Wednesday, January 6, 2010

All at sea VI

The 1st of January was frustrating.

I personal fault of mine is my lack of patience and sympathy with people who are hung over. I just think it´s pretty easily avoidable, and I resent when it impedes on my life.

The Plan was to sail to Turbo the evening of the 1st. With my desire to get through Colombia within 2 weeks, cutting out the sail to Cartagena, and then the loooong drive to Medellin, would be prudent for me. I was also eager to avoid another long sail. Turbo is south of Sapzurro, a 10 hour sail, and a 9 hour bus ride from Medellin, my first planned stop in Colombia. This was also good for Joe as he is motorcycling to Tierro del Fuego before it gets too cold to visit. And poor Lani gets outvoted but is so easy-going she seems ok with things.

I am ready to be off this boat. I have been for a couple days, to be honest. I am getting antsy about moving on, not wanting to waste my precious few Colombia days in a place I am ready to be gone from. I awake on the 1st, get Dennis moving, and promise to have the boat cleaned up and ready to sail if he gets supplies so we can sail at 5 for Turbo.

Something about living on a boat is that it´s easy to get stranded. If you don´t have the dinghy because somebody else has it, you´re stuck. Whether it be on the boat or on the land. Yes, I could swim from one to the other, and I did. But then you´re just you, in a bathing suit, and nothing else. So that´s just not very useful. This particular morning I was stranded on land with Lani. We did eventually hop on a launch that was kind enough to drop us off at The Fantasy though.

So I take it upon myself to get the crew going, and the ship cleaned and ready for sail. I´ll be damned if our sail is delayed because of something I had the power to change. Joe goes to land with the dinghy on captain´s request. So the girls get the ship ready, and then we wait. And wait. And wait. And wait. No word. For hours. I am getting increasingly more irritated with Dennis, and increasingly more worried that we won´t set sail that night.

Joe returns with empanadas! And the news that the captain has been drinking all day, but is still intending to sail! But he irrationally needs the money for the trip to give to Jack before we sail, so Joe heads back to land that evening, and returns with the news that Dennis is completely passed out. OF COURSE. I am livid. And so I go to bed.

There just isn´t any way that you can hurry Dennis along if he doesn´t want to be hurried, you know? So the next day we just continue to wait around. For hours and hours and hours. The other three went to land in the morning to get provisions for breakfast, but I was in no mood to be in Sapzurro, so I just stayed on the boat. They returned with the news that Dennis was still knocked out. He eventually showed up, and we eventually did set sail that night. FINALLY.

I slept for the sail again.

The next morning we got to Turbo, and I got the hell off that blasted boat! A couple of Colombianos, David and Ana, were headed to Medellin, so I tagged along. Dennis, one of his duties as captain, is to get passports stamped in and out. But he assures us that since it´s Sunday and the tiny Turbo office is bound to be closed, I can go along to Medellin and get stamped in there. I ask him, and other Colombianos several times, if they are POSITIVE this is alright. And they insist yes, since Medellin is the first place I could possibly get stamped in, it is no problem.

Turbo is a shithole and we get in and out as quickly as possible.

David and Ana are SO NICE. Like, unbelievably, exceedingly, mind-blowingly nice. We all share lunch and snacks and they take care of me completely. The ride to Medellin is through mountains and it is BEEEEEAAUTIFUL. I am SO HAPPY to see mountains again! I love the beach and the ocean, but I can certainly get enough of it. And I really quickly grow tired of the beach bums that gravitate to it. It is not my preferred way of life.

There is a marked military presence along the road through the mountains. I ask why, and David says that it used to be an extremely dangerous road. 8 years ago Sapzurro was taken over by guerrillas, and you could not traverse this particular road safely. So now the military is there for our security. And times have sure changed in 8 years. Colombia is as safe as any other Latin American country, and Colombianos are so eager and excited to see tourists coming through. They are so eager for more. And there assuredly will be more, because it is beautiful here, the people are indescribably kind, generous, and open-hearted, and honestly, it has the least potential for culture shock from the states.

Medellin is not at all what I expected. It is huge, and the closest thing to the States I´ve encountered in my journeys thus far. Of course it has it's slums, it's dangerous parts, but it is also exceptionally clean and modern, with the smoothest metro system I've been on in years. It's cradled in the mountains, its adobe and brick houses literally overflowing, ascending the hills surrounding.

And so I am finally here. I have finally moved on. But Dennis's shifty ways continue to hover over me as I discover problems with my passport. I have turned into an illegal alien.


Sven said...

Wow. So good to hear from you! Sounds like a great trip, I am jealous. Keep up the good work!

Elizabeth said...

The last few posts have been great to read. Thanks Laura. I'm so interested to see pictures of these people (and of you!), should you choose to post them.