Return to summer camp in Barra de Navidad

It was a bit like being a kid getting to summer camp, excited to catch up with your friends. Arriving in Barra my crew probably had a good laugh at me excitedly pointing out cruising friends as we came into the lagoon. Truth be told, I felt guilty because it would be a few days until I could make the rounds to say hi.

After passing the Barra breakwater and heading towards the lagoon we got a look at the inside Barra waterfront.

What are the chances that my parents would be visiting Barra the same time as we sailed in? We had an interesting “German” dinner at Simon’s our first night in town. We found out later the recipes were Marlena’s (owner of Marlena’s restaurant) and they kept using them after she left to open her own place. Skip the German. Towards the end of the meal who came strolling by but Jody and Randy (Free Luff). It was great to introduce them to my friends and parents and hear a little about what they had been up to since last summer.

What are the chances that my parents would be visiting Barra the same time as we sailed in? We had an interesting “German” dinner at Simon’s our first night in town

Lori, Harrison, and Stumbles (her AT name) and I had a fun few days exploring together before they had to head back home. It is always hard to say goodbye for now, but even more so when you have a crew that has so much fun together. Ah the bane of cruising life.

Once my crew headed out it gave me a chance to catch up with friends and apologize for the delay. And what better way than to host movie night on Strikhedonia! I had Brian/Liz (Half Moon),
Jason/Vicki (Volare) and Jay/Carolee (Shameless) over for the classic Step Brothers.

My mom’s friend Marilyn is the social coordinator and let me tell you it was a booked schedule!

The dinners, the dancing, the happy hours, the live music, and the sunsets drifted by faster than any of us would like. Quickly it was hard to remember what day of the week it was.

One day I took my parents and some of their friends out for a day sail. There was just enough wind to sail and it was perfect weather. At one point we dropped the sails so everyone could take swim. Out went a few floating rings attached by lines to the boat. I explained it would be a good idea to hold on to them since we were still moving at about 1 knot making it hard to swim back to the boat. Barb found out just how tough it was, not to worry I started up and engine and she was able to grab a ring and enjoy the rest of her water time.

Another afternoon I headed over to “Secret” beach with Jason/Vicki (Volare) and Jay/Carolee (Shameless). It was my first time and it was the type of beautiful secluded beach that just begs you to skinny dip. The waves were really crashing in causing rip tides that at times could be a bit disconcerting, especially given the sharp rocks around the bay. Soon it was time for a few cervezas while checking out the sea cave. Jason impressed us all with is Pirates of the Caribbean impersonation, when a big wave flooded in he made a run for it, but in the process bashed is head on the roof. No bueno. For a head wound it didn’t bleed too much but it did necessitate heading back to the boats for first aid.

Just a small sampling of the food that filled my belly in Barra – it is pretty much impossible, at least for me, to cook aboard while in Barra…

Marilyn planned a morning hike to Melaque for breakfast. I diligently checked the weather and saw that around 4:00pm the wind was supposed to pick up. No worries, I’d be back long before then.

Exploring the beach built up a mighty hunger and the food was welcomed in my belly, but as breakfast was winding down the wind was winding up. Ugh. Off I run to catch the bus back to Barra, five minute walk to the water taxi, 15 minute wait for the panga – all told about an hour travel while the wind was building. Back on the boat it was already up to 18 knots and an hour later gusts were reaching 29 knots. No drama in the anchorage but I was glad to be aboard keeping an eye on things.

There are always a few random moments to capture…


  • Deena April 18, 2018 at 8:20 pm

    As always an enjoyable read! And now I need to go back to Barra for the food I missed! Thanks Chris!!!

    • Chris French April 19, 2018 at 8:42 am

      Ah thanks. Next season we can explore the options together!


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