To our great surprise, the term “water taxi”, or “lancha” in Spanish, is commonly used throughout the Caribbean Islands. We were quick to realize that these water taxis are actually the only means of transportation between the different islands. Upon our arrival in Bocas de Toro, we finally met captain Clive in a local restaurant : el Besa del Dragon, only to enjoy a few mores drinks, talking the afternoon through. As expected, our South-African born captain is quite an interesting man. He amazed us with his jaw-dropping stories about the nowadays ruthless pirates, and his 23 yearlong voyages across the world.
After a 10-hour, terribly jam-packed bus ride, we unloaded and headed to the Chinese hotel across the street. It had been a long way from El Valle de Anton to the West coast of Panama. After a recuperating night, a couple drinks in the morning, and feeding pizza to homeless children, we headed for Isla de Colon, where the famous beach town Bocas del Toro lays awaiting.
A 6000-year-old design, Chinese crafted junk, is what we boarded that day. A junk simply refers to a specific Chinese sailboat design. The Nuthin’ Wong was built in the early 90’s by our captain himself using recycled material that people generously gave him. The ship’s interior is decked out with flags,pictures, drawings, nets, binoculars, ribbons, and more, adding to its authenticity. We learned that the ship is registered in B.C., Canada, as Captain Clive immigrated from South-Africa to Canada to get away from the horrors of the Apartheid.
Before heading to Bocas del Toro, we were lucky enough to encounter Dominic, who gladly accepted to come aboard with us and join the A-Ways crew. Truly a great addition to the team; he is of a calm and patient nature, a hard worker, and has a truthful stare about him. Now that we had boarded and settled in, the afternoon was spent doing backflips off the bow, enjoying a nice cocktail and treating ourselves to a Cuban cigar while watching the sun leave place to a starlit sky.
All these incredible experiences were made possible by using Findacrew.net!
Until next time,
The AWs Crew