Motu Atua: aiming for Panama

Published on 24 january 2018 at 0h00

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We were approaching San Juan, Puerto Rico. After having tried several times to contact the marina, then the authorities, to report our arrival at San Juan ‘illegally’, we anchored next to the ferry quay. The next day, we reported to the customs, to explain our situation. Drama: What, you dare to arrive in the United States without a visa? Er…yes, sir. OK, you will have to pay the various costs and taxes for the visas – we didn’t understand everything, just the price to be paid, 2,500 dollars! What? Luckily, we were dealing with a customs officer who spoke French, and we carried out the best negotiation of our lives. We explained to him that we just wanted to take on fuel and we’d leave again, even if we had to do it on just one engine. And therefore after a lot of prevarication, we paid nothing and got a 6-month visa! We actually stayed for two days, and noted that our port engine had just got a bit hot. After doing a bit of shopping and having a look at San Juan’s very attractive old town, we set off again, with full tanks of diesel of course, heading for the ...

This article appeared in issue 158. To read the article in full, buy this issue individually

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