High and dry!
12/08/2009, Staniel Cay, Exumas
November 30th, 2009 Big Majors Spot, Exumas
After coffee I went followed Steve and Kim to the airport to see her off. The place was hopping with four or five charters arriving as well as a few private planes. Kim's flight was overbooked by one so there was a little drama on the tarmac. But one of the charters was heading back to Nassau empty, so some cash changed hands between the pilot and the Flamingo air representative and things were cool.
I dropped off an empty propane tank at Isles General and picked up a dozen eggs and a cabbage.
Last week a 25 foot boat with two large outboards crashed into one of the small rock islands that are just outside Staniel Cay Yacht Club. It is still sitting on top of the rock so on my way by I swung over for a closer inspection. It was a center console type fishing boat and must have hit going about 30mph. The island is all needle rock and that is where the injuries must have come from. Getting launched into needle rock should have killed the three aboard, but instead they were airlifted to Nassau and then on to Ft. Lauderdale.
Back on board "Sapphire" Kathy spent most of the day working on stainless. While I cleaned the soot off the stern...The exhaust leaves a film that is hard to remove. Getting it off usually means rewaxing which is how I spent the afternoon.
Steve came over after lunch with an inverter/Link problem and I returned to help him out. We found a bad connection in a fuse and assumed that it was the problem. By evening though when he returned, it seems that the original problem is still present even after changing out the Link system, which runs the Inverter/Charger. We came up with a couple of things to try tomorrow morning and made plans to go into the Yacht Club for lunch.
For dinner Kathy made Cole slaw and we thawed a package scallops, which were sautéed in garlic butter and dark Rum.
12/07/2009, Staniel Cay, Exumas
November 29th, 2009 Black Point to Staniel Cay, Exumas
After coffee and breakfast we hauled up the anchor and headed out the south entrance to Black Point. Once we made the corner we rolled out the jib and put engine in neutral to charge the battery system and make some water.
"Fine Lion" exited from the north entrance and hoisted both of his sails. Since the race was on we rolled out the staysail and were flying along at about 3.5 knots.
We had a great , slow sail up to Staniel. "Sapphire" did lose the race but in all fairness we did slow down intentionally to keep air bubbles out of the watermaker.
Once at anchor we had some lunch and then took the dinghy to shore to pick palm fronds. Steve and Kim joined us and we dinghied out to Sandy Cay for the afternoon and then returned to middle beach (next to Pig Beach) for a send off bottle of wine. Kim flies out tomorrow for 3 weeks back in the States.
On the way back to the boat we remembered that we had forgotten to give Kim a check for some things that she is picking up for us so we invited ourselves over to "Fine Lion" for three games of Rummy Cube before dinner.
Finally back on board, I made some goulash for dinner...and lunch tomorrow, before watching some video and going to bed.
Thanksgiving at Black Point All-age school
12/07/2009, Black Point
November 28th, 2009 Black Point, Exumas
Yes, that's Lorraine's Mom dancing!
The other day a boat approached us while at anchor here with a native couple aboard. They motored up, hailed us, introduced themselves and invited us to her birthday party to be held at Scorpio's on Saturday night. We thanked her and said that we would be there. So the party became our only task for today.
The north winds had calmed somewhat overnight and shifted a little more to the east so we decided to move back over to the south side of the anchorage a mile away to make our trips to shore a little easier.
First though, we made a trip to shore. In front of us there were three or four old cement block homes that were in various stages of decomposition so we decided to explore. We beached the dinghy and wandered around the first one picking a few palm fronds for Kathy to renew her weaving. We motored past a couple more buildings and stopped at a beach where there was a tiny boarded up shack with a chair outside and a couple of dysfunctional boats up in the scrub.
We anchored out a few feet from shore and waded in. As we approached the shore we heard a groan and one of the boarded up shutters, hinged on the top, opened slowly. Unwittingly we were standing in someone's living room. So we turned around, got in the dinghy and drove away. As we were departing, I looked back to see that the panel that had opened ... was again closed. Creepy.
Back at the boat we weighed anchor and motored back to our original anchorage in front of the Laundry. It was a mostly sunny day and I spent most of the morning making water from the solar panels and monitoring the amps in and out. The new Blue Sky controller seems to be living up to its billing generating about 15 to 20% more amps to the battery bank and the watermaker seems to working as advertized as well. It will be awhile before we get things down to a science but for now we are happy with the improvements.
Just before noon "Nice and Easy" pulled in and anchored off our stern. Bill and Sue spend their winters in Georgetown and were on their way to secure their spot early. Bill is the resident Bridge instructor on the beach there and we've played quit often together over the last two seasons.
We needed to go ashore to make an order and ended up at Lorraine's for lunch with Kim and Steve and had a nice time as always. As we were leaving, Loraine invited us, as her guests, to a Thanksgiving dinner that evening at the school. Although we didn't know what we were getting into... we accepted the invitation and promised to return at 5:30.
The remainder of the afternoon was spent reading in the cockpit and as 5:30 approached we heated some water and took showers. We reached Loraine's Café at the prescribed hour but there was no sign of Loraine. Her daughter was there minding the store and had a couple of friends at the bar. We each had a beer and sat down. A little later we were joined by Doug and Jean who have a house on the beach on the other side of the Point where we anchored a few times last year to get out of the north wind. They live here six months a year and have recently arrived from California for the winter and were in town to attend the dinner at the school as well.
We sat around talking to them for an hour when finally Loraine arrived. As it turned out, she was too busy to take us to the dinner but she handed us off to her mother who was all dressed up for the occasion. We all know and like her mother, so it was no problem to us.
The school is only a couple of doors down the street from the Café so our walk was short. As we approach the entrance, noise from the school spilled out into the parking lot. Someone had a microphone and there seemed to be at least three people talking at once.
At the door Mom stuck her head through and we were promptly seated at one of two long tables near the front of the room there were two more tables at the rear with mostly children. We were sitting at the dignitary table.
As we were seated, Mom excused herself and joined the ladies standing ... and talking at the front of the room. One of the students cued up some music on his laptop and mom and the other older ladies started dancing to a din of applause and cheers. They were great. When they finished and were seated, a group of middle school girls walked up the front to show everyone how kids today danced. More music blared and they put on another show.
After that...an older lady took the mic and tried to get people to quiet down without much success so we went on with her speech anyway... attempting to shout the crowd down. As near as I can tell she was talking about how things had changed over time on the island but that they still had lots of things to be thankful for. The crowd never really did quiet down until the food was served.
We had our choice of turkey or ham, which was served with peas and rice, mac and cheese, slaw and either beets or corn. There was tons of food and we could see Loraine in the next room partially hidden behind a large portable balckboard... slicing turkey.
The waiters came around serving soft drinks. They would come out with a mixed case of cans and the folks at the front of the table got their choice, as they moved down each table the rest of us we served what was left. Really, I am not going to drink grape soda.
When the dinner was over, we crossed the street to attend the birthday party. It was quite nice and everything was free. When they started serving yet ANOTHER ham and turkey dinner, we decided to head back to the boat. All in all, a nie day at Black Point.