Hailing Channel 13

“Good morning, this is Isla Mujeres Cruisers Net. It is our purpose to stay connected, exchange information and build the community of cruisers. Your participation is encouraged.,” at exactly 08:00 the familiar voice greets all sailors currently anchored or docked at Isla Mujeres, Mexico. The voice belongs to Lisa, who is our net controller today. She…

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Passage Briefing: Havana – Isla Mujeres

Port of Departure: Marina Hemingway, Havana, CubaPort of Call: Isla Mujeres, MexicoDistance: 268 nm (308 mi, 496 km)Estimated Duration: 67 hrs (2 d 19 hrs)ETD: Thursday, Mar 12 13:00 UTC-4ETA: Sunday, Mar 15 07:00 UTC-5 Weather The moderate high (1024 HPa) sitting south of the Florida Panhandle is most influential for the current weather situation…

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Cuban Hunting Grounds

This photo was taken on March, 06, 2020 at the Palco Mall Supermarket in Jaimanitas, a small town in the outskirts of Havana, Cuba. What have the products on these three photos in common? These are products that require quite some efforts to get here in Cuba. I have been living here for more than…

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The Beauty and the Beast

This photo was taken on March 03, 2020 in the Gulf of Mexico, approximately ten nautical miles north of Santa Cruz del Norte, Cuba. We were on our way from Varadero, Cuba to Havana, Cuba, a short 90 nautical miles over-night passage. After a rocky night the winds and the seas had calmed down and…

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Passage Briefing Varadero – Havana

Weather The high that was sitting west of Florida over the last days and brought cold and strong northerly winds to the north of Cuba moved east. Accordingly the winds are currently shifting from northwest over north to east and further to southeast and decrease as the center of the high moves northeast. At first…

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Sunshine, Salsa and Socialism

“Hey Maik!” somebody is shouting my name and abruptly I turn around.  I see a pink Chevrolet ‘55 convertible taxi, and I see a woman, wearing an elegant long dress and a hat that makes every sombrero look tiny. Huge sunglasses cover what is left to see on her face. The sun is burning relentlessly.…

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A Song of the Sunrise

By an Unknown Author The night breaks. The light shakesDown from the sky. The darkness trembles: shivers, dissembles:Unwilling to die. And facile and fleet, on dusky feet,Out of the dripping sunlight tripping,Shadows pass by,All sprinkled and spatteredWith golden rain, All shivered, all shattered, like dream-ghosts scatteredBy the waking brain. The light dawns. The night mournsAnd…

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The Earthquake Can Wait

Santa Marta, Cuba – January 29, 2020 – I took this photo in Santa Marta, Cuba, just a few moments after the earth was shaken by a 7.3 force earthquake short of Cuban’s southern coast and a tsunami warning was issued for the area. Everyone is checking on friends and family. Only the couple in the top right corner…

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The Smell of Fresh Bread

I just arrived in Santa Marta, a lively small town in the north of Cuba, between the cities Matanzas and Cardenas. As I get out of the blue and white 1956 Chevrolet 210 Sedan that served us as a taxi, I am struck by the smell of fresh bread. (You need to know that bread…

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Five Star Ghost Marina

Most sailors dream of sailing the Caribbean at least once in their lives. They dream of warm weather, clear water, secluded anchorages, endless beaches… The reality hits them with unaffordable marinas, crowded anchorages and crazy labor rates. I am not saying there are no hidden gems left off the beaten path anymore but the beaten…

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Cuban Muscle Power

Santa Marta, Cuba – January 25, 2020 – There is a lot of things that Cuba has plenty: cigars, beautiful girls, vintage cars and Che Guevara pictures for example. But on the flip side there is also a lot of things that Cuba has very little of: milk, apples or razor blades for example –…

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Why It Is Worth It

North Atlantic Ocean, Straits of Florida – January 20, 2020 – Cold and wet and tired – there are moments when I am asking myself “What the hell am I doing this for?” And usually the answer is just a moment away.  All day the weather is lousy. You know there is a front coming…

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Running Down to Cuba

Every downside has its upside, and as my good friend, experienced Cape Horner and professional psychologist Katarzyna said, “The cure to everything is always more sea and less land.” Following this motto I am going to cure my grief over the loss of my dear crew members by embracing the new freedom and setting sails…

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Moody Atlantic

Varadero, Cuba – January 04, 2020 – Let me tell you the good news first: Yesterday we safely arrived in Varadero, Cuba Marina Gaviota, Varadero after a 168 hrs/503 nautical mile exciting passage: We left GreatInagua, Bahamas on Dec 28 around 13:00 with some delay because I needed to climb the mast to cut the…

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