Sunday, 31 July 2016

Everything is broken

We’re alive! And we’re in the azores. But I feel some explanation is needed regarding our disappearance from the online world. 
The short answer is salt. It hates us.
Our laptop started dying about a year ago, which was sad. The salt air just gets into everything.  We managed to keep it hanging on by a thread though… if only it would last until the Azores, we’d be able to buy a new one with 240v! (Central America and the USA are all on 120v, which we can't plug into our boat). We went to order one online from Europe, but the duty in Honduras was insane. So we waited. The lid on the laptop seized open, then the keyboard eventually broke and so did the mouse pad.  So we were carting an open laptop around, along with a plug in keyboard and mouse. That set up could not make it to shore on the dinghy!
Luckily I still had my tablet. That could go to shore, and connect to the WiFi while we were there.
Then our camera broke. No camera, no pictures. Luckily we were in a place where we could receive packages, and my dad was amazing enough to swap his working camera for our broken one. There were not exactly any repair centres near us!
Then as soon as I got a working camera, the charging port on my tablet broke. I found a place to fix it and was told it had been replaced.. but as soon as we left Roatan it broke again. They had just cleaned up the old one.
So no tablet, which had all my blog posts and edited pictures on it.
Then my phone screen broke as well.
I tried to get them fixed… but I was met with quizzical expressions or just plain out laughter in Honduras, Cuba, Jamaica and finally Bermuda. One guy told me to just throw my phone away and buy a new one, because there was no way i could get it repsired. Then I found a place that could replace the tablet’s charging port in Bermuda (which is $5 online, if you have an address you send it to and the time to wait for it). But he wanted $250USD.
So we waited. Finally, we arrived in the Azores and my tablet got fixed. I have a working camera, and my phone is holding on. Hooray!
That's when the laptop decided to die for good. So without the laptop, everything else is useless.  I can't get photos off the camera. I can't empty the sd card on my phone or put old photos into storage. And we can't access any media (no movies!).
So that's why you haven't heard from us. We completely fail at keeping electronics safe at sea.
Lessons to be learned:
Invest in a kickass dry box for electronics, especially laptops. Dry bags don't cut it. And they're a pain to roll up so it's easy to just store the laptop properly later… but later on you're using it again.  Dry box. They're expensive. Just shut your eyes and hand over the cash. Do it.
Even if your camera is stored somewhere safe, it's not safe. Our DSLR camera now goes in a zip lock bag 100% of the time before it goes back in the camera bag. Just sticking the camera bag in a dry bag isn't good enough.
And finally:
Electronics and boats don't mix. I knew this already, but until you're on your 3rd laptop in 3 years even though you've been super careful, it's hard to fully grasp how destructive salt air is.
Our new laptop is enroute to the Azores. Pictures and blog posts will be updated again soon.
In the meantime, here's whatever pretty pictures I decide to grab off my phone before I hit upload. Unedited and from the Azores (because I managed to put older ones into storage before the laptop died).
Peace out
Xxx Monique


  1. Beautiful photos. I'd love to walk on the hills. Glad to hear you are both ok!

  2. Glad you are doing well, Azores look beautiful. Hope it was an uneventful sail.
    Jennifer & Royce
    S/V Cerca Trova