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The Bahamas are different
Winds from the north (Canada)
12/19/2009, New Plymouth, GTC

With the water tanks completely full (to overflowing) we relaxed and watched a movie last night while the wind & rain howled outside from the north. It is interesting to realize that a 3/8" small, rusty chain is all that separates our 30,000 lb boat from the rocky shore, and/or the other boats in the harbour.

Dawn arrives with the wind still blowing, but a beautiful blue sky with lovely sunshine..... the temperature is 70F.

With four marinas on Green Turtle Cay, it happens that everyone is completely out of gas. You can easily buy diesel fuel, but no-one has any gas (for the dinghy). The locals blame the dramatic rise in automobiles on the island (this is an island 7km long by .5 km wide) who routinely fill up at the marinas.

We are very fortunate that one of our neighbours (and new friend) is commuting to Treasure Cay for work ( a 30 minute boat ride) and graciously picks up 2 gallons of "petrol" (they are from South Africa) to solve the "no gas" problem on GTC. An evening stroll to the Sundowner Bar and Grill reveals that the NOGAS problem should be solved within the next two-three weeks maybe..... so it goes.... we are now on Bahamas time!

The photo I attach was taken by Louise and shows the incredible clarity of the water.... if you look carefully you can see the shadow of the fish on the sand bottom.....

The small town of New Plymouth (pop. 200) is covered with Christmas lights and it is quite magical to walk through the narrow streets with the 200 year old buildings, a spectacular star filled sky above, and to appreciate this very special time of the year.

Merry Christmas to everyone!


12/21/2009 | Beth and Jim
Oh, I remember New Plymouth from Christmas 2 years ago! It was just wonderful. Will you be there for the Junkanoo on New years day? Another fantastic experience.

Merry Christmas from Madcap to You!!
ps - Merry Christmas to our mutual friends who follow both blogs too :-)
Thunder and lightening!
70F and lots of wind and rain!
12/18/2009, New Plymouth, GTC

Wonderful time!

From our mooring, we can dinghy to the public dock where we have chained our two bicycles to a nearby tree, and cycle into he beautiful village of New Plymouth to explore new places and re-stock the pantry.

We have visited old friends, met new sailors from Nova Scotia, and cycled the entire island on our wonderful bicycles...

Today we cycled north to have a wonderful lunch at The Green Turtle Club, and relaxed as the rain poured down. Cycling in the rain is a liberating experience! After three weeks of washing in salt water, it was refreshing to be completely soaked in wonderful. clean rainwater.

Yet another project begins....

With the winds at 30 mph + and the rain pounding down onto the deck of our lovely sailboat, we open two of the three water tank inlets, and create some simple dams to stop the water and create puddles, so we can dam the water and have it flow into the tanks...........

Success! With the quantity of rain, both Louise and I (in bathingsuits) are playing in the puddles, splashing, laughing, collecting.... it's like springtime in Ottawa when you want to get rid of the ice melt....

By 5pm, all of the fresh water tanks are completely full. Louise is running water, showering, filling sinks... even I has to have a shower!

She is frustrated that all this wonderful clean fresh water is simply running off the boat into the salty ocean.... such is life!

With the lightning flashing and the thunder booming, i hope the mooring ball we are attached to survives the gale force winds expected this evening...

never a dull moment!


Hiding from Mother Nature!
raining and blowing hard!
12/17/2009, Black Sound on GTC

Another couple of interesting days....

The addition of proper instruments (oil pressure, water temperature) is proceeding slowly and if anyone can find me a two foot high Yanmar diesel mechanic with 6' arms and tiny hands, I will gladly pay his airfare to the Bahamas!

We spent a couple of lovely days enjoying the bright sunshine at Manjack, exploring the ocean beaches, and visiting friends, and recharging our batteries from the solar panels. We even found some wonderful tree trunks on the northern beach which will form the beginnings of some lovely totem poles to decorate the beach/property of Bill and Leslie.

With six bags of garbage, three bags of laundry, no wine, no rum, no vegetables, no cheese, no food, and no gas for the dinghy we raised our anchor and motored south for 45 minutes to GTC to catch the high tide which allows us to enter Black Sound, where we have found a mooring to ride out the incoming northern front.

It's 9am, the rain is beating down, and the wind is blowing.... it's important to know when to hide from mother nature!

Two loads of laundry have been done, the pantry partially restocked, friends invited for dinner, new friends met, garbage off loaded, and we are collecting rainwater in our starboard water tank while I update the blog.

It is expected to blow hard for the next couple of days (gale force) so we'll relax on the mooring, I'll finish the instrument installation (hopefully) and we've arranged to rent a car and drive down to Marsh Harbour to retrieve our daughter (anne-marie) next Tuesday. We'll also take advantage of the opportunity to drive down to the southern tip of the island and also refill our propane tanks, buy more food, and explore some of the "blue holes" that are about...

Lots of fun!


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