With the Aruba-Cartagena crew arriving in Porto Bello, and Cissy and I anxiously waiting for them. (we had arrived via Butterfly taxi service (Judy) from Panama), we quickly swapped stories. Hanna, and Scott jumped the taxi with Judy heading back to panama to make their connection with their flight home from Panama. Cissy, Jack, Ken and spent the few afternoon hours a few provisions, as much ice as we could and dinghy’d luggage to the boat to prepare for a early AM departure from Porto Bello to San Blas Islands.
We left at 10AM to sail/motor 8 hours to the San Blas Islands heading to Chichima anchorage along the way. Our days of sailing went fast and we loved the San Blas Islands and Kuna Indians. Each day we got in the water and did a bit of snorkeling. Cissy and I did a bit of trading (purchasing) on one of the islands with a lovely Kuna momma. She was very clear on how she wanted her picture with us taken. They experience only cruiser tourists and work hard to get you to select something they have made. We came home with bracelets and embroidered cloth called Molas.
Kuna Village on Holandes Caye (Island)
San Blas crew on the sand beach of Coral Lodge. www.corallodge.com
On our way back to Portobella, we sailed to Bahia Escribanos, a large bay with narrow entrance, and arriving and setting anchor around 2PM . We hailed Coral Lodge and Jake answered. Paul the “manager” was gone, but we could have ice delivered in one hour to the boat. We asked for fish to cook and Paul arrived with 4 small snapper and ice to cool our drinks for the afternoon. Paul, a great character, spilled more rum and coke in one short afternoon while on our boat than anyone could in a year! After countless stories, he had to leave to get back to the lodge before dark. Saturday, as pre-arranged, we were picked up at 10AM by the lodge boat, taken to the lodge and checked into our 2 cabana’s and then we were sitting down for lunch. We stayed at the Coral lodge for 2 nights. Our rooms were out over the water on a long dock. It was very elegant for such a remote place and they took great care of us. Jack and I took time on Sunday for a deepsea fishing trip with our guide. Jack took pictures as I caught several fish. The largest being a Red Snapper! Coral Lodge kept that fish, but we took the smaller mackerel that I caught.
With the help of the lodge, we secured more beer, ice, diesel and even wine before we headed back to Portobella where we would do yet another crew change. This would be the last crew change of the season.