It rained off and on during the night and then in the early morning it really started to pour. We are already in the rainy season but with the weather system in the Carib pushing everything back to Middle America, we now get it all. Everything that might have drifted away is stuck above the Middle American countries and it rains. It pours; it reduces visibility to half a mile at times. Normally when you enter Golfo Dulce, the hot air coming from the rain forest pushes the clouds away a little bit and you still have a clear view of the shore side but when the rain clouds get bounced back it does not work that way. Thus this time we did not see much shore line at all. Our travel guide tried to describe as best as he could what we should have seen but how do you describe a lush and tropical rain forest when the only thing you see is a grey dull curtain of rain? With no alternative out there as it rained everywhere, I still had to make the call. Also because we get here the clearance for our call tomorrow in Puerto Caldera as it is the same country. A very small boat comes out, carrying a local customs officer and his whole family (he clears the ship, they eat ice cream) and they remained on board while we went around the Gulf. 3 hours later they disembarked again and we sailed slowly towards Puerto Caldera.
Not much to relate, if not much is happening. We finished the yearly inspection for the new Passenger Ship Safety Certificate and the Lloyds inspectors only had a few remarks. A few outside speakers were not working; guess why, courtesy of the rains in the last few days. They found some of the light bulbs on the local indication panels out; also normal with several hundred’s of red and green lights all over the ship. One power fluctuation and several pop out. The electrician can and will never get to a 100% target and that was about it. Thus the inspectors were well pleased and signed all the paperwork, produced the certificates and the Statendam now has a new passport for the coming year. They will come back in San Diego to see if the lightbulbs and speakers have been repaired. They will have been; but no doubt by that time a few other bulbs will have popped.
That brings me also to the end of my blogging period. As mentioned I was supposed to go home on the 9th but my colleague was delayed. It has now been confirmed that he is in the air, so tomorrow he will make it to the ship. I will be going on leave until March 16th. That will mean no daily blogs but I will continue updating the captain’s bio’s and add a few ships histories. I would like to thank you all for reading my daily musings and I hope that you found them interesting and to some extent also diverting.
In the mean time, thank you and Happy Holidays, either at home, or on one of the DAM ships.
Best regards Capt. Albert .