We've been on the island of Grenada for 23 days! We've been searching everywhere for a 110v fan for the months of work we have on the good ship Altair! It's always hot at a marina. I mean we really scoured every hardware store, marine store and electrical shop, within bus distance and even returned repeatly, with promises of fans arriving daily! There were extension cords for 120 in and 120 out, but all 240 appliances. Everywhere! Now what? Make up a cord from 240 to 120? Do we still need a transformer? Order the fan from theStates?
Lucy and Richard, our neighbors on S/V Marie Galante II, just came back from the Carenage and found a 120v fan! We had been to A & A Hardware already, but they just got two in! Big squat and bigger on LEGS! Finally, three weeks later, thank you both, we have a really huge fan. They are cool too!
We got BIG SQUAT. At last! Yes, it's gigantic. It's loud, but surprisingly calm in it's similarity to a jet plane idling really far away. Yet we are in the shade and cool! Just have to turn the music up a bit. Dudley loves rock and roll!
A lot of adjusting to do. It's HUGE. We've found a way to keep in under the table and the air starts blasting out to the end of the top. It's really powerful, so that air hits us, not the things on the table, the cushions and still cools the entire cabin. It's doesn't blow at the table making everything fly! We just can't close the table to get forward in Altair easier with this monster under there!
Now we're not JUST a pair of hunchbacks, we're really COOL hunchbacks!
The things we do in the name of travel...for a year a half on a small sailboat...at a dock...
I know what Dudley is doing! When we get back to that tiny townhouse it's gonna seem a mega mansion. After stooping, crawling, bending in positions I never thought possible on Altair, our townhouse is gonna be huge. To get into the pantry, dig way back in the locker behind the head for a roll of t-paper, oh, and a roll of paper towels...hah, you need to be a gymnist. If you need something from the pantry, you hang into it at the waist and and hope you don't fall in.
Everybody should do this at least once in their life! A whole new perspective of "what you can do with what you've got". Who knew I'd be happy to get a fan.
Life is good.
And we're waaaaay cool!
Dudley and Bec
07/31/2009, Right here alongside the dock at PLM
The reason we are at ANOTHER marina, is because hurricane season here in Grenada has to be a work place! This marina is a work in progress, therefore, providing a beautiful place to work on Altair is an appropriate place for us! There's a refreshing pool to chill in after the 'work', so we plan to join all our other buddies doing the same.
The remainder of July had us meeting with sailmakers to repair our small jib and price some sunbrella. We got a virus or a very bad problem when loading IE8 on our laptop and got that fixed, thanks to Danielle and Roger on Chocobo! (They have their boat on the the hard in Curacao while backpacking thru Peru and Boliva, very cool, eh?). We had to order a ton of sunbrella and tools from the States for my projects at a small fortune. Then we started with removing the old Ideal windlass, chain, rode, the washdown connector, and hawse pipe in preparation for the fiberglass work to seal all those old holes.
We do know how to mix work with pleasure and managed many get togethers with Scott, Derrick, Richard and Lucie, Mitae and Larry, Pepe and Big Bear, Marilyn and Kent, Wendy and Doug, Carrie and Malcom, Nellie and Phil, and Becky and Tofer and their gang, and all the marina people who are always ready to make us comfortable.
This is where it's all going to happen! I've requested one of the picnic tables be brought here alongside Altair for my sewing needs...nice big, shady and airy workstation! Wish me luck! I first tried to wiggle my way into one of these beautiful little cottages that don't seem to be fully occupied yet but it doesn't look like that's going to happen.
August should be very busy!
07/24/2009, Port Louis Marina
I guess you've noticed by now that we've decided to stay here at Port Louis Marina! It's very nice as you can see from the photo album entitled "Port Louis/Camper Nicholson Posh Digs. The boat hasn't moved on the tracking map, even though we've sure been moving around on this super Spice Island called Grenada!
