It took us two days to get back to Cartagena and to Glacier Gem.
It was nice to return to her, we were worried the whole time while we were gone about whether or not we'd come back to a mold covered home or what else might have gone bad.
Thank goodness, and many thanks to Javier, who watched the Gem while we were gone for those four months, no mold was able to grow! Phew!
We spent the next several weeks getting ready for the next leg of our journey, our sail to Panama. The heat makes working on anything for more than a couple of hours a day, unbearable and nearly impossible we slowly accomplished little tasks every day.
We took the opportunity to explore more of Cartagena.
We thoroughly enjoyed Cartagena, its people, its food, and the city.
It's beautiful to see how different cities, in their own way, get ready for the holidays, in this case, for Christmas. With its elaborate decorations all over town, it literally brightened up the city and its night sky!
In the beginning we weren't sure where we were going to be over Christmas. It's all relative anyway. It was becoming more and more apparent that it's where you make it happen and with whom!! Hey, we have each other after all, what more can we ask for?
We did have a couple little things on board to decorate with and make it look and feel a bit more festive, and it was perfect for us!
We knew our Christmas this year was not going to be in Colombia but would be near or in Panama.
The sail from Colombia to Panama without stopping is only about a full three days away. The day before we left, we did some last minute food shopping and filled up on fresh water. We stored and tied down everything securely, ready for the waves and wind of open waters.
We took care of the exit/check out formalities the day prior as not to experience any possible hiccups, thus delaying our departure.
We wanted to take advantage of favorable sailing weather, and didn't really want any delays.
Saying good bye to friends we made, is necessary, but it's hardly a true good bye, it's always a ... "Until we meet again...."
And, so here we are, on our way, finally, to the Panama Canal.
We couldn't have asked for a more perfect day to depart. As we sail away and bid Cartagena farewell, a beautiful sunrise sees us off....