Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Back in the U.S.A.

I just love the Tshirt message... Kolya's a redhead like
our sons James and Sean. He is 9 months old now.
We flew back to Washington DC from Guatemala City to spend time with our son James, daughter-in-law Morgen, and newest grandson Kolya. It was a fun week touring the city with them. They live in the Capitol district so we could walk to most things. Of course, we enjoyed many excellent meals at local restaurants and happily babysat to allow James & Morgen a few night's out. Kolya is a dreamchild - so easy to take care of and laugh with.
I had the pleasure of waking with him in the morning and can report that he's happy from the start of the day.  I miss him so much now that we've left and moved on to my sister's for a few days before returning home. Happily, he'll be coming with his parents for a good long stay in July! We can't wait!
But it's a pleasure too being with my sister Paula. And she is also coming this summer for a visit so good-byes are not so hard.
Happy Grammy and Kolya!

Kolya checking out the menu at the Rappahonnock Oyster
Bar down on the Potomac River - excellent!

And visiting the American
Pre-Raphaelites exhibit at the National Museum.

Taking a break at the museum's cafe..

But his favorite was the ARTECHOUSE's newest interactive
exhibit, "In Peak Bloom." by a group of women graphic
Here Kolya gently touched the hanging plants in the
exhibit to generate a music and light show

It was hard to tear him away!
Heather, Paula and our friend Judy out for lunch

Sunday, May 05, 2019

Final post this year from Belize!

Scott, Morgene, Marc and Heather
We met Morgene and Marc from Lianda at the Pelican Cayes earlier in the season and have enjoyed many fun times with them since. Morgene is French and Marc Belgian and Lianda a 57 foot Swan.
We did land trips to Dangriga and Hopkins and fun evenings on each other's boat. One day Morgene arranged a bread making class with a French professional baker (from another boat) - fantastic opportunity!
Renate was feeling well enough back in Vancouver after her heart attack in Belize that Jim decided to fly back and sail Emerald Seas south and back up the Rio Dulce in
Heather and Marc at lunch at Hamansi

The grounds and pool at Hamansi in Hopkins where we had a delightful lunch

Students gather to watch while Patrice gives a demo
Guatemala. Scott and I sailed north to meet him on his first night in Sapadilla Lagoon and then buddy boated with him all the way back to Tortugal Marina. It was a fun trip, although we missed Renate a great deal, and for a change, everything went well!
We had an easy trip across the bar at the mouth of the Rio Dulce with only a short time pulled over on our side to cross the shallow bar. And we managed to get Scott Free ready to leave with less than a week at Tortugal. Happily, as the weather turned hot, hot, hot. Jim, Scott and I had a long trip up to Guatemala City on 4/26  and all flew out the next day. For the second time we stayed at Las Americas Hotel and find it very comfortable and convenient. There is a large modern mall nearby with lots of dining options and the buffet breakfast at the hotel is good. They have a free shuttle to the nearby airport.
Now we are enjoying a week with our son James, daughter in law Morgan and new grandson Kolya, now 9 months old. After a few days with my sister Paula, we return home to Vermont!

We watched the master baker and then copied
his every move.

Scott makes a lot of bread but mostly in the bread
machine or the "no knead" recipe so this was
different. We had two risings and the second one was
overnight in our frig followed by baking it for breakfast.

Dinner at Wendy's to say goodbye to Uli and Imke from Eiland and Dani & Jens on Arwen. They headed north up to
Mexico and then Florida. Rick & Marsha from She Wolf and Roy & Dale from Wahoo joined us.

It was Heather's 74th birthday and we celebrated at Yoli's.
Our friends Rosie & Don from Chickcharne ordered a
beautiful cake!

Our charming waitress at the great
Garifuna restaurant Tuani we visited in Dangriga

The owner gave us a history of the Garifuna people. The
walls of his restaurant have paintings illustrating it.

Here's one showing the process of making cassava bread

Our host, our waitress, Marc and Morgene

Heather, Rick, Jim, and Marsha enjoy a fun dinner on board
Scott Free at Sapadilla Lagoon. Jim sailed down that day
from Cucumber Beach Marina to join us on a buddy boat
trip south to Guatemala.

Friday, May 03, 2019

Sean & Will visit Scott Free

Will, Sean, Scott, and Heather on South Water Cay at the bench
 This was a special year for us as our son Sean and son-in-law Will came down to visit us for the first time in many years. It was an exciting two week trip for them. The first week they visited Guatemala - Antigua, Tikal, and Flores. Then they flew some tiny planes into Placencia, Belize where we met them.
After a two night rest at a lovely beach resort, we all got together for a full day tour with Truly Wild Belize through the whole country by van up to the ruins of Xunantunich and then cave tubing. Great fun!
We enjoyed two nights anchored in Placencia and then headed out to Pelican Cay for another two nights. There we did some snorkeling, exploring by dinghy and kayak during the day and socialized at Hideaway Cay in the evening with other cruisers and our hosts: Dustin, Kim, and their daughter Ama.
Will and Sean watch the sunset with Scott Free anchored off South Water

Sean & Will at the summit of  Acatenango volcano near
Antigua, Guatemala. This was a grueling hike to over 12,000 ft. 
 Next, we spent 2 nights at South Water Cay out on the barrier reef. This reef is the second longest in the world after the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Sean and Scott went scuba diving one day and saw sharks, a turtle and manta rays as well as plenty of fish and coral. We also did lots of snorkeling and exploring. One night we had drinks at the EZE bar on the island and the second night enjoyed martinis on Wahoo with Roy & Dale and Scott & Tamara from Kookie Dance.
There was some discussion on where to go next but Sean solved the problem by suggesting we just return to the Pelicans and spend another night at Hideaway. And it was a lovely one with just our hosts. Next day Ama came out to swim and paint with us.
But it was time to return to Placencia as our week together was coming to a close. Our last evening we had drinks at Yoli's and then dinner at Rumfish. We were celebrating our 40th Anniversary the next day and Sean's birthday the day after.

And watching the sunrise over the ruins at Tikal

They flew a number of small planes in Guatemala and
Belize - 9 passenger and 4 passenger ones with Tropic Air. 
Will gives a thumbs up for their "private plane" to Flores, Guatemala from Guatemala City
To get to Xunantunich we had to cross the river on a hand
cranked ferry.
A series of gears made the job easy. Scott
gave it a try as well.
Our guide for our full day tour, here at Xunantunich
The stonework was very intricate
Heading up to the main temple which we were able to climb
Looking up the steep stairs
You can get an idea of how steep the stair is
The view over the plaza from the top of El Castillo, the main temple
Sean and a view of the countryside. The border with
Guatemala was only less than a mile away,.
You really couldn't have a problem with
heights and climb over these ruins.
And we got lots of exercise as well!
We pose in front of the amazingly intact carvings on El Castillo
The start of our cave tubing adventure! We
spent an hour exploring a series of caves
with an underground river.
Sean with Heather at the wheel
But then Sean takes charge
The morning we traveled out to the reef was misty and it
was hard to see the border between and sea and sky.
Heather, Sean and Maya work diligently at the drawings
The local fishing vessels are amazing - 8 or more fisherman
live on these tiny sailboats for a week at a time.
Our dinghy with Sean, Heather, and Scott heading into the
bar at EZE, South Water Cay.
Scott Free under sail from Wahoo
Sean & Will with Scott from Kookie Dance on Wahoo for
a Marini Night.
Scott and Sean scuba diving
Having a close encounter with a turtle
And a number of manta rays
Pluse a few sharks
Sean floating in space...