La Ceiba: Lagoon Marina - Heading Home

Thursday, June 30, 2005
Honduras

015-47.100 N
086-45.540 W
Marine forecast for this location

Ahoy from the crew of the BlueJacket!

I'm sure that lots of you are getting ready to get away for the 4th of July weekend, and we're doing the same thing...except that we're headed back home. Yup, tomorrow morning we'll be winging our way back to Boston. It'll be good to get back home and see friends and family...and oh yeah, all of those home projects that no one completed while we were away! :-(

We pulled into La Ceiba last Friday after motoring from Roatan. When we left Roatan we had 7-10 kts of wind from behind, which meant that our apparent wind was next to nothing. A tropical wave had gone through the day before and another one was forecast for Saturday, so Friday looked like a good day to move. As soon as we pulled out of the anchorage it became clear that the forecast had missed something. The radar showed rain squalls all over and you could see the squall lines moving through. We were doused with rain on a regular basis and since we were moving with the rain, when we got into a patch of rain, we were in it for a while. Luckily the squalls didn't pack much punch as we never got more that 15-20 kts of wind out of them. Anyhow, it was a wet 30 mile ride over here.

We pulled into the Lagoon Marina for the second time in three years. It's a beautiful marina which is about 1/2 of a mile down a river. There are towering mountains just miles away, and it's a feast for the eyes. Toni and Rita, who own the marina, have built a beautiful complex. They have several grounds keepers who maintain the lush gardens. On top of there's a wonderful pool and incredibly clean, tile lined bathrooms. I've never seen anything like it at any other marina. The biggest drawback is that it's in the middle of nowhere and you have to take taxis into town. However, La Ceiba does boast a real mall, Pizza Hut and lots of other US franchise restaurants. What more could a cruiser ask for!

I'm really glad that we decided to leave on Friday instead of Sunday, as we've been working our butts off to get the boat ready to leave. It's amazing how many things need to be done. We have a list of close to 60 jobs that have to be done before we leave, and I don't know if all of them will get completed. All of the important ones will get done.

I've been having problems with the new ProSine inverter/charger that I installed in Belize. I've been in regular e-mail contact with tech support and they shipped me a new unit. I replaced the control panel and that cleared up most of the problems. However, it kept dropping off-line when the air conditioning would try to come on and at seemingly random times. The new control panel didn't solve that, so I reluctantly decided to swap out the main unit. I saw reluctantly because this requires removing the hot water heater in order to get to the inverter. Once you get the hot water heater out, then you get to lay on you back in a hot, small cubby hole while hoisting heavy electrical components above your head. Not a fun job.

To do this job it requires lots of tools from different storage locations. Plus you have the boxes that the inverter comes in and all of the other stuff that we have packed to go home. Sue was getting, shall we say, *upset* with all of the stuff that was strewn about the boat. She had planned on wiping the woodwork down (the entire interior is cherry) and it seems that all of this stuff was in the way. I think that the real problem was that I was *laying on my back* (and obviously relaxing and having a great time) in the aft cabin. I mean, just because I was soaked with sweat and getting nicked and bruised, I was still *laying on my back*, and how hard could that be! :-)

Well, four hours later I was finally done, and when I tested the new system, it did exactly the same thing! That may have invoked a few expletives and yet another e-mail to tech support. Now, this was not the first time that we had discussed this exact problem, but this time they suggested that I alter one of the many parameters available from the control panel. Lo and behold this simple change "fixed" the problem. (As an aside, I believe that this is still a software bug on their end.) I didn't need to swap out the main unit at all. Insert expletive here.

I won't even go into my battles with the watermaker. The company finally admitted that the system which was supposed to produce 250 gallons/day only does 200 GPD. Unfortunately it's only doing 150 and now they want me to bring the motor, pump and 4' long membrane/pressure vessel back so that they can test them. Hey, what's left? The tubing? I've already brought the motor back twice and the membrane once! Ah, life as a cruiser is fun. :-)

Anyhow, we'll be back home on Friday with lots of stuff from the boat. We hope that all of you have a great 4th of July. Hope to see you soon!

-- Geoff & Sue
Log ID: 705

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