June 10, 2007 Sunday
BEBE was splashed at the boatyard on Friday afternoon as scheduled. Spice Island Marine Service did a great job; what a difference from our “haul-out from hell” at Independent Boat Yard in
last year. This time everything was done
exactly right and on schedule. Pleasure
doing business at SIMS and we would recommend them to anyone contemplating a
haul-out in the West Indies.
The only “problem” that we encountered had nothing to do with the boatyard. We purchased another 80 feet of high-tension anchor chain. We plan to use this to extend our current chain to a total of just over 300 feet because we will be anchoring in deeper waters if we go to the South Pacific next year. ACCO makes a single chain link that connects two sections of anchor chain. It has 2 little rivets that you pound in with a hammer to secure the connection. We needed one 10mm single chain link connector, but there is not one to be found on
Grenada. Every chandlery is out of stock on this
particular size. They have the 8mm and
the 12mm, but no 10mm. We cannot
substitute a 12mm connector link because that would jam in the anchor windlass
gypsy. Budget Marine showed that they
were supposed to have received 10 of these connectors in their container
shipment received last week. But after
searching through all the boxes received, it was decided that these were
backordered with no definite delivery date provided. So, for now we have stored the new 80-ft
section of chain in the deck locker near the bow where we store our 2 secondary
anchors and rodes. Maybe we can find the
correct chain connector link in Isla Margarita (doubt it) or in Cartagena (doubt that too) or in Panama (probably).
Yesterday we took the bus to the
Lagoon Road and did more boat-stuff
shopping. Found a wonderful 24V
oscillating fan, which we will use to replace the stainless steel 24V trucker’s
fan we brought down from Houston
last year. The original fan is making
noise and is expected to die at any time.
This new fan puts out so much air that we will try to go back and buy a
couple more to have for spares. BEBE has
9 fans built-in. We had mounted the
trucker’s fan onto an old cutting board and attached a long electrical
cord. We can move this fan all over the
boat and down into the engine room to provide extra ventilation whenever
working in the heat. We also sometimes
use it in our aft cabin when the weather is exceptionally hot or if it is
raining and we cannot open the hatch or ports.
This new little oscillating fan puts out much more air than any of the
Hella fans or the old trucker’s fan.
This little thing is a keeper.
Ed and Linda on DREAMTIME have lucked into a sweet deal. They are anchored in front of a resort here at
, and they became
friends with the owner of the resort.
The owner went home to the states for the month of June, and Ed and
Linda are dog-sitting for him. They have
been given a hotel room at the resort (although they prefer to sleep on their
own boat instead). They are hosting a
pool party for a select group of their cruiser friends this afternoon and we
are invited. This should be fun. I have missed lounging around a swimming
We invited another guy over for dinner tonight. His wife has gone back to the states for a month to visit the kids and grandkids, so he is on his boat alone doing the bachelor thing. Thought he might enjoy a home cooked meal.
We are waiting for a FedEx shipment of Bill’s prescription medication that should arrive in
early this week, so we should be able to pick it up by Wednesday –
hopefully. Receiving packages in a
foreign country is much different than back in the states. FedEx will deliver a waybill and a copy of
the invoice covering the contents of the package. This will be delivered to the boatyard since
it was the only land address that we could utilize in Grenada. Then we will pick up this paperwork from the
boatyard office and take it to the nearest Customs office which happens to be
on the opposite side of from the
boatyard. Customs will verify our boat
documentation and our clearance papers into Prickly
Bay Grenada. I will complete a form stating that the
contents of the FedEx package will be coming aboard our boat and will be
leaving Grenada bound for Venezuela. We get the paperwork stamped by the Customs
officer and take another dinghy ride back across
to the boatyard. We tie off our dinghy
and walk about ½ mile to catch a bus to the FedEx office in downtown Prickly Bay St. George’s. There we will spend at least an hour (if we
are lucky—could be a lot longer) collecting our package and paying Customs fees
for it. Then catch another bus back,
walk a ½ mile to the boatyard and collect our dinghy. And all this time the FedEx website will show
that our package was delivered on the day and time that they delivered the
waybill to the boatyard office. Tracking
international packages online is a joke; you cannot believe anything.
charges duty of 37%!!!! The Customs
officers both at the Prickly Bay location and at the FedEx office both told us
that the duty will not be collected on Bill’s scripts but that we will have to
pay some customs fee----supposedly it won’t be much, but neither Customs
officer could tell us how much “not much” will be. So we arrange for the invoice accompanying
the FedEx package to state a lower value than the $2200 that this script
actually costs. Unfortunately, the
medication that Bill takes daily to control his ulcers is not available down
here. We have not found it anywhere
except in the USA. The same drug is available in tablet form
everywhere that we have visited, but Bill’s doctor wants him to take this drug
in capsule form. So we are stuck with
getting a 6-month supply shipped to us twice a year. Thanks to John, Helene, Trey and Aaron back
in Texas for
dealing with this for us. Don’t know
what we would do without their help.
Once we receive this FedEx shipment there will be no reason for us to remain in
Grenada. It should be a nice overnight sail to Los
Testigos from Grenada.