Friday, June 22, 2007

Georgetown, Exuma, Bahamas

0 nm
Wind: calm in morning, faint breeze out of south in the afternoon

Yesterday, we were zooming around all day on the high of accomplishment. We got so much done--or at least I did. Posting the pictures was a huge accomplishment. I was excited to finally figure out the dang software, even if it did take a lot of evil glances from the Peace and Plenty gals. I’m not even sure if there were many evil glances. It’s probably just my guilty conscience for stealing internet. We shouldn’t even be using their internet there, when there’s a shack with internet down the street for $3 a day.

Literally a shack. Probably 10 by 20 feet, with five children of various ages pushing each other around in strollers and office chairs, and a few lazy flies buzzed around the groceries lined along the wall: pigeon peas, cake flour, Joy dish detergent. In the corner, a big, black recent Dell computer spilled its innards. The proprietor, a handsome young man in gray coveralls, oblivious to all the kid activity, was the most helpful person we’ve met yet in the Bahamas. He offered us a CD to burn our important documents too, and printed them for the exceedingly fair price of fifty cents a piece. We had heard other cruisers warning us about this place, saying under their breath, “It’s actually a... shack!” Best internet shack I’ve ever been to.

The fatal flaw was the lack of air conditioning. I think I could have hacked it, but this heat has been brutal on Karl. The last couple of days have been gruesomely hot, with about 100 percent humidity. One expects the occasional thunderstorm to break the heat up, settle it down a little bit, but all the rain does is force the front hatch to be closed. Then, as soon as the brief wind after the thunderstorm lets up, the heat huddles back down again, like a bird going to sleep.

So that’s been tough on the motivation. It means Karl has a hard time sleeping. This morning at dawn he actually went for a swim and tried to sleep with his head resting on the swim ladder. It was a bad sign. The lack of sleep and the oppressive humidity make it tough for us to be motivated to go into town at all until about two, at which point we only have three hours left before the whole town shuts down, and one hour left before the important things do, things like banks, and post offices. We need to learn the secret of the early morning cool and the siesta. Instead, we have to jump into the water four times a day, two times before breakfast. As soon as think I’m done with swimming for the day, I peel my bathing suit off and tug my clothes back on, only to discover they’re already coated with sweat.

The heat is mainly because there hasn’t been much wind lately. Which makes us feel more guilty about being here--we should be using these calms to make progress upwind. I can’t believe we’re missing this weather window. It makes me want to claw my fingernails against the Lexan hatch. I’m trying to be patient, though. I always want to go, go, go, and Karl’s not only dealing with a foreign culture for the first time, he’s also getting sick of being forever on the move. We both are. It’s wearing us down more than we’re letting on. We’re both ready to find someplace where we can let ourselves be at home for a while, but I don’t want that place to be Georgetown. I’m already sick of it here. The Dominican Republic--that’s my goal. I even scoped out potential dive shops for the summer in Manzanillo.

The mosquitoes are brutal, too. After Karl gets back to sleep at around dawn, the mosquitoes begin to attack me, buzzing around my ears. I only have enough insect repellent to dab it around my face. “You can have my feet,” I tell them. “Just leave the ears alone.”

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