Perlas Islands

Cruising the Perlas Islands in the wet season meant that we were not going to have any problems finding a place to drop the hook in a crowded anchorage. It was more likely that we’d have the place to ourselves not worrying about how close our neighbors were. We’d met up with a French couple on H2O while anchored at Pedro Gonzales but that was it.
The only real island with significant civilization was Contadora. We needed to check emails and get a few groceries and when we got there the calmest anchorage was off the nudist beach. There weren’t many nudists but there were a couple of boats already anchored there. There was a French power cat that seemed to think that the nudist beach extended into the anchorage and an Australian boat with an extended family on board, that based on the wailing of the toddlers were having some quality family time. As we were sitting in the cockpit watching the world go by Robin saw a sailboat approaching and said “Hey, that looks like Tug Tub”. Yep, that’s right, Tug Tub, the name’s a long story. Mike said that the odds of running across some friends from Mexico that we haven’t seen in over a year down here were pretty long but Robin hailed them on the radio. There was no response and they anchored on the other side of the Island. Oh well.
The next morning we hopped in the dingy and decided that the best place to land the dingy was a beach around the corner so we headed that way and as we cruised up to the beach there was Tug Tub setting at anchor. After lots of smile and hugs we headed out for a week or so of dingy adventures, beach combing and rum tastings with Tug Tub.
Most days we flagged down a local fishing panga and bought whatever they had caught for dinner. Usually that meant lobster which we paid a few bucks apiece for but we also scored a couple of what the locals call Sierra, a very tasty mackerel and one day brought home an octopus. The lobsters and Sierra ended up on the grill and after a lot of cook book consultations we went through a long process of preparing the octopus to tenderize it. We ended up grilling it and it was tasty but something in our process went awry because it was as tender as shoe leather. Oh well, I guess we’ll just stick with lobster. It was great getting to buddy boat with old friends until they had to head for Panama City and then back to the USofA.

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