Sailing in search of fruit

On Monday the 26th, the lack of a breeze at Waisaladup, coupled
with the uncomfortable roll, led us to move west and anchor next
to Miriadiadup just a few miles away. We stayed far from shore
and enjoyed the cooling breezes anchoring in the open provides.
Nonetheless, it is apparent that the weather pattern has
changed from breezy and comfortable to pretty calm, more humid,
and less comfortable.

Tueday morning we set out for Kanildup island which promised
good snorkelling, protection from swells, and hopefully a
breeze. One hour out we heard someone call in on VHF channel
72, the working channel for cruisers in Panama, that the fresh
fruit and vegetable boat out of Nargana would be coming to Coco
Bandero Cays the next morning. We were down to our last cucumber
and orange, so we changed course for Coco Bandero. We anchored
in front of Orduptarboat Cay, joining one other boat. Two
others came in later. We did not really like this place. The
wind was still calm and the water way murky. An enterprising
Kuna in an outboard powered canoe came by to offer us
langoustine, eggs, and chicken and his willingness to provide us
with fruit and vegetables the next day. His name is Serapio
Deleon. We turned down the langoustine, but bought a cut-up
chicken (“freshly killed” he said), and a dozen unrefrigerated
eggs. He also took away 7 bags of trash that had been
accumulating in the stern locker. We placed an order for a long
list of fruits and vegetables that he would deliver the next
day. We figured that the next day we would get our produce from
him or from the produce boat out of Nargana, or both. One or
both were certain to come through with some fresh food. (The
chicken turned out to be quite tasty).

This morning, Wednesday, we learned two other bits of news
from asking questions of other cruisers on channel 72. First,
Mr. Deleon did not have a reputation for reliability with
everyone, and, second, that the produce boat from Nargana would
also be stopping at Kanildup. So off to Kanildup we went. We
figured that Mr. Deleon would find us there since the channel
from his home town of Rio Azucar to Coco Bandeira took him right
past Kanildup. Kanildup is very pretty and there at 10 boats at
anchor — a real crowd. We were afraid to go snorkelling or
exploring in the dinghy for fear of missing one or both of our
produce guys. By 4:00 pm it seemed that we had been stood up,
and got ready to go snorkelling. Just then Deleon showed up and
said he would return in five minutes. Twenty minutes later the
Nargana produce boat came along side and, since Deleon was still
doing business with another boat at the other end of the
anchorage, we bought what we could from their picked-over stock.
We got a watermelon, an over-ripe canteloupe, three
pineapples, cucumbers, and limes. Deleon never did come back to
talk to us, and we suppose that the fruit that we ordered the
day before was sold to other boaters or never acquired in the
first place. We did not place a deposit on our order, so
nothing was lost except a half of a day of waiting around.

We will hang around here at least another day since we never
did get a chance to snorkel. Our position is N 9 degrees 28.7
minutes, W 78 degrees 38.2 minutes.