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The Cruising Adventures of Joan & Ben Schuetz aboard  
Francesca
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      Part 1:  Caribbean Bound   |         Part 2: Southern ICW   |         Part 2A:  Preparing to cross the stream   |         Part 3: Cuban Delights   |         Part 4: Great Hospitality, Awful Beaurocracy   |         Part 4a: Interesting weather   |         Part 5: Lo siento (I'm sorry) no lobsters   |         Part 6: If you make plans, don't tell anyone   |         Part 7: At the western tip of Cuba   |         Part 8:  War Stories   |         Part 9:  Hanging out at Isla Mujeres, Mexico   |         Part 10: Isla Mujeres to Puerto Aventuras   |         Part 11: Bahia Ascension y Bahia del Espiritos Santos   |         Part 12: Oooh, the weather is so exciting. . . .   |         Part 13:  The illegal aliens beat it over the border   |         Part 14: San Pedro and Caye Caulker, Belize   |         Part 15: Bluefield Range (Belize)   |         Part 15A: Waiting for good weather at Bluefield Range   |         Part 16: Rio Dulce Bound   |         Part 17:  On the Rio   |         Part 18: A Spectacular Couple of Days   |         Part 19:  On to Lago Izabal   |         Part 20: More on Lago Izabal   |         Part 21: Rainbow on a full moon   |         Part 22: At the dock            |         Part 23:  It gets better & better & . . . .   |         Part 24: Antigua, Lake Atitlan, Chichicastenango   |         Part 25: Panajacel and Chichi   |         Part 26: Heide heads home   |         Part 27: Leaving river city for a while   |         Part 28: Back to Belize   |         Part 29: Time out for paradise   |         Part 30: Natures way   |         Part 31: Best of the best   |         Part 32: Jack's Cay No - Glover's Reef Si   |         Part 33:  A few days of ambling   |         Part 34: Treasures of a Lifetime   |         Part 35:  It's a better day today   |         Part 36:  The loss of a friend   |         Part 37:  Rite of passage   |         Part 38:  The last bit of open water   |         Part 39: 1000 miles and counting   |        Part 40:  Shoes-, me?

      Part 26: Heide heads home
Friday, 31 March 2000

There hasn't been much happening lately.  Last week we circumnavigated Lago Izabal again, this time with Delphys, but aside from that there is little new stuff to report.  We did find the mother load of howler monkeys though.  They entertained us for hours.

Heide left Wednesday to return to the States.  Two of their friends from Minnesota came down to make the trip with them.  We are going to follow them via the NW Caribbean Net on single side band.  Heide doesn't have an SSB, but we can call for a health and welfare check from any other boat who has seen or talked to them on VHF.  The system works pretty well.  We already miss them a lot.

It's about as hot as it is going to get here now.  Yesterday, 95 degrees.  Each day, around noon, an easterly breeze picks up that helps, but in the protection of Suzannah's Marina & Lagoon, we don't get much of it.  Air conditioning is usually the best answer,  but the power isn't always good.  Sometimes it sags down to 100 volts or so and the AC gets unhappy.

In two weeks, we plan to get back out to sea and cruise back up through the cays of the Belizean barrier reef through the month of May.  There are a lot of areas that we missed on the way down.   The trade winds will make it nice and comfortable too.  When we return to the Rio in late May, we will find a spot to tie up that gets more air.

David Vroom and Pat Wallace, Raychem (now Tyco) friends have rounded up some used computers and are shipping them here for the indian village.  We plan to help where we can throughout the summer and fall.  I'll keep you up to date.

Our first novel is complete.  In my working years, there was sometimes criticism of my scientific reports as having been fictional, but this was my first honest attempt at writing fiction.  Some friends here have read it and think its pretty good.  It's a kind of contemporary thing titled “No Langosta Rocas” (No Lobster Rocks).  The story has some science and science fiction, sea tales, an international incident, and an internet surprise.  I tried my best to make it a plausible maybe even believable story.   So, I wonder if anyone out there has any contact with a writers agent, publisher or even just some words of wisdom.  I hear that the road for a newbie author is pretty rocky so I can use all the help I can get.

If anyone is interested, it would be a good time to come for a visit.  The cruise to Belize will be a good one with warm clear water, good fishing and lots of snorkeling.

I probably won't send out another newsletter for a couple of weeks unless something interesting happens.

More.

Joan, Ben & Maggie