This particular night was hosted by our marina and Danny Donelan, the sales and marketing co-ordinator extraordinaire! He decided to kick it up a notch and give it a theme..."the 80's"... along with introducing the costumes available for Carnival! If you didn't want to join in with the nuts dressing for the 80's ( just in case you weren't old enough to remember it first hand or too old and can't remember, hehe) then you could wear all white and be models for the various customes available for carnival!
As you can see, Lucy, Richard, Dudley and I participated to the max, spending all week searching for colored hair spray, huge earrings, bangle bracelets, glitter and blue eyeshadow! The guys were champs in playing along and just for the record Dudley and I won first place! Lucie and Richard won second place, but truth be known, we were the only ones who dressed up so winning wasn't a challenge now was it? Do we have to tell you that we had fun? The costumes for Carnival are really gorgeous!
Check out the album under "80's Bash and Carnival Models".
Dudley and Bec
07/23/2009, Lexus Restaurant...with a killer view!
Dudley is truly my idol. I really mean it when I say that Tina Turner and Dudley Clark are my inspiration!
HAPPY BIRTHDAY DUDLEY! What a great journey to be on and a great man you are! This is hard to believe, but the man of my dreams, my captain, my best friend, the love of my life is 78 years old today! NO WAY!!! I can't believe it either!
Lucie and Richard, our new best friends and neighbors here at Port Louis Marina are a blast and joined us for dinner at Lexus Restaurant a nice hike up the hill from our marina. And what a great sunset and view of Grand Anse Beach! We are on Moonddancer here, being treated by our friends Nellie and Phil to a mini vacation away from the marina.
Grenada is magnificent and so areyou, Honey!
I love you...More!
07/19/2009, The Lagoon @ St. Georges
This is Becky! Becky Burton, Wife of "Tofer" and mother of 5 amazing kids, four boys and Emily! She is truly a miracle woman! She beautiful, talented, is first mate, chef, teacher, repair woman, mother, wife, and if that's not enough, works in the restaurant biz to help augment Christopher's boat delivery biz. The entire family have been cruising, home schooling, exploring, learning to be team players and loving the cruising sailing life for a couple of years now!
We met this awesome, loving family in Salinas, on the south coast of Puerto Rico back May of 2008. We've admired them thru e-mail and now they are here! We're so happy to be in their company!
They have a business of taking on troubled kids, teaching them all the skills they've tought their own, and giving them back after all of them have reached milestones only their parents dreamed about. So that means they have as many as 7 sometimes nine people taking on no more than two "clients' at a time on a 45' sailboat named Wandering Dolphin. Talk about amazing! When they started the 'troubled teen' program back at home in the US, thier home burned down. We along with everybody who knows them are voting for them to be the recipients of a "home" on one of those tv programs. They surely would qualify as "worthy"!
HAT'S OFF TO YOU BECKY! Oh and you too, Christoper, hehe.
07/14/2009, Phare Blue Marina, A Delicous South Coast Spot!
Our plan was to rent a car and check out the south coast to see where we would tie up for all the work Altair needs. Just as predicted, the fun activites are non-stop and it's going to be hard to squeeze in the work projects. Danny, Port Louis Marina's Sales and Marketing genious, announed to all of us here at the Port Louis Marina that Phare Blue is having a happy hour and all the marinas are invited.
Thanks to Danny we got a ride to check out this beautiful harbor and see what this marina is about. So we had to join in the drinking, eating and meeting of more of our favorite cruiser types while we were at it. This marina is really beautiful and there are lots of locals, cruisers too, who are very active in making sure we protect, explore and share the beauty of this island.
Check out the Phare Blue Photo Album. The huge, steel yacht I'm standing on is a Swedish Light Ship and Restaurant and rumor has us anticipating a culinary treat. This ship also boasts the marina office, cruiser's lounge, upper deck restaurant, museum lounge, and has a very cool historical old engine room. Great spot.
This place is gorgeous but we don't know that we can afford it, just looks expensive. Everything that evening was top brass, including the servers passing out beautiful hors d'oeuvres and glitzy munchies on silver tray and linen draped over their arms. That's a far cry from the camping we do on Altair. Also, it's very far from everything. It's difficult to get around without walking miles to buses and taking a whole day for 'picking' up parts, etc. You know we'll keep you posted...pun intended.
