July 22, 2012
Quick apology to all our avid readers ( if you are reading this then that’s you!). We have not had great Internet and I have neglected following our trail along the way. Well I now have a data sim card so should be able to post more often and will endeavour to do so.
We have travelled to Bequia where we spent some pleasant days including a great jam session with the famous ( locally) Socony guitarist and personality. We then high tailed it down to union Island and stayed in a couple of different bays. The swell helped us to decide to move over to Petite St Vincent and Petite Martinique.
We went to book out at Clifton back in Union Island which is only 5 miles away. However a tropical squal blew through and we had our first big blow at 45 mph of wind pushing us at 6.8 knots after we had dropped all the sails. We stayed in the channel until it blew through before going to anchor in the bay.
After union island we went to Carriacou where we made various boat improvements including a Bimini extension and moving the wind generator on to the sugar scoop to make it stronger ( improve the angle of bracing).
I also learned to sail the Fram. It is a local design that looks like a coffin with a sail added and a rope to steer the rudder. Very unstable but good fun non the less. I also helped run a sailing session for the kids of Carriacou. We had a great musical night on lard the yacht Boldly Go before leaving for our final leg back to Grenada.
June 14, 2012
We decided to sail to the south of St Lucia to make the journey to Bequia do able in a day. ( we had decided to boycott St Vincent again due to the hassle you get from the boat boys.). Veux – Fort is a delightful town with none of the hassle we associated with Soufriese. We found it cheap and very friendly and will definitely stop here again to provision on the way back up. The only down side was that on the 2nd night the anchorage was rolly and we ended up getting up at 5 am to leave for Bequia. Not a bad thing as we arrived by 3 pm.
June 13, 2012
We moved from Rodney Bay to Marigot Bay and anchored exactly where we had stayed on our way up. Our first night we met up with Geoff Banham who I met on mu very first trip out here with JSASTC training vessel in 2010. We had a few beers and put the world to rights. Steve from Christina Pearl had not been to Rodney Bay before as was keen to explore. That meant walking up the hill to the viewing point at the top ( this is a kin to going up to the base camp of mount Everest). Having let him snap is hearts content with pictures we decided to descend an alternative route that lead back down to a restaurant that is not connected to the rest of the marina complex. So for the lack of 30 meters of walk way we had to hitch a ride with a boat to take us back to the dinghy dock. Pizza for lunch and then after a happy hour at the Doo Littles hotel resort ( made famous in the Rex Harrison film Doctor Doo Little). A great visit.
June 12, 2012
May 27, 2012
May 23, 2012
April 07, 2012
Can not believe we have been here a month, time has just flown by. We will depart tomorrow for St Martins (about 90 miles to the North west. We have met so many lovely folk here – but now that Race Week is finished everyone is bugging out.
Classic week was all about partying and watching some great looking boats (some old and some replicas of old, some big and some not so big). We went out on a RIB to see the finish on a couple of days with Steve from “Christina Pearl” then on the last day we went out on the start line – he said get me close and I had him right in the middle of the start dodging the boats as they charged across the line – then we chased them and actually got airbourne at one stage – but got some great close ups. 3 other boats went out with us for my birthday meal, which was free for me as the resturant (The Mad Mongoose) doesnt charge on your birthday.
Race Week we were helping on Committee boat A. Mandy was the recorder and I did the start flags and blew the horn as they finished the race. We saw lots of exciting action (again close up)
We went to see Bob Marleys son (Ky-Mani Marley) and also we had VIP tickets to the final award ceremony. During the week we managed to get 5 free t-shirts and 3 free hats each.
After the races the weather was pretty grim. No wind and it drizzled the first day. Spent the day scrubbing the boat and minor jobs ready for the off. The next day the heavens opened up – we filled our trug buckets up twice and filtered them in to the water tank (I recon about 100 litres worth) the dinghy got pretty full as well so I had to bail it then lift it and pull the bung to stop it sinking.
