Taking Advantage of Civilization
25 March 2011 | Emerald Bay, Great Exuma
This morning I took advantage of the good Internet connection here (and the FedEx package of our mail that we’d picked up in Georgetown that had the last of our W-2’s in it) and filed our taxes. I sat outside in the shade on the nicely upholstered wicker chairs provided, with my computer plugged in to an outside outlet. The temperature was perfect. It was shady and quiet and about as painless a process as you can get for filing taxes. I managed to get both the Federal and State forms done (we get a refund from both, yeah) and set things up to have the refund direct deposited into our bank account. I really felt like this was a major accomplishment.
Bud and I also used Skype to call home and talk to family. Having a good Internet connection makes things so nice. Too bad that isn’t available in the really beautiful and remote anchorages. We’re looking into on-board systems, but they are very expensive, and the coverage may not be that great anyway. We’ll keep investigating.
After lunch I walked back to the store for a couple of things. I’m trying to find dominoes, but they didn’t have them. The clerk thought they might have them at the hardware store, about a mile and a half down the road. She said it was right on the main road, by the hill and across from the Batelco (Bahamas Telephone Company) tower. The tower would be on my right, the hardware store on my left. I walked what seemed like at least a mile and a half and came to a Batelco tower on a hill, but it was on a side road. Before I walked the quarter mile up the hill towards the tower I asked a young woman waiting for someone in a parking lot. She said there was a hardware store, but it was about another mile on down the road. I debated, but it was hot and I was tired. I decided to go back. I saw there was beach access, so cut through to the beach that fronts the Sandals Resort near the marina. All the beaches in the Bahamas are public, so walking through the beach was no problem. I cut the trip back about in half, and was able to walk barefoot in the cool sand rather than along the dusty shoulder of the road.
Bud, meanwhile, changed out the raw water impeller on the engine. He’d checked it in Charleston, but felt it was time to replace it. We need to get a new one to have as a spare, but we now have two used, but serviceable ones in case of emergency. He also adjusted the stuffing box again. I’ve felt it isn’t dripping enough. It’s proving hard to get it adjusted to our satisfaction. We’d like it to drip once every 10 to 60 seconds when the prop shaft is spinning, and not at all when the shaft is still.
While dinner was cooking (Bud made homemade split pea and ham soup) we walked around the marina. Bud walked back to make sure the soup was OK and I continued around. The marina is huge. I took this shot of the main part in the setting sun on my way back around. I also came across two of the odd tailless birds we first noticed on the golf course here. They let me get quite close, so I got a fairly good shot of one, which is in the gallery. It lacks clarity because it was getting on to dusk when I took it.
Early tomorrow we are leaving for Conception Island. It’s supposed to be pristine. It’s also uninhabited. We have full fuel tanks, full water tanks, the wash is done and we’ve both had several long, hot showers. So it’s back to the wild again. I’ve figured out how to post to the blog via email using our SSB radio, so hopefully there will be blog posts but I won’t be able to add any photos until we have Internet again.