I went to an Internet café. Many people had written me e-mails
and it took a long time getting through them all. Anne writes that she would
like to know what was going through my head out there, all those days at sea.
(Why is it that so many people think that crossing an ocean is somewhat of a
religious experience(/spiritual awakening)? It's just a lot of water. A whole
damn lot of water to cross. Something anyone with a decent boat would be able to
pull off). And she asked and wished; for maybe the last time that she wanted me
to come home for her sake and "fight" for her and the kids. I find such e-mails
extremely difficult to respond to. I don't want to offend her or make her feel
second best, even though that was what I was doing in the first place. But I'm
not changing this life(style, edit) voluntarily. It is something you need to try
to know what it actually is(/feels like). At this moment in time, it is
extremely difficult/impossible for me to picture myself in Denmark: Living and
working there, spending so much time and money paying taxes, only negative news
on the radio. And then there is the shitty weather too. No. I guess I just
haven't had enough of this yet.
Obviously there are advantages to living in DK. It's just that right now, I'm
only able to see the disadvantages. But how do you tell somebody that in a
"nice" way, without giving them the cold shoulder and burn all bridges behind
you. After all she's the one with all the "hassle" (read = the kids). Maybe my
dilemma is that I'm trying to eat my cake and have it too, and that I know this.
I am an egoist, so I'm told by Anne.
You regret some of the things you have done, but eventually it passes.
thought of the things you didn't do that's going to haunt you for the rest of
your life... J.H.
Down here people are of Dutch origin and speak Papiamento, a mixture of
Portuguese, Dutch and a bit of English. The newspaper is also written in
Papiamento, which looks quite funny.
Everywhere you receive an incredible welcome. Everybody greets you and smiles,
as if you were old friends. Even at the Customs House and immigration offices.
Often you are asked if you need any help and receive spontaneous advice about
where to do your shopping, what to see, etc.
Everything is incredibly clean and freshly painted. They love colours, which
means all colours of the rainbow have been used painting their houses. It's
actually like a small piece of Europe, only with a tropical climate. There is a
total prohibition on anchoring. You have to use a mooring swivel.
I'm told that they are charging more here to be berthed, than they did in the
port of Las Palmas. The price level is high.
Down here diving is a great experience. There is an astounding life. Turtles,
whales, dolphins and fish in all kinds of shapes, sizes and colours. Since I was
wet already, I cleaned the hull, so now we're able to go at top speed once
again. I borrowed a tap and die from an American boat, so now the thread on the
wind steering is in top form.
Tomorrow I'm going sailing with a local fisherman. He has got the last original
fishing sailboat (without engine); Ettienne. He's been the owner of the boat
since it was new. Now it is 45 years old, and he 72.
Kristi, the contact person of DOCA (Danish Ocean Cruising Association) has a
sail loft here at this marina, but not for long. She is closing it on February
1, 2001, but will continue to make sail repairs, only from off her boat. And
then she's done with the big jobs. The rent is simply too expensive and takes up
2/3 of the income. I hope she will continue as their contact person.
Ulla and Daniel, a young Swedish couple, are also here(/present). Ulla is
working at the marina reception, while Daniel earns a living as a diving