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The First Mate's Journal
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Great Lakes to The Bahamas
Who: Wayne & Pat
Port: Jackson
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Happy Birthday Steph - my Easter Baby :)
Sunny, 75, winds SW 5-10
04/08/2009, Exuma Park, Warderick Wells

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Happy Birthday Erma - wish we could have our annual lunch and get-together date for our birthdays . I hope you have a nice one and the boys take you out or make a nice dinner for you. Enjoy the day! Enjoy your life! Here's a nice place to sit and sip a nice tropical drink with you and contemplate the view and life and put things into perspective...

It's a much nicer day today than yesterday was. We need to get a chart for Eleuthera. In going through the chart books, it looks like Eleuthera is in the Far Bahamas Book. It makes no sense to me, other than to get you to buy another chart book, but if we're heading there, we need to get it. We'll run over to the office after lunch to see if they have that. The plan is to go to Shroud Cay tomorrow and then to Royal Island off the tip of Eleuthera Island. From there the plan is to work our way up the Abacos and then jump across to Ft. Pierce in Florida. This all hinges on weather of course. As the saying goes - cruiser's plans are written in jello...

Spring Fronts bring strong winds
winds 15-25, cloudy and cool - 73*
04/07/2009, Exuma Park, Warderick Wells

Spring Front came roaring through. Winds in the 20's all day and waves have us rocking and rolling. When Judy came on this morning asking who was leaving, not one voice chimed in. Everybody stayed put today, and there were quite a few boats trying to obtain moorings for the day that just weren't available. There were some at the Emerald Rock anchorage but Judy told everyone, upfront, that with the winds today - it would be quite roily. I listened to quite a few people, on the radio, trying to find secure anchorages from the westerly winds and some trying to pick up moorings in the Emerald Rock area. I feel lucky that we were able to get in here when we did!

Today we're staying on the boat and hoping that the moorings hold. I think that these are probably some of the best in the Bahamas! A definite reading day today as long as we can read with all the motion around us. The boat, at times, feels like we're sitting in the bottom of an oscillating teacup. Think I'll have some tea to go with the motion.

The winds are blustering still and the clouds keep rolling over us. The waves look asymmetrical one moment, then symmetrical the next. As I write this I'm watching the waves crash into some rocks and small islands that surround our sheltered area. There are some impressive waves that bury the land from my sight. The wind generator has been going non-stop all day. At times, it gets so revved up, it sounds like it wants to take off.

Making pizza for dinner tonight...

Spectacular sunset

A day of comparisons
80s mostly sunny
04/06/2009, Exuma Park – Warderick Wells

Monday, April 6, 2009

Another lazy morning that I sat looking out at the beauty of the water and sand. I spent the morning reflecting on this place and where I come from. There's no resemblance between the two, and I wonder what it would be like to grow up in a place such as this as opposed to a place surrounded by factories and 8-5 jobs. It's snowing back home and I'm sure that everyone is bundled up, keeping warm, as they run from building, to car, to building. Here, we are the industry. Tourism is what drives the economy in the Bahamas and in talking with the natives business is down.

Two little bananaquits came by and chirped at me in the cockpit - little winged beggars looking for sugar! As much as I'd love to - I continue to resist feeding them on the boat. They seem to come by every couple of hours and fly on down to the next boat.

We took the dinghy to various places around the island exploring more beaches and sitting in the water - chilling (called liming in the Bahamas). On one beach I found large piles of charred remnants of conch shells that had been hunted and eaten. I was disturbed at this since this is a no hunt, no collect zone. It was obvious that someone had been using this spot for quite a while to hunt, collect, and eat conch around a fire, then perhaps thought they could burn the shells? Very disturbing. I hope these were collected before the park came into existence.

The tidal shelf/sandbar, by the boat, always dries in spots at low tide, so I couldn't resist taking a few pictures of Wayne standing in ankle deep water next to her. It goes from a depth of zero where I'm standing taking pictures, to a few inches where he stands, to a drop off of about 13 ft where Kolibrie is tied to the mooring.

After exploring we came back to the boat and read then I made dinner. It was kind of strange. Even though I had fried potatoes with the eggs this morning, I still had a taste for potatoes, so dinner consisted of sweet and sour pork with... mashed potatoes. Like I said, it was a little strange...

A front is coming through from the northern climes and we did get some wind back this evening. This is good. We're in a secure place, generate power, and get cooled off by a breeze too.

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