We got up at a leisurely 7am for the 10 mile trip to East Holndas Cays from our anchorage at Limmon Cay. A large squall came through the anchorage last night at about 3AM, bringing thick rain drops and wind that filled our heads with its howling. The boat anchor held steady, and it was over in 15 minutes; an inconvenience, and we dropped back to sleep quickly. In the morning, we could see the way out of the anchorage, a few hundred yards at most, to our right, but the direct route was shallow and filled with shoals so the real way out was a mile of mazes and switchbacks that at one point passed an unlucky boat sitting on the shoal that thought it could take the short-cut and didn’t make it. The San Blas Islands are an archipelago spread over 100 miles with 360+ islands. Most are uninhabited. The islands that have people are all a 1st nations’ people called Kuna. No one else is allowed to live here. Once outside the anchorage, we raised the sails for the smooth, quiet sail to Holandes. The Kuna are an interesting people, not shy, but forbidden by their laws from inter-marrying. They originally shared the watery jungle regions of Panama and Colombia known as the Darien along with the Wounaan and the Embera. For whatever reason the Kuna decide (or were forced ) to inhabit the set of islands off the Caribbean Panama coast known as the San Blas or more lately as Kuna Yana. The Kuna are been known for their crafts, particularly molas, multi layer cloth designs created by cutting and hand sewing layers of cloth. Some of them are spectacular. We found the simplest (tourist Mola) to be inexpensive, but the detailed designs with great compositions are over a $100. They get around the islands with canoe like wood boats called Ulus’, sometimes with a sail. Judy and I hooked up with a Kuna man about the time we needed to go see the Panama Officials in Porvenir, to check out of the country and get the piece of official paper allowing us to sail from one country (to Colombai) to another, a zarpe. Since we needed a ride from the boat to shore and he was available he offered us rides in his ulu. There are 360 islands as I said; many are protected by a barrier reef making the island waters protected from waves. Today we have sailed and anchored between two islands with a turquoise blue – green water. Anchored in about 15 feet of water the twisty passage way to this place involved dodging coral reefs, rocks, and sand bars . Not a trip for the faint of heart. But once here, more like dream than reality. The barrier reef with it’s battering waves are about ½ mile away but visible. Inside it’s quiet. Tomorrow we’ll snorkel to see what lies beneath the water although we can see the bottom where we are anchored.