Good TradeWinds, Exilarating Passages, Delightful Anchorages and
27 May 2009 | The Grenedines: Bequia, Canouan, Tabago Cays, Union, Mayreau and back to
Becca B., first mate, only mate
Wow, we are getting some tropical waves barreling thru the Windwards and the satellite pictures are indicating a steady stream of them that are expecting to continue well into July. Nothing anything stronger right now or we'd be boogy woogiin' it to Grenada in a flash. We will check with the weather gurus one last time after we pick up the laundry to see today's weather forecast playing with our destiny. The satellite pics are pretty impressive for a week more of this, but we just got back here to Union Island and signed up for more of the Grenedines. Before we knew about these back to back t waves we were heading back to the Tabago Cays for the third time. Now we don't know what we will do, Cariacou or Tabago Cays? That is the question.
Ok, I'm taking responsibility for my expatiating again. Help, I need helpI!! I started this "Grenedine" blog entry yesterday, one month to the day after we arrived in the Grenedines, and it was five pages without even trying. I'm not kidding about being in love with this place. We've said it before and we're starting to sound redundant but seriously, we are IN LOVE and truly blessed to be on this journey. I know this hard to believe, but we're only scratching the surface in describing all the positive benefits of a trip like this. Emotionally, psychologically, artistically, communicatively, facing fears, etc...are a small peek.
Yes, in LOVE with the Grenedines and with each other. Dudley hasn't thrown me overboard YET...not to say that he hasn't thought of it from time to time, so I guess that's proof positive, right?
So I promise to give you all the abridged version and save the five pages for my journal, so here's another attempt.
We entered Bequia with a blast, love those island hops, and got shot. Photographically speaking of course. Kenmore@photoaction.com, phtographer extrordinaire sold us some great action (or moving, under sail) shots of Altair with Bequia behind us. This was our first peak at the Grenedines. We were wondering what that crazy person in a rubber dingy, with his bow in the air, in these big seas, off the northwest coast of Bequia, waving something big, was doing out of the protection of the Admiralty Bay. Can't wait to share. We only stayed a few days, but really wanted more. I think we might just find that humble, natural, white crescent beach , lush mountain backdrop, place to choose a wedding spot. We met up with Sea Wings, Interlude and Dream Chaser and then we met two Frenchies, Josee and Michael on S/V Epsilon. We all met daily to check out the great snorkeling, had a wicked beach party and squeezed in a bus ride to the Old Hegg Turtle Sanctuary on the windward coast. The turtle savior, Orton, "Brother" King, was right at the top of the list for Bequia, for this tree and sea hugger at least, and then we left. Wheennnnn.
Our rapid pace thru Canouan, the next St. Vincentian island south, but not before we enjoyed day two of the three day Whit/Sun/Tide Regatta. Pics should tell the story of a high energy day. Music was filling the air, food was being cooked along the beach, and along the village behind that beach, and racers were immersed in one stage or another in the rigging of these cool sailboats up on the shore. These traditional sloops are fishing and whaling boats of old and fancy new replicas alike getting syked for the day's racing. We got a sweet glimpse of the locals embracing their heritage. Our time there was short, but memorable with pizza on Interlude, by the gourmet 'girls', Cheryl and Karen, to a happy hour dressed like 'proper yachtsmen' at the Tamirand Resort with Lynn and Lew on Sea Wings and then being in the thick of things early in the day of the racers. The resort was showing signs of hurricane season approaching and ghost villages are evident everywhere lately...not to mention the state of cruisers evacuating lastly. We like that anchorage with just a few boats not eager to drop an anchor on top of yours. Hip Hip Horray!
Here we go again, 'cause our goal is to reach the Tabago Cays with plenty of time to enjoy them. We truly feel like we are on vacation here. Nobody lives here. It just yachties, which are fewer now too, immersing ourselves into this plentiful aquatic sea life. That we did, it's so spectacular. We anchored just behind the huge, 2 mile long, Horseshoe Reef where you get all the wind a hot flashing, redheaded, artsy, loud, A-type, Aries woman could want, but no seas. Our batteries were topped off, with the wind generator paying for itself now that we are in the "Windwards", which is a really good feeling anytime. We were mesmerized and I know we've said this before but I'm going to learn Spanish and French better so I can share some different adjectives. The turtle sanctuary is roped off and further protected, so you swim with them off the grassy area at the south side of "Baradel". Thanks for the brilliant folks who work so hard to save our oceans and all they encompass for our children.
Most everybody we've been traveling with since Antiqua are doing the insurance racing! Depending on your latitude and the price you paid to insure your 'home' is why every is rushing to Grenada, Trinidad or Venezuela. Then you pay less the earlier you get out of the hurricane 'box'. We stopped trying to keep up with the 'Jones' and we're not doing the insurance two step, so we're going back to Tabago Cays if we can.
It was everything we could do to tear ourselves from this water wonderworld. But we did, twice. We saw Union, loved the island, loved, Janti's Happy Island, built and operated by him when he wanted to clean up the village of Clifton and help bring back the tourists. He removed all the conch shells littering the town and started the foundation for "Happy Island"...It's now a bar and restaurant just inside Newlands Reef with the rest of us. We met the wife of Enrique, Elaina, the husband and wife kitesurfers team. They liked kitesurfing here behind Newlands Reef for the same reason they loved it in the TC's. They have a lots of wind, no waves.These fun folks also have a 'guest house' biz called LaCigala in Las Roques, Venezuela. We went to thier site and it's gorgeous so maybe we can go there on our way to Central America next year. They like to entertain us 'flying' about the anchorages because they can. They are in great shape and we hate them...hehe.
We also made a tiny visit to Mayreau. It's the only island in the marine park where people live. Not that many mind ya, but we managed to meet Robert, at Righteous & de Youths. Robert is a well known Rastafarian who can up the groove with some Bob Marley and other Raggae. The restaurant is an ongoing artform of add ons and design who has earned him "the character and spot of the island". We sat for a couple of hours, after our one and only hike to the top of the windward side at the really old church. The really old graveyard sweeping into the lee bay was truly beautiful too. There was a young french couple that joined us at Robert's place and we were privy to the constant stream of his daugters and granddaughters. The granddaughter, Vera, at the congo drums with her little shy friend was demonstrative and humorously entertaining for such a youngan. We did get violated there when someone, cruiser or local, don't know, stole the fuel out of our dink tank. Shit happens, and it was only 4-5 US gallons, a violation none the less.
Our second week is up, fini, kaput at the Tabago Cays...we have in fact purchased another month of which we were realistically going to use 2 weeks at most. We still want to go back, but this weather is going to keep us here in Union for possibly a week! You'll know when we know!
Do we go back north (only 2.5 nm in reef painted trails) or south to Cariacou? Stay tuned...
Hugs, Dudley and Bec, S/V Altair
Hey, Hey Hey...Just thought I'd start adding these wishes each month so everybody knows that we're thinking about ya! It's been hard getting wifi on the boat since Antiqua, so when we do we'll send our wishes. Happy Birthday John Clark. Happy Birthday Caroleena, Grace and your daughater Miranda a Happy Happy Birthday. Happy Anniversary Elaine and Jim. Love you lots!