Thanks again Danny...you are the 'cruising director', making sure we don't miss a thing!
Dudley and Bec
Fourteen of us got together and organised the famous taxi driver Cutty to take us at 18:15 up to the Levera National Park. Cutty organised us a guide and we picked up Dora near to our destination some two hour drive away.
We stopped just shy of the beach to have a talk from Dora, who explained a little about the leatherback turtle species, telling us of one recorded marathon swim of 16,000 miles in one season, turtles gain sexual maturity somewhere between fifteen and thirty and their life expectancy being between eighty and one hundred years (obviously facts to be checked on the net later). On arrival we walked down the very dark beach until we met wardens Kester and Becks. Kester had worked for the last four years protecting his charges. Becks was on a one month stint awaiting the start of her Law Degree Course at Edinburgh University - we wish her luck for that. She told us that the most she had seen in one night was twenty seven ladies, her busiest night, now the average is four as it is late in the season.
We had to wait a while while our lady got settled in to her dig, then we could approach. We were only allowed to use red light torches as not to put off any other ladies that might journey up the beach and to not confuse any babies en route to the sea, should we be lucky enough for any hatchlings to chose tonight to begin their epic struggle for life.
Our lady was called WC (west Caribbean) 5573 as her tag read, Becks and Kester recorded her statistics - she measured 1.83 metres (shell length) and 1.18 wide. Dora told me she was not a big leatherback by any means. Becks and Kester on midwife duty. They saw our lady was digging too close to another nest so they filled in as she dug.
Our lady was called WC (west Caribbean) 5573 as her tag read, Becks and Kester on midwife duty recorded her statistics - she measured 1.83 metres (shell length) and 1.18m wide. Dora told me she was not a big leatherback by any means. They saw our lady was digging too close to another nest so they filled in as she dug.Once she began laying Becks scooped her eggs into a bucket to put them further away from the original nest. Our lady was now in a trance-like state so we could stroke her. Being so close to this enormous creature from the deep was truly a sensational and remarkable event in our lives. One we will never forget. While this was going on another lady appeared out of the surf near us, she had to be gently shooed along the beach. After our lady had finished we watched her powerful front flippers pile the sand back for her rear flippers to fill in the hole and neatly pat it down. I didn't care that I was being eaten alive by mossies, even though I had thoroughly sprayed myself. Then it sadly was time to walk back to the bus. As we slowly wandered we found where the second lady had settled to her digging, she was left in peace as she was nowhere near known nests. Twenty feet beyond her was lady number three. Becks and Kester had their work cut out, no sooner than they had buried our bucket of eggs they had to carry on their research on these other ladies.Once she began laying Becks scooped her eggs into a bucket to put them further away from the original nest. Our lady was now in a trance-like state so we could stroke her. Being so close to this enormous creature from the deep was truly a sensational and remarkable event in our lives. One we will never forget. While this was going on another lady appeared out of the surf near us, she had to be gently shooed along the beach. After our lady had finished we watched her powerful front flippers pile the sand back for her rear flippers to fill
Now we were walking even slower to the bus. Great excitement as we spotted a nest of hatchlings. Kester was now rushing between the ladies and the babies, we were therefore allowed to use a red light to guide them down the beach and watched in hope as the little ones faced the waves. We didn't want to think odds at this time. We got back to Beez Neez at 01:30, too excited to sleep, I got straight on line to research these amazing creatures.
Becks and Kester .
We had to wait a while
We had to wait a while while our lady got settled in to her dig, then we could approach. We were only allowed to use red light torches so as not to put off any other ladies that might journey up the beach and to not confuse any babies en route to the sea, should we be lucky enough for any hatchlings to chose tonight to begin their epic struggle for life.
while our lady got settled in to her dig, then we could approach. We were only allowed to use red light torches so as not to put off any other ladies that might journey up the beach and to not confuse any babies en route to the sea, should we be lucky enough for any hatchlings to chose tonight to begin their epic struggle for life.