Wed-Fri, Aug 6-8th - MORE Boat Chores

So-o-o, this Wednesday morning I started taking care of the new ATM card issue.

Another issue that was bothering me was getting a new replacement ATM card. I had lost mine nearly 3 months earlier in Liberia, Costa Rica, and had gotten a replacement, after much time and effort, sent to me at Los Suenos Resort. However, the one I received at Los Suenos/Bahia Herradura never did work; apparently I had the wrong PIN number. Finally, here in Panama City, where I have an internet connection and can use Skype for inexpensive phone calls, I got on the phone with my bank back in the U.S. and tried to have them send me a new PIN number for my ATM card. They would not do that. They said they could only cancel that card and send me a new one, no matter how hard I told them the difficulty that presented to me. In the end, in the absence of any better strategy, I just went ahead and told them to cancel my old card and send me a new one. Of course, they will only send it to my P.O. box in San Diego, and even that would take a week. THEN it would have to be FedExed to Panama City! So we'd have to wait out some more time in P.C....

I spent the rest of the day Wednesday changing the oil and filters in the main engine and the generator, another messy, but necessary job. To wrap up Wednesday, just before suppertime, I had the most unpleasant task of fixing a leaking black water holding tank by disassembling it, cleaning it, and re-gluing all of the pipes into it. Yech!

I was glad to take a shower and crash that night.

On Thursday morning, we took RHAPSODY into the marina to fill her with diesel fuel. It was another 1/2 day task as we had to put away the rain tarps, weigh anchor, drive into the marina, tie up, get fuel, pay for it, go back out to the anchorage, drop anchor (took us three tries this time), and replace the rain tarps before we could call the job done.

On Friday I went into the chandlery at the marina and bought a spare macerator for the heads. I was having problems with ours and, if we are going out to the islands, that's one thing I didn't want to have fail. So by Friday afternoon we were mostly ready to go back out to the Perlas Islands.

However, that afternoon I got an email from my buddy Pat Kingsland in San Diego. He had gone to the mailbox and the ATM card had arrived! we discussed for a couple of hours what to do: Should we stay in Panama City until we could get the ATM card FedExed down here, or should we go to the Perlas Islands and try to arrange to have the card waiting for us here upon our return? The question was complicated by the fact that the weather for the next few days did not look stellar for a passage out to the islands.

In the end we decided to stay yet another week in Panama City and have the ATM card sent right away. We had messed around with it for too many months to leave it up to chance anymore. So, right away on Friday afternoon, I took the dinghy into the Marina to get their address for the FedEx package. When I got to the office, I was told that the Marina would not receive packages for boats that were not staying in the Marina. We were staying in the anchorage, which is free, and had decided not to pay the $100/night for a slip in the marina, so there was nothing to argue about. The marina office person told me the whereabouts of a Mail Boxes Etc close by, so I walked over there.

When I got to the Mail Boxes Etc, there was a sign on the window saying that they were "open", but out of the office, along with some contact numbers and an email address. I wrote down their address and all of the contact information and went back to the boat and tried to call them to confirm the address. The last thing we wanted to do was have the ATM card sent to an incorrect address, so I needed to get this critical piece of information down. When I called the MBE, there was no answer, so I ended up sending an them an email. Hopefully I would get a response soon so that we could have the ATM card sent to us.

That afternoon I also received an email from our friends Max and Vittoria, that we had met when anchored at Isla Ventana and Boca Chica, Panama. They said that they were going to be in Panama City over the weekend and would like to get together with us, and that we should call them to set something up.