Captains Corner

Monday, January 14, 2013

Happy New Year 2013 From Costa Rica!

Happy New Year everyone.  We wish you all good health, peace and love in 2013.  And to all our boating friends, calm waters and safe travels.
We returned to L.A. in mid-December to celebrate the holidays.  There were so many boxes delivered to the house during our absence and I thought they were “presents”.  No, they were full of boat parts that we can’t obtain in Costa Rica.  In fact, when we packed to come back on December 29th to celebrate New Year’s Eve in CR, we had 5 suitcases with well over 250 lbs. of “boat stuff”.  Plus, two carry-ons.  One of the suitcases contained only ONE item.  A huge island float that holds 6 people.  Hopefully we’re not lugging this, for nothing!!

Our friends joined us on December 30th.  We picked them up at Liberia airport and proceeded directly to Playa de Coco to provision.  We shop at the Auto Mercado, which is an American/Canadian type of market.  Everything is very expensive in Costa Rica, especially at this market.  $780 dollars later (without ANY liquor in the basket) we were ready for anything.  Don’t fret, liquor was already in abundance on the boat!!
See what we mean!

 We went to the Four Seasons Hotel for a New Year’s Eve party.  Heaven and earth needed to be moved to get these reservations.  Thankfully a friend with a lot of clout made the arrangements for us.  We were told it would be totally impossible to get in.  That it was exclusive and only for hotel guests. As it turned out, it was a very sedate crowd.  There was a mediocre band and singer. The food was good and the fireworks were spectacular!! But we needed more so we decided every time someone said “HAPPY” we would drink.  Do I need to tell you what the bar bill was?  Here we are!!

Happy New Year 2013

 On the 1st we were totally out of commission and recuperating from the party.  We were able to get our slingbox working and watched bits and pieces of the Rose Parade.

On the 2nd we took the boat to Bahia Huevos, a gorgeous anchorage, for the day.  Lucio blew up our “Island”.  It took a mere 20 minutes with an electric pump!!!  It turned out to be great fun!  We swam and wiled away the day, returning to the Marina to find our friend Gary from the Finisterre sitting on the dock awaiting our landing.  The rest of the Finisterre crew, Tom and Kenny, arrived that evening.
Bahia Huevos.

Our "HAPPY" Island.  We named it.
The guys had a car so we went to Coco back to the small Italian Restaurant we visited on our last trip here.  It is nestled in a small boutique hotel off of a dirt road about one mile off the main street in Coco.  You would think you were in a third world country getting to this place.  Even though we were there before having our friends and the guys with us made it very special.  It was so special we hired a car and went back the next day!!  There really are very few places to get a good meal here!!
Yes this a photo from the last blog!
Everyone was on board The Elysium for a day trip to Playa Hermosa the next day.  We ate, drank, enjoyed our “island”, and returned to the slip to party the rest of the evening on the Finisterre…with an unexpected guest.  The ugliest, biggest damn grasshopper we ever saw.  Tom grabbed it after it jumped into the boat and bounced off of Jewell’s arm.  He scared the crap out of us by holding it in front of our faces.  The women on the boat were screaming.  I’m surprised we didn’t push Tom and his friend into the water…where he belonged!!!!

Tom and Gary.

Kenny and Tom.

We made this, it was so yummy.

The guys are so funny!

You can't read Debs lips right?  HOLY S....!
We spent one day at the beautiful Prieta Beach Club, which is a private club.  Our Marina has some kind of a deal with them which allowed us access for the day.  It was quite nice.  Several pools, a great view of the ocean, and good food and drinks.  
It was so pretty there.
On the way back from the club we encountered an entire family (or two or three) of Howler Monkeys.  Small babies to large males.  They were swinging in the trees.  What a sight.  Something you certainly don’t see walking down the streets of the San Fernando Valley.

The winds here are unbelievable.  We’ve had gusts up to 100 miles per hour.  Nothing can be left unattended on the boat or it flies away!   One day we took a trip on The Elysium to Coco and anchored for the day.  On the way back the winds gusted so hard we had spray from the waves on the fly bridge.  One of the very large pillows from the bow of the boat flew away.  We put Lucio on the skiff to go and retrieve it.  He was bouncing around like a cork in the ocean.  We were laughing uncontrollably as he chased the pillow and finally retrieved it (at least a half mile or more away from where it blew off!)
Just outside the marina.
The pillow Lucio chased.
In the Marina the winds were so strong (at least 100 mph) it was very difficult to walk.  One of our Strata Glass windows (a hard type of marine plastic) tore away from the hull and we now have a nice (not so nice!) hole in the gel coat.  We removed all our windows and stored them in one of our guest bedrooms.
It tore right down to the fiber board under the gel coat.

Look ma - NO Stratta Glass.
The Finisterre left port on the 7th to make their way South.  We were all pretty bummed as they departed at around 7:30 a.m. (their version of “at the break of dawn”).  We saluted their boat with horns from New Year’s Eve and a few miscellaneous body parts.  A great send off, unless they are now blind!!

Our friends departed on the 8th and we are now making our plans to continue south.  We’re leaving here mid-January and returning again sometime in early March. 

Have an adventurous few months.  Live for today, tomorrow may not exist!!