22 August 2007 | Martin's Marina
We received our mail today. Saint Brendan's Isle is fantastic, no junk mail, all packaging broken down to make bulk shipping more efficient, and flawless service. Our mail arrived in Saint Georges in only two days. It took another two days to actually get it. I used an agent this time which cost about $50 US (in addition to the $50 US I had to pay Grenada). Not bad considering the amount of stuff we received.
We pretty much buy everything on line so there can be a lot of mail. We rarely get any useful service from stores or dealers because we leave the neighborhood shortly after we arrive in almost all cases. If an outfit knows you can't walk into the store they will often ignore you when you email or call for help. For instance, we have some badly rusted links in the new anchor chain we bought from Ropes Inc. in Fort Lauderdale. I emailed Jack, the principal as I understand it, and he asked me to bring it in. I told him that I was in Grenada and heading through the canal. After that, no more responses. This type of thing is fairly common and even if someone wants to help it may be impossible for you to arrange to get the thing that needs service to them or vice versa. For this reason we have decided that we are much better off buying things at the cheapest possible price from online sources. Online outlets tend to provide no service, but seeing as how we rarely get useful service anyway, we might as well save on the purchase.
One of the items we received in our 2 foot cube of mail was the Raymarine Smart Controller, purchased at Defender.com. It is basically a little sea talk RF remote. The transceiver plugs into a sea talk port on your main system and the remote plugs into a charger. Once charged you can walk anywhere on the boat and use the remote to control the autopilot but you can also set custom alarms, check wind speed and direction, view the GPS position, and just about anything else. I am particularly happy to have this access at the nav station and in our cabin. I have Raytech v6 on the nav computer but sometimes it is a bit much to fire up the entire computer for a simple navigational task. Now I can just glance at the remote. We also have no instruments in our cabin. With the remote I can be snug in bed and still have the remote right next to me with various anchor alarms and what not enabled.