Day 83 November 14 Panama City to Carti
Today was a day I had been anticipating since the inception of the whole adventure.
The plan was for the bikers that were on the Stahlratte to meet at the Hostel and ride to Carti as a group.
At 7:30 we headed out with 6 of the 11 riders through the busy traffic of Panama City.
The first 70km or so was on the main highway east of the city. We turned onto the Carti road and were treated to a fabulous roller coaster ride the rest of the way to the pier.
There was one rider already there and the other 4 bikes appeared shortly after. The ship was off shore but slowly making its’ way to the dock while we began to queue the bikes on the concrete pier.
I was first in line and we all began to remove the luggage from the machines.
The gear was placed in small tenders and shuttled to the ship. Most of us also went to the ship to keep the pier clear. The 130 foot vessel inched it’s way to the pier under the expert guidance of Captain Ludwig.
The hoisting of the bikes began in frenzy and each one was manoeuvred over the side and onto the deck. The crew was obviously experienced and handled the bikes with care and skill.
Pavel’s 2 stroke Jawa 350 being loaded
Before long all the motorcycles were on board and we motored to a nearby island where we were to stay for the night in a Kuna village.
The accommodations were actually some of the residences of a few of the villagers.
In their thatched huts we had a choice of hammocks or beds.
The beds were pretty lumpy but I choose one and then started to explore the small island. The entire island is covered with thatched huts of the 500 people living there.
Toilets a just open holes to the ocean and unfortunately the water’s edge is covered with litter.
Some craft work on display
It’s a lifestyle these people have become accustomed to but it was a bit of a shock to my western eyes.
The night was restless for me and the morning couldn’t come soon enough.