Flash! Flash! A Star Sighting
10 January 2008 | Rock Sound, Eleuthera, Bahamas.
This morning we heard reports (from a usually reliable source) that Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta (?) Jones were sighted snorkeling at Warderick Wells! Big news around here, I guess, so I'll pass it on. Last night we were alone in Alabaster Bay, the first time ever in the Bahamas that we were alone in an anchorage. And all day yesterday we saw only one sail on he horizon. Then today we passed one catamaran heading the other way. This is definitely not on the beaten path! Yesterday (Wednesday) we took our time getting going. We're slipping easily back into cruising life. We went to bed at 8:30pm and were sound asleep at 6:30am next morning when the alarm went off. And if I hadn't needed to get up to listen to Chris, we would have slept on. But we were underway by 8:30 am, a later start, as we were timing our arrival at Current Cut, a narrow opening through which much of the tidal water for Eleuthera Bight flows. At peak it runs over six knots, meaning that if we were fighting it, we would go nowhere. But we timed it nicely, a not insignificant feat given that there is very limited tidal data available here. And it had the usual (none) Bahamas navigation marks, so that we used what the charts call "VPR" or Visual Pilot Rules, meaning just read the water! This one is particularly tricky as you have to take a 90 degree turn when you least think you should, aiming at some very jagged rocks until you are just about on them, when you veer away into what you hope is clear water. But we were able to follow our track from last spring when we came up north on this route heading home. So, safely through, we headed down Eleuthera's western shore. As the day wore on, we found ourselves more close-hauled (tight to the wind) so that we had to tack into our anchorage in Alabaster Bay. But just before sunset, we coasted in and dropped anchor in 10 feet of water, watching the anchor disappear into the sand through the gin-clear (where did that expression come from??) water. For dinner, Stone Crab with Bahamian Cole Slaw and Plantain. Ashore, the apparently abandoned Alabaster Bay Resort looked neatly maintained, but closed up, another sad Bahamian dream gone bad on a beautiful beach in the tropics. This morning (Thursday) we hoisted our main at anchor and sailed out of the anchorage at (again) 8:30 am, heading down the remaining 30 miles to Rock Sound at the southern end of Eleuthera. Starting out we romped down at 7.5-8.0 knots, but after a couple of squalls, the wind clocked and lightened, leaving us close hauled and pulling out reefs. Then back up it came, so the reef went back in. But in the beautiful turquoise waters with the warm breeze pushing us down the coast, it was difficult to complain! By early afternoon we were furling sails at the mouth of Rock Sound and motoring in to the anchorage off the town where we shared the harbor, about the size of Charlottetown Harbour, with 3 other boats. Ashore, we quickly found the bakery for fresh bread and Coconut Tart. A few more stops and the sunset warned us it was time to head back to the boat. And A nice evening with dinner under the stars closed another Bahamas night.