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Melissa & Dave - Adventures at Sea

Fly dingy, fly!

We started Spanish School today.  That meant we had to get up early and launch the dingy and get our butts to shore by 8am.  Dave had tied the dingy to the front deck for the trip here.  Launching it means we take the spinnaker halyard (a rope that hangs down from the top of the mast), hook it to the front of the dingy and lift the dingy into the air and over the side where we can let it down.  We do this all the time so no sweat.  At 7am Wanuskewin calls on the radio and offers to take us all in their dingy because they are worried we can't launch ours given the high winds.  Mike is afraid our dingy will turn into a kite and fly away in the wind.  Dave says, no worries, we got this.  Uh huh.

After Dave rigs everything up, Melissa pushes the button on the power winch to start lifting the dingy (yes, ok, call her princess).  The dingy goes vertical and starts flying around the deck like, well, a kite.  The wind slams it up against the port side stay (wire rope that holds the mast in place).  Dave pulls against the wind trying to free the dingy and push it over the side.  Wind wins.  Dave loses.  Dave tries again and gets one pontoon over the side, and the dingy flips around on him the other way.   We learned later from Mike on Wanuskewin that this was all apparently pretty funny to watch.   Melissa starts to wonder if there is still time to call the town panga to come get us before class starts.  Dave is determined that no dingy is going to outsmart him.  Dave nearly gets tossed overboard.  Melissa hopes Dave can swim back to the boat against the strong winds as she had no way to retrieve him if he goes overboard.  Dave sits down on the deck and starts maneuvering the dingy with his feet.  This garners some success.  The dingy is now over the side.  Dave is yelling at Melissa to let the dingy down as fast as possible.  Now the dingy is sailing (still vertical) down the side of the boat.  By some miracle it lands right side up in the water and Dave quickly ties it to the side.

Ok, now the only challenge left is getting a motor on it.  Dave decides that now is probably not the time to hoist the large 20 HP 130 lb motor using the boom over the side in these winds.  Instead he lifts the 2.5 HP 40 lb motor by hand over the stern where he is relatively protected from the winds.  We hop in and head for shore.

For $120 each we get four hours a day x 5 days a week individual Spanish language instruction.  We shall see whether we learn anything, but for $6 per hour, you can’t beat the price.  And the school is located in a restaurant on the beach.  So we can pull the dingy’s directly up to the restaurant out of the surf, have breakfast, and start our lessons!  They give homework, and as you might imagine Melissa does hers faithfully that evening.  Dave is like "what homework? there was homework?"  But then he's way ahead of the rest of us, so maybe his instructor didn't assign him any.  Maybe.

After class let out, we dropped off the laundry, and Melissa decided to follow Holly’s lead and have a bunch of old t-shirts she never wears converted from short sleeve into tank tops.  Short sleeved t-shirts are just too dang warm.  (Another thing you never thought you would hear Melissa say!)  We had seen a woman sitting on her porch with her sewing machine the other day and figured she was probably the town seamstress.  Fortunately Holly was wearing one of her converted shirts so Melissa could point at Holly’s shirt and the four short sleeve t-shirts we brought in.  The seamstress immediately grasped what we were after.  She took a few measurements, and quoted us a price of $1.50 each to cut and re-stich them.  She probably thought that was a pile of money.  We didn't even negotiate. 


Here is what they looked like when complete.  Nice!


Then we were off to do a bit of shopping.  We happened across a bakery that advertised a wood fired oven.  In we went, and OMG.  The pictures tell the story…  who would have thought we would find such a gem in a surfing town in Nicaragua?

This giant garlic focaccia is $70 in local currency or $2.80 US.


Then it was time for lunch.  As you know, Dave loves his burgers.  And TripAdvisor said there was one place in town known for its burgers.  And indeed it lived up to its reputation.  Note the menu being in English.  This is common here.  You would think we were in some small town in Southern California!  Maybe a BEG meeting is in order?



Then we headed back to the boat for a prize winning sunset!


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