Finding Good Old Friends Again / Среща със стари приятели

 

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Sailing for over a year and a half now. We have met many cruisers, made many new friends. And every now and then we bump into people we have met on some of the islands months ago, and every time it is a thrill!

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Плаваме вече повече от година и половина. Срещнахме много хора, сприятелихме се с много крузъри. И често се засичаме с приятели, с които сме се запознали преди някой-друг месец на някой от островите и всеки път се радваме от сърце да се видим отново.

 

Harley and April

Harley and April

But a couple of days ago we bumped into some really special people- the first cruising friends we ever made after we left Key West for Cuba in July of 2013.

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Но преди два дена се засякохме с едни много специални за нас хора- първите ни приятели-крузъри, с които се запознахме след като тръгнахме от Кий Уест към Куба през юли 2013.

 

Harley and April aboard El Karma

Harley and April aboard El Karma

It was one year and a half ago when we showed up in Havana with a total of 2 days of sailing experience. There we met Harley from New Zealand and April from California aboard S/V El Karma.

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Преди година и половина се появихме в Хавана с общо 2 дена мореплавателски опит. Там срещнахме Харли и Ейприл на борда на платноходката El Karma.

 

April and Harley, Cuba

April and Harley, Cuba

They shared with us some insane moments, like a rental car which wouldn’t stop braking down in the rain in the Cuban countryside; or the best tacos made by April which saved us from horrible starvation; snorkeling in the reefs at Cayo Levisa and a fire-dancing lesson on the beach in front of the disco club booming Michael Jackson songs; dancing aboard Fata Morgana. They also helped us a lot with information and advice, with the new watermaker which would not run properly, with fishing lures, which brought us the biggest tuna we ever caught.

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Те споделиха с нас няколко незабравими мигове: кола под наем, която се повреждаше непрекъснато под дъжда в кубинските села; вкусни такоси приготвени от Ейприл, които ни спасиха от гладна смърт; гмуркане в рифовете край остров Cayo Levisa и урок по танц с огън пред дискотеката на курорта, от която бумтеше майкъл Джексън; таци на борда на Фата Моргана. Те също така ни помогнаха страшно много с информация и съвети (много малко знаехме за мореплаването тогава, а те имаха над 12 години опит), Харли ни ремонтира машината за десалиниране на вода, която нещо не работеше както трябва, дадоха ни рибарски такъми, с които хванахме най-голямата риба- една 17-килограмова риба тон.

 

Harley

Harley

Harley

Harley

We kept in touch via Facebook, after they continued from Cuba to the Cayman Islands, Panama and across the Pacific to French Polynesia, and we continued to Mexico, Guatemala, and the Caribbean. So, when we found out they were back in the BVI, not aboard El Karma, but a 62-foot sloop Elythia we diverted from our rout and came to see them. They work as crew on S/V Elythia for some time, kite-surfing every spare moment.

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Поддържахме връзка с тях по фейсбук, след като т продължиха към Кайманите, Панама и Френска Полинезия, а ние към Гватемала и после Карибите. Така че, щом разбрахме, че са се върнали в Британските Вирджинки Острови, не с тяхната лодка, а като екипаж на 62-футовата яхта Елития, решихме да се отклоним за малко от пътя ни и да ги посетим.

 

April

April

April

April

We sailed from St Martin to the BVI and the very first evening we had a nice little get-together with our cool sailing buddies April from California and Harley from New Zealand, on the beach with beers and treats. There, we also met Harley and April’s friends Helen from New York and Andre from Grenada, also crewing on a big shiny catamaran named Lotus.

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След Ст Мартен доплавахме до Британските Вирджински Острови и още първата вечер си организирахме малко събиране на плажа с Ейприл от Калифорния и Харли от Нова Зеландия, с бири и мезета. Там срещнахме и техните приятелите – Хелън от Ню Йорк и Андрей от Гренада, които също работят като екипаж на един голям луксозен катамаран наречен Лотус.

 

Ivo, April and Harley

Ivo, April and Harley

Get-together with old and new friends on the beach, BVI

Get-together with old and new friends on the beach, BVI

The next morning we were invited for breakfast aboard S/V Lotus, which turned into a feast of epic proportions… I think, we have never had such an extravagant buffet-breakfast aboard a boat, which included: Johnny Cakes, Caribbean salad with salt fish, bacon, poached eggs, French toast with fresh pineapple and jelly, turnovers, sausages… We finished eating sometime in the afternoon…and crawled back to the boats for short recuperation period, before dinner aboard S/V Elythina…

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На следващата сутрин (вчера) бяхме поканени на закуска на борда на Лотус, закуска, която придоби епически пропорции. Мисля, че за първи път имаме щастието да присъстваме на подобна екстравагантна закуска-бюфет на борда на яхта, която включваше: бухти, картофена салата с лук и солена риба, бекон, варени яйца, панирани филийки с пресен ананас и сладко от череши, банички, наденички… Приключихме да ядем по някое време след обед…добрахме се до лодките за рекупериране на силите и после отидохме на вечеря на борда на Елития…

 

Catamaran Lotus

Catamaran Lotus

Helen preparing breakfast aboard Lotus

Helen preparing breakfast aboard Lotus

 

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April, who is a professional cook, and we adore her cooking, made 3 meats, 4 salads, and 5 sides (she likes to “keep it simple”, right…)

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Ейприл, която е готвач по професия и ние страшно харесваме гозбите и, ни сготви 3 вида меса, 4 вида салати и 5 вида гарнитури.

