February 20th, 1998 - Luperon
"It was another trip from hell. The seas never let up. Wind was ok, but the 6-foot seas made for a miserable trip. We stayed in the cabin (with the red bandanna pinned over the cockpit light), taking shifts, Cap more than me, of course."
To continue the story: We both began the trip up on the fly-bridge, but once the rain began we had to stay below. The auto-pilot refused to work of course, so it really was tiresome to hang on to the wheel, sitting on that little seat with no back and held up by a stick (or as did our predecessor, with a bar stool, r.) It was the most uncomfortable position but at least it was next to the side door.
"We got pounded and Cap got pretty sore, while I was just thrown across the cabin like a missile, getting my ear smashed against the window frame. Nobody told me boating would be so painful!"
"What the hell was that?"
"We suddenly saw the most beautiful island to date - mountains, trees - looked like paradise!" At least on the Dominican side. Unfortunately, Haiti's vegetation has pretty much been stripped out of necessity.
"The motor threatened to quit several times, then it did about 10 miles from Luperon. Cap had to change the fuel filter, amidst much cursing and sweat."
"I think I'm having a heart attack."
Cap's head popped up from the engine compartment. "WHAT???"
"Cap had to keep bleeding the lines, but we finally made it into the harbor of Luperon at 10:30 a.m., 20 hours from our kick-off time. We were complimented on our boat by a trawler heading for George Town (obviously they weren't too close), and coming into the harbor was like old home week. We saw names we either knew or heard of: Water Witch, Aussie D'Light and Tim's Aisling, among others. Went to anchor but were told to pull up to the dock, which was another horror. Almost hit the boat behind us."
"Next thing we knew, 6 guys were aboard, Customs they claimed, and we thought they'd never leave. Kept trying to push diesel on us; went over and over our paperwork, asking where the boat name was. Finally they got 2 guys who spoke some English - Eddie and Edwin, and after putting them off about the diesel, they left and said immigration would come later, which they didn't. Off to anchor (again) and barely got it down when the engine quit, but we both just went to bed."
To read from Chapter 1: A Rough Start