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Swingin' on a Star
Ship's log for the circumnavigating Saint Francis 50 catamaran, "Swingin on a Star".
The Current Champ
Randy
03/18/2007, Saba Rock

Mom and Dad found my favorite spot at Saba Rock.

The British Virgin Islands
Hammock Hunt
Randy
03/17/2007, Bitter End

While Hideko and I were saying omedetou gozaimasu to Hiroatsu my Mom and Dad (from the looks of their collection of photos) were surveying the best hammock facilities in North Sound. This one is at the Bitter End Yacht Club.

The British Virgin Islands
04/25/2007 | Pablo
Now that's what I'm all about, HAMMOCKS rule my siesta world! Your mom and dad and have the right idea. Great photo.
04/25/2007 | Pablo
Now that's what I'm all about, HAMMOCKS rule my siesta world! Your mom and dad and have the right idea. Great photo.
Stern To
Randy
03/16/2007, Leverick Bay

This is what happened to an unfortunate Boston Whaler parked stern to the seas during those few days at Leverick.

The British Virgin Islands
Building Chop
Randy
03/15/2007, Virgin Gorda

The west side of this dock is the calmer side as the wind tends to come (always comes?) from the east and the seas tend to come (always come?) from the north. The area is pretty sheltered but there's a fair amount of fetch across the sound.

I was happy we were reserved on the west side. Right until we docked. I pulled in bow first but we had to flip the boat around before we left to set up the boarding ramp. Without the ramp my parents weren't going to be able to get Roq on and off the boat and might risk a swim on their own as well.

Stern to the boat was facing the wrong way and as you can see from the photo, the seas got up as soon as we left. When the waves start running the transom slaps and makes a fairly annoying sound with each slap. Unless you have a Hans Christian your boat is going to be much happier facing the wind and seas.

Sorry Mom and Dad...

The British Virgin Islands
Mom and Dad, a boat and a dog
Randy
03/14/2007, Leverick Bay

Kay and Randy senior made the best of their time aboard. They explored the mountainous roads of Virgin Gorda and took this shot which provides a panoramic view of North Sound Virgin Gorda with Leverick Bay in the foreground.

The British Virgin Islands
Leaving the Boat for the first time
Randy
03/13/2007, Leverick Bay

We have been living aboard Swingin' on a Star for almost six months. We have done day trips and I have even had to fly to California for a week, but Hideko or I have always been aboard to look after her.

Hideko's brother Hiroatsu was getting married and neither of us were about to miss the occasion. Unfortunately it was just too far for us to sail in time for the wedding. My parents generously offered to watch the boat and Roq while we were gone.

Fred and Cindy have lived aboard Kelp Fiction I and II for years so I felt extra comforted knowing that if either my Mom or Dad had any problems they could call on Fred and Cindy for help.

We spent a crazy morning putting the finishing touches on the boat set up for my parents and then packed in a mad frenzy. The North Sound shuttle picked us up at the end of the dock and off we went on a 7 day excursion to the other side of the planet.

The British Virgin Islands
Leverick Bay
Randy
03/12/2007, Virgin Gorda

We slept until the sun came up today! Wow, what a concept. I was getting used to beautiful sunrises.

After some great omelets a la Hideko, we got set to dinghy ashore to clear in. I had launched Little Star earlier in the morning. When we went out to get going I realized that the dinghy was now a swimming pool. I promptly jumped in and inserted the drain plug. We stow the dinghy upright on the after deck and always remove the plug to drain things if it rains. I almost always reinsert it before lowering the boat into the water. Almost being the operative word. I was bailing for a while.

The clear in process was very easy and only cost 20 or 30 buck. The BVI uses US currency so commerce is pretty straight forward for us yanks.

We had reservations at Leverick Bay Marina, which is a nice place in North Sound Virgin Gorda, just the other side of Tortolla. I had talked to my parents last night to tell them to get a hotel for the first night and that we would meet them at Leverick tonight.

We wanted to sail around Tortolla and up into North Sound. Hideko was set on catching some fish so we planned a route across the Kingfish Banks. It was a great sail and sure enough, as soon as we hit the banks Hideko pulled in a big Mackerel. I caught and returned a Barracuda as usual.

While we were playing around the wind backed to 30 degrees. Of course that was our heading. We fired up the Yanmars and motored the rest of the way into North Sound.

We docked the boat at 6PM and took a big exhale. We were home, for a while. Of course we had a flight to Japan booked for the next day so that we could attend Hideko's brother's wedding but at least Roq and Swingin' on a Star would be comfortable for the next week or two.

Once tied up we immediately located my Dad at the bar. It was great to see my parents in the tropics again. We also located Cindy, our friend from the Lauderdale Marine Center. Fred was out on the dive boat but their Amel was happily anchored in the harbor.

After quickly catching up Hideko and I set about ensuring the boat was secure for our week away. It was strange to be on the dock, but we slept just fine.

The British Virgin Islands

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