The rain fall coming off the hills made a brown slick in the anchorage and as it approached us we saw 2 great big fish (about the size of me – OK maybe half the size of me, but they were whompers) No more swimming to clean the boat for a while!!!
We decided to book out from Jolly Harbour as you do not pay the National park fees from there and we are heading North West anyway towards St Martin. We are all booked out and provisioned and ready for the off but will leave between 11 and 12:00hrs to ensure getting there in daylight after an overnight sail.
April 06, 2012
When we got back from our trip back to the UK we needed to move out of the marina and go and anchor. We were visited by Steve (Christina Pearl) and Sam and Adrian (Blue Moon) and decided the anchorage was just too roly. A 2-3 hour sail would put us in Falmouth harbour which was better sheltered.
Falmouth is very nice and we have met a whole bunch of people here. Our direct neighbours are John and Joanne from South Africa (Out of Africa).
We have taken the bus in to St Johns to see where we need to be for when Janet and Mick arrive on their cruise ship. We have decided that St Johns is just too built up and commercial for showing them around, so I will collect them on the bus and bring them back to Falmouth Harbour which is far nicer.
Wednesday night was a jammin’ session in English harbour where I played my soprano saxophone with a variety of people playing different instruments. During the night Mandy and Steve managed to agree to hike up to Shirley heights to see the views. To say it was a steep climb best left to Billy goats would not be far wrong. However, the views at the top were just amazing and a must see (If only once in your life).
“Out of Africa”, “Christina Pearl” and “Secret Smile” hired a car and went out and about exploring all over Antigua. We also filled up gas bottles (as John kept saying – it pays for the car the price you save) and did a monthly shop at a hypermarket. We saw devils bridge and the blow whole and a whole heap of stuff.
April 04, 2012
Well now we are back in the sunny Caribbean it seems like we visited another world far away – a land of hussle and bussle! We did – we travelled back to the UK for the wedding of Richard and Ann-marie and to cram 6 months of visiting, shopping and catching up (in just 2 weeks).
We had a superb time catching up with folks bouncing from family to friends and back to family like a shiny ball in a pinball machine (I can here pinball wizard in my minds eye – or should I say ear)
Thank you everyone who hosted us – and put up with stories of our adventures and faking impressedness of our tans (Rapidly vanishing in the UK weather – but now back on the mend)
The wedding was superb and the weather was sunny (If not quite as warm as we have been use to) and an opportunity to meet up with family and friends who we have not seen for years in some cases.
As if on cue as we were due to leave the weather turned to snow blizzards in Scotland and a cold snap down south – helping us once again head for sunnier climes.
March 17, 2012
We decided to set off bright and early from Guadeloupe and was under sail by 0630hrs. We decided that “Bob” our Hydrovane could earn his keep and steer us to Antigua. Once we had settled in to the course he kept us going in a straight line between 6 and a half and 7 knots. We settled down to do the normal cruisers thing – read books! Just before I settled down in to it I decided to deploy “Marvin” – our pink squid lure – Marvin because if it was left to him we would be hank marvin.
I take it all back, half way across Mandy noticed we had caught a fish. I pulled him in and got her to get the gaff (we have only ever used it for mooring. It was not clear what we had caught but as it got nearer it looked bigger than our usual tiddlers.) I reached out with the gaff and caught him nearly first time. Pulled him on board and the lure fell out of his mouth. They say kill your fish by putting alcohol in to his gills. Well he deserves my finest rum as he is my finest fish. He seems to like rum as he wiggles about with pleasure. We identify him as a Wahoo – which is a coincidence because we were both shouting wahoo when we landed him. We were very brave and gutted and chopped him immediately so he would fit in the fridge. 10 buckets of sea water and a scrubbing brush later and you would never have known our cock pit had turned in to a fish abattoir.
Jolly harbour is turquoise blue, very shallow and beautiful. Once booked in and anchored we went a shore to see the facilities and the supermarket is brill, and the showers and toilets seem to be open to one and all.