Je bekijkt de reis...
Reisverslag Setting sail for Paramaribo!!
5 januari 2012
Setting sail for Paramaribo!!
for you, a little story about big surprises:
A little over two weeks ago I went to the airport of Charleroi thinking that that night I would sleep at the airport of Gran Canaria (the plane would arrive around midnight), and that I would spend at least the next week or two looking for a sailing boat in the harbor of Las Palmas to sail with across the ocean.
By now it seems little less than customary on my travels, though, that unexpected meetings get me in situations that I couldn´t even have imagined if I wanted to. This time, I had to abandon my ideas of what the next two weeks would probably be like exceptionally quick: while I was standing in line to board the plane in Belgium.
That´s because this is when Sofie, a Flemish girl from Leuven, decided that she would sneak into the very long queue right where I was standing, because I was alone and she hoped other people would think we were traveling together.
"You don´t mind, do you?"
I thought for a second, and then decided that I really had no desire to get worked up about someone cutting in line.
"Not even a little bit.", I said.
We got into a conversation and after what can´t have been more than 15 minutes of talking and me telling her about my plans to sleep at the airport, she offered to ask the lady who´s house she would be taking care of for the next three weeks (and who would be picking her up from the airport) if I could sleep on the couch that night.
Upon arrival this turned out to be no problem at all, and instead of heading to Las Palmas, I had arrived at the opposite side of the island. This, together with Sofie suggesting that I should really see some more of the island than just Las Palmas, made me decide to go to Las Palmas taking a detour of several days through the mountains. Sofie had never hitchhiked though, so I offered that she could join and then take the bus back from Las Palmas.
We ended up spending a week of camping and hitchhiking around the island, and I got to see all the good spots that she had discovered during the time she had previously spent on the island. And since she lived in Las Palmas for six months, she knew the island pretty well. Lucky me!!
Then, finally, the boat search would have to start. That´s what I came to do after all! Knowing that it could take weeks before I would find a captain willing and able to take me along, I had fully prepared mentally to not be successful very quickly.
That evening I walked around in a bit of a daze, squeezing my arm to check if I wasn´t dreaming. I couldn´t quite believe it, but I had actually found a Dutch captain going to Surinam, willing and able to take me along, within six hours of arriving in the harbor!!
So, during the past week or so, I´ve lived on the ship (see picture), getting to know its ins and outs a bit, and Willem, the captain, turned out to be a really great guy, patiently explaining everything I didn´t know around the ship. By working to prepare the boat for the voyage, doing things ranging from installing solar panels and painting little patches on the hull of the boat, to installing a new computer, I´ve started to slowly feel at home aboard the ship.
There´s always something to do that needs doing before we leave, and we´ve postponed the departure day a couple of times already. The way it seems now though, we´ll leave this Saturday morning, sailing around 5500km across the ocean, probably in around 20 days, to get to Surinam. After a stop of about two weeks there, he will continue to sail through the Caribbean with his girlfriend, who is flying over to Surinam from Amsterdam, and I will most likely join them to Tobago before heading for Venezuela, Colombia, and Central America.
In short, I can tell you that the past weeks there have been numerous times where I´ve looked around me, shaking my head, thinking: "How in the world could I even have imagined all of this happening?!", and to be honest I still can´t quite believe it. Maybe seeing Paramaribo in a week or three will change that, but I doubt it!
From a sunny Las Palmas, I wish you all a very good 2012. The next update will be from the other side of the Atlantic, insha´Allah!!
Foto's bij verslag (8)
5 januari 2012 19:33 | Door: Ido
He, het is hier net zo warm als bij jou!
5 januari 2012 19:50 | Door: pap
die Friese vlag kan ik wel plaatsen maar wat is die andere rwb ster? Goeie vaart zoon
6 januari 2012 07:42 | Door: Celine
Geweldig, blijf je lekker verbazen! Zodra dat niet meer gebeurt is de lol er volgens mij ook voor een groot deel af. Een veilige vaart!
6 januari 2012 08:02 | Door: Phil Limonard
Een goede vaart en geniet van je reis over de Atlantische oceaan.
6 januari 2012 20:20 | Door: Ekko
Ins blauwe hinein heet dat geloof ik. Geniet ervan!
9 januari 2012 16:18 | Door: marianne roks
veel plezier, goede en behouden vaart op weg naar suriname. we genieten van je reisverhalen, je stunts en de mooie foto's. alle goeds voor jou dit jaar. veel groetjes van ons allemaal.
23 januari 2012 21:47 | Door: Tibi
Safe travels :) Can't wait to read your next one!
30 januari 2012 21:31 | Door: Laura
Awesome! Ik had het al gelezen via fb. Bij het lezen van je verhaal krijg ik kippenvel. Wat fantastisch dat je dé lift hebt gevonden. Ben heel benieuwd naar je komende post! Happy and safe trails, xx