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Back in the USA
Sunny and hot....93F
04/07/2009, Stuart, Florida

It's been a rather busy past five days, with the need to sail south to Black Sound, haul the boat out of the water, clean all of the exterior and interior, and prepare everything onboard for our long absence.

The danger of hurricanes results in the need to really strip the boat of everything one can, so Louise and I spent four days removing things and emptying food and all other perishables from the boat.

We then took a water taxi across to Grand Abacos Island and from there a plane to FT. Lauderdale where we've rented a car to travel north to Stuart where we have left our Mini Cooper (which has refused to start).

Imagine a car which does not let you open the electric trunk lid when the battery is dead. The battery is located in the trunk.

A lovely meal in the harbour, things to sort out tomorrow, and then the slow drive north.

It's quite a culture shock arriving in busy Florida after such a long time on the quiet beaches of the Abacos!


04/07/2009 | Judy and Jim
Looking forward to seeing you soon! Safe trip home to Echo!
04/08/2009 | Keith
We look forward to seeing you back in Ottawa and hearing of your saga first hand. Will be at a pre-easter lunch at Maxwells tomorrow with DB and DC. .... Keith
A couple of windy days
wind soft from the north!
03/30/2009, manjack

Never a dull moment!

With the wind swinging to the south, we decided to relocate to the other side of the bay in order to avoid the 3' swells that made the boat rock and roll.

We spent a couple of days hiding behind Crab Cay, and enjoyed a wet dinghy ride into shore!

Crab Cay is uninhabited (in terms of humans) but has a resident wild boar population which we can see scavenging on the beach. Given my inability to catch a lobster, I have decided to forgo the pleasure of hunting wild boar with my sling spear!

The wind and rain arrived from the north this morning so we decided to return to Manjack Cay (c/w internet) and relax for the last 4-5 days of our winter holiday.

It was when we started to lift the anchor that the machine used to raise the 50lbs anchor and 200lbs of chain (the windlass) decided to stop working.

Heavy chain and an anchor encased in mud is hard work lifting while Louise had her first chance at the helm.

Things got sorted out (finally) and we're relaxed in the sunshine!

I read in the Ottawa Citizen that spring has arrived in Ottawa with most of the snow now gone.

Enjoy the maple syrup.... it's supposed to be a good year!


The last couple of days!
windy and bright! 20C
03/26/2009, Green Turtle Cay

We lifted anchor and sailed south for an hour to reach New Plymouth which is the closest place to purchase food, etc.

Although only 350 people live on the entire Green Turtle Cay, it felt very cosmopolitan compared with Manjack.

Other people, shops, roads, vehicles, rum!

There is even a customs house where we tried to extend our tourist visas........they kept our old ones, will send them to Treasure Cay International Airport, and return them (we hope) next Thursday.... so it goes.....

A beautiful sail back with the wind on our stern, we were able to sail right into the anchorage under a reefed mainsail.

Back to the sound of the waves, the gentle rocking of the boat, and all the ingredients for a first-class pizza for dinner c/w cold wine! Very civilized!

With the help of the internet, and some friends, I've started exploring options for our drive ride north in ten days time from Florida to Ottawa.

Others have suggested a stop in Washington DC to participate in the annual cherry blossom festival held from March 30 - April 12. We hope to make it for the final weekend and enjoy the festivities! Should be like the Ottawa tulip festival on steroids!

The solar panels did their job and the generator is being ignored..... life is grand!

Today for the first time I showed Louise how to "dive on the anchor" to ensure it has been properly set....

That girl is fantastic! She can do anything!

Enjoy yourselves!


03/27/2009 | Hanny and Andre
We caught up on all your news, and start to be jealous. Yes, it would appeal enormously to us all these deserted beaches and islands, and everything looks so peaceful.
Next winter Andre and I will certainly come and spend some time with you.

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