For me, Mauritius has been primarily about getting the boat to a safe place so I can come home, arranging to come home, and getting things ready to head to sea again at the end of August. We are currently parked at a “marina” at the glitzy downtown waterfront. The marina is not expensive, but then again it isn’t much of a marina. It is a small boat basin with concrete walls. Initially we were told there was no room for us here (despite Jimmy assuring us that they were “expecting” the BPO boats). But it is so close to the Customs dock that we walked over and identified a space on the wall, and got the okay to tie there. Occasionally a swell gets in here, primarily from passing ships, which makes it scary to be tied to a concrete wall. After the first night we rafted to another boat, which is far better. But I still didn’t like the idea of leaving the boat unattended here while I return home.
So we took the bus to a private development 15 miles south, that has a marina where sometimes the homeowners sublet their slips on a well protected floating dock. Very secure. Not much in the way of amenities; no showers. And far more expensive than where we are now. But I will feel much better about leaving the boat there. We have arranged to do so, and we will move there in two days. We have hired the “guardian” that Mauritius law requires if the skipper leaves the country. I have jumped through the hoops posed by Immigrations to get the letter that allows me to fly out (took three trips to their office, and once again our boat stamp turned out to be essential). Oh, and I changed my flights so I can come home in time for the family July 4th gathering.
We have arranged to have our damaged daggerboard fixed while I am away. We talked with a sailmaker about fixing our broken spinnaker sock. That didn’t work out, so we are going to use the sock from the old parasailor. We gave the torn spinnaker to the sailmaker, because they said they use the material to make bags and other items. Happy to be rid of it and know that the material will be reused. We talked with a battery company, and decided not to try to replace our batteries here. We took our nonworking computer to a shop; they say the motherboard is shot; they copied all our files off the hard drive. I’ll have to replace the board or the whole machine while home.
We changed the oil in both engines — a job that shouldn’t be difficult, but it is; and messy. We cleaned the stuck valve for the starboard head, and plan to service the port head tomorrow. We repaired a broken support for our cockpit floorboards. After we move the boat (and Tim leaves the next day), I will be doing a lot of cleaning. And attempting to eradicate our infestation of tiny ants. I’m hoping if I can remove or seal up all foodstuffs, and clean as thoroughly as possible, and then maybe spray nasty chemicals around just before I leave, that possibly they will be gone when I return…
So…we haven’t seen much of the island of Mauritius. We are in a city, but the well-guarded high end waterfront section, not the REAL city, which is teaming with people and vehicles. Our “tours” so far have consisted of our bus adventure, and walking through the city to get to Immigrations. I don’t much care about sightseeing here, but I know there are some nice places, and I feel like I’m not doing the country justice. I guess that’s why we visited the delightful part of Mauritius that is called Rodrigues! I also feel a little bad that my new crew coming in August won’t have time to see much of this island. But we will have some fun in the French island La Reunion, which is only an overnight sail away, and Luc will be there with a slate of activities!