Yesterday was a “big day” for Sans Souci.
The freighter that was to pick us up in Costa Rica, for transport to Victoria Canada, arrived. My delivery skipper, Jeff, had spent two days preparing the boat to be loaded onto the freighter. As he was preparing to leave the dock, to load Sans Souci on the freighter, the word came that we could not be transported. We were told that the Captain of the freighter had made a last-minute decision that Sans Souci was too heavy for the ship’s cranes.
I am thousands of miles away from Costa Rica, and cannot say exactly what occurred, or who, if anyone, is at fault. What I do know is that Sans Souci has been waiting for two months to be transported, and that the freighter left Golfito without Sans Souci on board. There will come a day when it is appropriate to figure out what happened, but for now, my focus is on trying to get Sans Souci home to the Pacific NW. The good news is that Costa Rica is generally safe from hurricanes, and where we are in Golfito is extremely well protected. I am puzzled as to exactly how or when we’ll get Sans Souci home, but I am not worried about her current location.
Given this occurrence, there is no way that the boat can go to Alaska this summer. The previous shipping delays had already pushed our schedule to the limit. I do believe we will still get the boat to the Pacific NW, but this feels like it will be at least a one to three month delay. We will figure this out, but it is too soon to say how, where or when we’ll be cruising next.
Over the past couple of weeks, I’ve been doing trip planning for a possible trip next summer up through Alaska, across the Aleutian Islands, down Siberia and into Japan. There are still some open questions on how practical this trip is. The weather patterns are such that it is normally run from West to East. Actually “normally” is probably a misnomer, in that this is not a route that many boats have taken. We would be exploring new and interesting territory. The idea of visiting Russia is very compelling, and we’re starting to get really excited. It’s too early to say what we’ll be doing, other than I’m fairly certain we’ll be heading across the Pacific, but whether it is to French Polynesia, Hawaii, or across the top to Japan, I do not know. For now, I am having fun doing the research!
Roberta and I are very disappointed to be delaying our Alaska trip. Jeff had a good line when I spoke to him yesterday in Costa Rica. “Ken – it’s not that bad. Think of it this way: Nobody got hurt!” On a boat, you can never take a schedule too seriously. We were very lucky on our run south, and experienced no delays. Sooner or later the odds had to catch up with us, and as Jeff said, when something bad happens on a boat, and nobody gets hurt, it’s a good day. So… I’ll just keep staring at the charts, and plan some great places to go – whenever and wherever we get our boat back.
I’m sure I’ll get a few (actually many) emails saying “Why not just head through the canal, and do the Caribbean?” That has been discussed. Unfortunately, it is hurricane season. It’s the wrong time to be planning Caribbean cruising. Also, there are a few minor items (such as the air conditioning) that should be fixed. We’ve been putting off the repairs for months while we’ve been cruising, and with the slipped schedule on Alaska, I might as well use the time to do some cleanup.
To be continued….
Ken Williams Nordhavn 68,
Sans Souci http://www.kensblog.com
PS A friend sent me this joke. I never send out jokes, and this particular one has absolutely NOTHING to do with boats, however, it was impossible not to think of my Nordhavn while reading it:
“A Hercules C-130 was lumbering along when a cocky F-16 flashed past. The jet jockey decided to show off. He told the C-130, “Watch this!” and executed a barrel roll, a steep climb, and finished off with a sonic boom as he broke the sound barrier. “So, C-130? What do you think of that?” The C-130 pilot replied, “Very impressive, but try this.” The C-130 droned along for another couple of minutes until the C-130 pilot came back on the air and asked, “Well? What do you think of that?” The puzzled F-16 pilot asked, “Think of what? Nothing happened.” The C-130 pilot chuckled. “Oh, yeah it did. I just stood up, stretched my legs, went to the back, took a leak, poured myself a cup of coffee, and ate an apple fritter!”