 

Breakfast aboard S/V Lotus

Breakfast aboard S/V Lotus

Tomorrow is our turn to barbeque things board S/V Fata Morgana. Expect more delicious up-dates.

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Утре ние сме наред да печем разни неща на борда на Фата Моргана. Очаквайте вкусни подробности.

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Surfing Cabarete

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“My surfboard is a magic carpet”

– Jade Adele

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It is magic, catching a wave and staying on top of it. Like catching flying dragons and riding them. You have to wait. They come all the time, running towards the beach, mad dragons who don’t even notice you. You will hate them and love them, you will talk to them, try to convince them to listen to you, you will drink them and breathe them, and only briefly you will become a part of them. Once this happens, there is no going back.

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Cabarete is a small coastal town less than 100 km east of Luperon, with some of the nicest windiest beaches in the Dominican Republic.

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Thousands of visitors from all over the world come here each year, but these are not regular tourists. The people who come to Cabarete come to surf. The town is the surfing mecca of the Caribbean and life here revolves around surfing, windsurfing, kitesurfing, and paddle boarding. Surf competitions take place in Cabarete every year. There are surf-shops, surf-hotels, and surf-cafes. The surf vibe is incredible.

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Not surprisingly, there is a large expat community of surf-maniacs who have moved to Cabarete from all corners of the world to make it their permanent home and thus be able to do what they love best all day, every day: surf. Like Jade and Gabriel.

Jade

Jade

We met them thanks to Kendall, a friend from Montreal. “Check out these guys”, Kendall wrote to me a few months ago and sent me a link to their blog.

Jade and Gabriel are „travel bloggers on an adventure to the most beautiful places on earth.“ In their blog you can read stories of travel and adventure, as reviews of places and food, see and purchase beautiful photography (Gabriel is a photographer), and of course find out all there is about surfing in Cabarete. We started following their journey through their travel diaries at WeTravelAndBlog.com

As soon as we arrived in Dominican Republic they invite us to Cabarete for a couple of days even though they are busy organizing a wedding. Their own wedding. We are thrilled.

Gabriel and Evo

Gabriel and Evo

Surfing is a lot of work: paddling all the way inside, trying to catch a wave and then keeping balance. After about one hour we are totally destroyed. Shoulders hurt from the paddling, ribs hurt from the board, eyes are red from the sun, salt water in the nose, sea urchins in the feet.  But it’s all worth it the few seconds when we manage to stay up on that surf, sliding in front of the wave. We just want to go back in and do it again, longer and better this time.

Maya surfing for the first time.

Maya surfing for the first time.

In the afternoon we visit Kite Beach. We have never seen anything like it. Hundreds of kites and windsurfs riding the constant Trade Winds. It’s spectacular.

Kitesurf Beach, Cabarete

Kitesurf Beach, Cabarete

Then, we eat pollo al carbon, BBQ chicken, at a small local restaurant and go to sleep early, at Jade and Gabriel’s place. It is the coolest place we have ever seen. A big old wooden house with a porch and a huge yard, old trees, palms, and ferns everywhere, an outside shower in the back, and a Dharma Garden with herbs and vegetables populated by strange insects and little lizards.

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Gabriel’s dad built the house years ago. Now a bunch of people live there. Gabriel’s aunt Maru , the coolest aunt in the world, has a room downstairs. She loves tango, artichokes and pear nectar, has 6 dogs, the favorite one is nicknamed Prosti, “Ex prostituta”, Maru explains. There is also a room rented to a friend who is the creator of the Dharma Garden. Jade and Gabby live upstairs.

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The next day the waves are better, surfing is easier, and Maya gets pretty good at it. Alesandro, one of  Jade and Gabriel’s friends and surfing instructor spends over an hour in the water with Maya helping her and teaching her to surf.

Maya and Alesandro

Maya and Alesandro

When Maya finally comes out of the water she announces: “I need a surfboard…”

Maya

Maya

Evo is also badly hooked to surfing and is getting the hang of it pretty quick. I am totally destroyed from the previous day, but would love to surf some more again. Viktor missed the whole thing as he decided to take a couple of days off (us) and stay on the boat by himself.

Evo surfing

Evo surfing

We return to Cabarete after two weeks to celebrate Jade and Gabriel’s wedding. The party is at Seahorse Ranch, a luxurious gated community and beach resort, many acres of prime land, with a restaurant perched on the rocks over the sea. It’s beautiful.  We are absolutely honored and thrilled to be at the wedding party. There is live music, cotton candy, a bonfire near the sea under a full moon… Many of the surfers we met on the beach are there. Alesandro is there, Maru, even Kendall!

At the wedding party

At the wedding party

 

Surfing Cabarete Pictures

Gabriel teaching Maya how to stand up on the board

Gabriel teaching Maya how to stand up on the board

A guy surfing upside-down

A guy surfing upside-down!

 

Kitesurf Beach, Cabarete

Kitesurf Beach, Cabarete

Watching the daily show from the beach

Watching the daily show from the beach

 

Kitesurfer flying

Kitesurfer flying

Same guy doing tricks in the air

Same guy doing tricks in the air

 

Maya and Alesandro

Maya and Alesandro

Maya

Maya

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Evo

Evo

 

Maya

Maya

Jade

Jade

Evo

Evo

 

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