Panama City 2/10

Stray Catz is anchored in Panama City. What a change in scenery and culture from all of the last year. We haven’t seen a skyline like this since we left Miami.

Smithsonian Biodiversity museum with the Panama City skyline in the background.

Smithsonian Biodiversity museum with the Panama City skyline in the background.

Panama City Skyline from the approach to the Canal.

Panama City Skyline from the approach to the Canal.

Skyscrapers and cranes and oh yeah, plenty of big ships going by. Real public transportation too. You know, buses with air conditioning and separate seats for everybody. Although they’re still standing in the aisle when the seats are full.
It looks like we’ll be here through mid March waiting on some parts. Among other things we’re adding a couple hundred feet of anchor chain. Something about these 16 foot tidal changes here in the Pacific compared to the two foot change in the Atlantic. Some spare parts and the usual maintenance stuff that keeps us floating. We’ll take a trip or two over to the Las Perlas islands which are only about 35 miles away, and possibly get in a jungle river trip too along the coast south of PC.

For those who we haven’t told personally yet, our plans have changed a little. Instead of crossing the Pacific this year, we’re turning north and heading up to Mexico. Stopping at all the countries along the way. Next year this time we will head west across the Pacific. It was a tough decision requiring a lot of thought. Unlike most of the rest of our decisions. With Kylan talking more and more about college, we felt it necessary to visit the USA and many colleges. The plan is to sail up the coast (not the easiest way to go) and into the Sea of Cortez in MX. Sometime around late June we will park Stray Catz in a Marina in northern S of C and travel to the USA. We’ll be back on Stray Catz around October and cruise the SofC till Feb/Mar then head off to the Galapagos and beyond.

Meanwhile, next week is Carnival here in PC. It may not be a Rio size party, but we’ve never even been to Mardi Gras, and I’m sure it beats the one in Providencia.  We went to a movie theater and saw Taken 3 and planning another trip to see Jupiter Ascending. (NO Spoilers) The english speaking movies are limited, but the theater is very nice. The mall the theater is in is HUGE! Yeah a mall, and I’m not even a big shopper, but I’m still in shock.

Here are some more canal crossing photos.

This is the observation deck for the Miraflores locks.

This is the observation deck for the Miraflores locks.

These locomotives act as the line handlers for the big ships.

These locomotives act as the line handlers for the big ships.

Kylan untying us from the mooring buoy. The strong wind pushed us away and we had to go back and pick him up.

Kylan untying us from the mooring buoy. The strong wind pushed us away and we had to go back and pick him up.

Under the Bridge of the Americas.

Under the Centennial Bridge.

 

 

 

The crew taking a break between jobs.

The crew taking a break between jobs.

 

 

 

 

 

Kylan and I on the bow in Miraflores locks.

Kylan and I on the bow in Miraflores locks.

Descending into the abyss.

Descending into the abyss.

approaching Centennial Bridge.

approaching Centennial Bridge.

Tug traffic headed the other way.

Tug traffic headed the other way.

Enjoying our first Pacific sunset in a long time.

Enjoying our first Pacific sunset in a long time.

Other boats waiting for the fill.

Other boats waiting for the fill.

Canal Authority line handlers. Way up there. It takes 8 to 16 minutes to fill the locks. For us about 10.

Canal Authority line handlers. Way up there. It takes 8 to 16 minutes to fill the locks. For us about 10.

Watchya got to say about that?