February 13, 2010

Salty Ginger

It finally happened. We have left Cartagena! I started to wonder if it would ever happen. It seemed like all four of us had swallowed the hook. We made new friends, had our favorite hangouts and fell into a routine. There was always one more reason to put off leaving another day. On Tuesday we handed in our passports to check out of Columbia and early Wednesday morning Alex woke up with Strep throat! Yup, you heard me Strep! Poor kid. Seems if something is going to go wrong it is going to happen to Alex.

We called our Columbian doctor and he remembered us right away. He told me to go to the pharmacy and get Alex some Azithromycin. I wrote the prescription details on the back of a gum wrapper and off I went to the pharmacy. I was totally shocked when I handed the slip to the pharmacist and $2 dollars later I had the medication and was off on my way??? Crazy eh! I ended up going back and replenishing my first aid kit with Cipro, Amoxicillin and more Azithromycin! All of them cost only a couple dollars each.

Ok, back to Alex.....he took the medicine and a doctor on another boat (Siren's Song) checked him out and we decided that we would leave today since he was feeling better and I have penicillin on board if he happens to take a turn but as I type he is up on deck in the bosun's chair flying around the boat on a rope. Needless to say he is feeling much better.

The good news is that since we had waited to depart we heard that another cruiser was selling their Airline hooka scuba gear! Turns out it had only been used twice and was a steal of a deal. The hooka rig allows the kids to scuba dive without having to rent and carry the tanks. They can scuba anywhere now! You can just imagine how excited they are and I really like that I will always know where they are and they can only go down so far as the line will allow.

Leaving all our new friends was hard. We all became close with an Irish sailor named Dave. He was really funny and the kids were always happy to see him coming over. We also met up with friends on Solange that we met at the Pitons and they had 2 boys. They were traveling with a boat called High Five and they were also awesome and had 3 boys around the kids ages. We had a huge party for Graham's 40th and had 14 people on board for it! Fantastic.

Regardless today at 9am we sailed away. Amelia got on the radio and sang "so long and thanks for all the fish" to all the cruisers as we left. I begged the universe for a calm day to build my confidence with and the universe delivered! Beautiful flat seas with almost no wind. Not a sailors delight but definitely a "Julie Delight". Within the first hour Alex had caught TWO TUNA. yup you heard me right. TWO. He put out a line on both sides of the boat and voila! Totally crazy. Unfortunately I didn't have my 50% rum with me to knock them out with and I didn't want to part with my Captain Morgan's, so Graham got out the fish bonker and things got a little brutal on the back deck.

As we approached the Rosario Islands, Amelia asked if she could go up the mast and guide us in. There was a ton of reef surrounding the islands. Graham reply's, "No problem". Much to my horror. He hoists her up to the first set of spreaders and there she sits, perched on spreader. I am at the helm and already stressed when I see the depth go from 35 to 5 and now I am also worrying about Amelia dangling from the mast. (Can't wait to post the pictures)

Turned out to be "a once in a lifetime" day for Amelia (her words). As she is up there two schools of dolphins surround our boat in the flat seas and dance with us. It was really unbelievable. We could see all the detail on their bodies and faces. Very cool. From Amelia's vantage point she got the whole show in HD!

We anchored Artemo and had the inaugural swim. We are now all waiting for a loaf of banana bread to cool and tonight we can all look forward to Tuna. I think we will stay for a day or two and then off we go to the San Blas. Alex's best friend Kayvon and his sister Tara and mom Martha are meeting us there on the 22nd! Very exciting our first guests who sleep over!

In regards to the "Salty Ginger" title......Uncle Bob came up with this name for our boat but of course there was no way Graham and I would rename our beloved Artemo. The kids really wanted to change it though, so we compromised and named the dinghy "Salty Ginger". Now whenever we are out and about on the dinghy with the hand held radio we are "Salty Ginger" and the kids use every opportunity they can to make radio calls with this name.......yesterday we heard a call come out on the radio "Salty Ginger, Salty Ginger, Salty Ginger, this is Naked Lady, Naked Lady, Naked Lady"! Got love cruisers!

ps...we posted our first position report!!


  1. I love the name "Salty Ginger" loved to read your blog and know that almost all is well. Just make sure that Alex takes all of the medicine don't stop just cause he is better. Have fun and enjoy the tuna, I had some for lunch but bet yours will be better.

  2. Great post! I'm glad you guys are enjoying yourselves and I miss you all.

  3. happy to hear you're having fun. Amelia's HD dolphin show sounds amazing! Hope Graham had a good birthday :)

    Can't wait to see the pictures.

  4. Tell Alex I had strep last week to...it isnt fun. I could just picture Millie hanging from the sails. what a brave girl. Your trip is sounding more like a luxury vacation these days.What a great name for your dingy. I cant wait to see the pics. Stay safe Trese

  5. HA - I JUST READ THIS POST. I CAN"T BELIEVE I MISSED IT!! That is a great name for your dinghy. Do you want me to drop by sign-a-rama and get a sticker made up for you?

    Let me know!!

  6. hey, you crazy ralph malph,, i'm here on tour with harry nichols talkin about ya,, i hope all is good,