed.

kirk read me something this morning that went like this  in the us we drive on the right side,  in great britan they drive on the left, in domincan republic they drive on the best part of the road.  how true!

Saturday, March 3, 2012

luperon "the wild west" Feb 24th to Feb 29th

Luperon was a completely new experience. Diana of one white tree dubbed it "the wild west"  there were sidewalks and curbs and gutters but then the streets would be dirt. they would sweep trash (which was everywhere) into piles and leave it for the trash truck to come pick it up. which he finally did, was just weird to see piles of trash swept up and then just sitting there in the street

sometimes there would be "water" ( who knows what) flowing down the curb and then it would get dammed up by the trash and then mud.

motorcycles or scooters would zoom by racing up and down the street making all sorts of noise

 we bought internet connection in the front yard of the store keeper as she had closed and the lady at the store next door showed us where her house was.  The internet transaction was made possible by Nancy of Liberty who spoke spanish.  it took about 5 minutes.   down the street from the internet person were some horses so Diana and i wandered on down there so see the horses.  they were really just ponies, not in the best of shape but definitely did not look as bad as the feral dogs we saw.  they broke my heart.  so diana and i were talking to a young man on a motorcycle of course about where we were from and his parent live in brooklyn ny and so on.  we shook hands and introduced ourselves and he said his name was John Wayne.  We both just cracked up. 

Kirk was in the phone store for 1.5 hours to get a new sim card and minutes put on the phone. 
there was a herd of goats that roamed around.  probably about 20 or so.  the kids were so cute.  hopping around.  all different colors and ages.  one pregnant one that had to be having two any minute. 

The water was dirty, you had to buy water for your tanks.  yuk

shopping was a challenge.  very cheap, not much selection, nothing that you are used to.  

The country is beautiful.  green lush rolling hills.  so different from the bahamas.  the people were friendly.  some were helpful but not too much.

sorry no pictures.