Yep, when one is ready, one is ready. We’re ready to go and things just seem to drag on. We went back to Panama City to get our extended Visa for French Polynesia and the month was up on the 14th. We call the Embassy on  the 12th  and no they haven’t heard yet. Kim on North Star applied the day after we did. They called on the 12th and that evening they received an email saying come and get them. Oops, however it takes two days.  We ask Kim to ask them for us too!  A little subtle pressure is always good.  The following day we call, “No, haven’t heard”.  The following day we call, “Not yet”. It is now past the month that we should have received an answer from.  I’m starting to understand people’s frustrations with bueracracies. We figure Monday when W/ calls she’ll ask if there is a problem. If it comes down to it we figure that will just be money left on the table and walk away from it. We can’t wait forever, we are ready.

Then we go to Marina Warehouse to see about our motor for the generator.  We get lucky and catch Arturo in. He tells us there’s some difficulty at Customs with everyone’s order. He hopes tomorrow. We check tomorrow and he hopes Friday.  We wait. I’m getting a lot of practice waiting and I’ve never been good at it.

Years ago when I was under the influence of family my mom would drag me to Church. When you are only 7 or so drag is the best description. What 7 year old can sit still for an hour listening to stuff he can’t even see and play with. So my mom in her infinite wisdom figured I needed “sitting” lessons, or better “sitting” practice.  I don’t’ remember how long those lasted but I do remember the frustration of sitting on a chair in the dining room. I think I somehow only had 2 or three practice session and I would have thought of those as pure torture. I’ve not gotten much better at patience.

Kubota Stored under our Aft V Berth
Kubota Stored under our Aft V Berth

Finally, Friday we actually had the new motor on the boat. We used another cruiser to assist in lowering it to the dinghy (it only had a mass of about 45 kg’s) and we used a halyard to lift it on the boat. Put it in the cockpit to work on moving it below for stowage. Yeah, stowage. Our other motor is now doing fine so we’ll most likely be the only boat crossing the Pacific with a spare generator motor!

Monday arrives and we head to the French Embassy for the extended Visa. We sit in the waiting room for about an hour, the agent appears takes our Passports and tells us to return tomorrow between 10 and 12. We do, where she then advises us to stroll the old city because it will be another 45 minutes. We return for

Inside the French Embassy
Inside the French Embassy

another 30 minute wait and then we receive our Passports back with the extended Visas in them. Sweet. Back to the boat and get ready to leave. Only need to add some fuel and do a last minute shopping trip.

The following am W says the sink drain looks funny. I investigate and find the pot metal nut on the bottom of the drain rotted away and now it has separated. I look for our spares ( I have spares for most everything) but can’t find any spare nut nor tail piece. DAMN! While W/ hits the markets I hit the hardware store and buy the needed pieces. Or I had thought I did.

Returning to the boat I begin the task of fixing the drain and adding a shelf for where we will carry the spare motor.

The drain went well for about 10 minutes, then installing the new plastic nut the tail piece fell out. She looked right. But obviously not. I pull it back off and find that the flange on the tail piece is just a hair small for the nut. DAMN!  Tomorrow I get to go to the hardware store again.  Then I purchase a new tail piece and check to make sure it matches the nut. I was smart 🙂 I brought a new nut with me to make sure.

Back at the boat I install the new items and the sink is back in service. I finish the shelf for the engine and W/ and I lower into place.  We talk to Jackie on Jean-Marie and borrow their diesel jugs so we don’t need to move the boat to pick up fuel and then we’ll be all set.

I had hoped we would in and out of PC in 3 days. It was optimistic and most would never describe me as such. I did guess that I could be off by a day or two but the total time in PC was 10 days!  Finally, we’re ready to leave Panama.

We head to the Perlas to wait for weather and complete a few more tasks. I know just hanging in La PLayata our bottom has suffered a bit and with the new rules in the Galapagos I need to dive and make sure our bottom is spic and span. Here we go!

Go Slow
Sail Far
Stay Long