Days 7 thru 9 - Saturday thru Monday - Boat Chores

At this point, things finally slowed down a bit. We had been putting off a bunch of boat chores, most notably, the making of screens for the various hatches on RHAPSODY. In order to keep the bugs out, we'd been keeping most of the windows closed, but as it was getting warmer and more humid with each southward passage, the time had come to make some screens for the windows.

This took a little longer than I expected, and we spent Saturday and Sunday, pretty much all day, bending copper wire into shape, soldering the ends, cutting the screen material to fit, then tacking it to the frames with contact cement. After that setup, we would cut strips of rubber 2" wide, apply contact cement to one side, and fold it over the frame, shaping it as we went, until we had a screen that would fit snugly into the hatches.

We made four large 24x24" screens (including a sewed, velcroed opening version)and two smaller 12x24" screens over the course of the next two days. They work great and the boat is some 10-20 degrees cooler during the day now that we can open up all of the windows.

Even with all our chores, on Sunday afternoon, about 2:00 pm, we found the time to go into town (this time taking the dinghy) to search out a place where we had heard there would be live Mexican music and good eats. When we finally found "La Popa", which has a regular Sunday afternoon thing, we ordered a bucket of beers for something like $10, and then they kept plying us with plates of free appetizers: hot dogs, chicken wings, tacos, salads, etc. It's really a great deal in that we got 10 beers and all the food we could eat for $10. However, we were a little dissapointed when the live music turned out to be a solo electric piano player, accompanied by a rhythmn machine. We listened to him for a set, left a nice tip, and were back on RHAPSODY by sunset.

On Monday we did more various boat chores, including taking the dinghy into town and loading up on heavy provisions (48 cans of beer, 12 of pepsi, 15 litres of motor oil, antifreeze, and so on, weigh quite a bit when you're carrying them all over town on foot). That evening, at sunset, we took the dinghy over to EELYOS, where we had been invited to come aboard and visit. Patrick and Gerta's boat was quite cozy, and we all had a good time playing with baby Deneb. After Gerta served up a round of fresh baked brownies, and it had gotten dark, we returned, once again to RHAPSODY to close down the evening.