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It's always a race - right?
02/08/2010, between Tobago Cay and Bequia

He was about a 1 1/2 miles ahead of me when we left. It took most of 3 hours to catch up and pass him. We took pictures of each other. We met up in St Vincent and traded pics. A young french family. They have been out cruising for over 3 years now. The youngest daughter, who is 3, has never lived any place but the boat. Runs around like the whole thing is a playground.
They sail on an Amiel 40.
He enjoyed the race too.

Of Bats and Bananas
02/06/2010, Young Island, St Vincent

Since I have been down here, I have not needed to put the companionway screen in. The wind rarely goes below 10 knots at night, most times much higher. So I figure the wind is too high for the bugs to be out flying. So far the strategy has worked (FOR BUGS!)
Last night we were anchored in Salt Whistle Bay. The last time we were in there, it was very crowded and could only anchor far from the beach where it was very rolly. We could not wait to get the heck out of there. Yesterday when we pulled in we were able to pull right up to the beach in 8 ft of water.
All was well, Beckie went snorkeling, I scrubbed barnicles from the bottom of the keel. We had a nice Lobster Bar-b-que on the beach.
In the middle of the night, Beckie awoke and discovered that there were BATS..... alot of them.... flying in and out of the boat.
Surprisingly enough she did not freak, I guess it must be the farm upbringing...
Turning on the lights we discovered 6-8 bats flying around trying to get out... I dont think they like lights. The inside of the boat was littered with bat sh*t. Floors, walls, cushions, her suitcase.... all over. It took about 45 minutes to clean it all up.
Apparently they were fruit bats as we discovered all of the bananas that we had were half eaten. Actually they were not eaten as much as the fruit was sucked out of the skins.
So the question I have is, Did the bats come aboard because I had ripe bananas or was I too close to the beach?

02/07/2010 | mom
you wanted excitment, you sure got it
Boat Chores with a prize
02/03/2010, Tobago Cays

Alan has asked me a number of times to write a blog but up until today I didn't feel that I had anything to add to his experiences. Well, let me tell you, things can change pretty fast around here. For the better you ask! That would depend on your point of view. The day started out as everyday does - up with the sun - Alan brews a fresh pot of coffee and for the next couple of hours we sit in the cockpit and watch the sun come up over the crashing waves, well, sort of, if it wasn't for those damn palm trees getting in the way. Just a small annoyance. Then we decide where we want to go and what island to sail to. I know - it's such a hard decision. Yesterday, we left Bequia (beck-way) and headed back to Tobago Cays - about a 4 ½ hour sail, 6-8 ft seas and 20 knots of wind - between islands you are lucky enough to get the full effect of the Atlantic Ocean. No problem until Alan decides it is time for one of his daily naps. His instructions are to keep watch. I ask myself - watch what? Half the time the waves are so big you can't see the islands much less another sailboat but, since I am no longer a newbe, hey, no problem! Honestly, it is quite a thrill speeding along at 7.5 knots. We get anchored and settle in for the night. Cocktails are still at 5-watch the sunset and eat dinner-shower and read until about 8 and then I am usually fast asleep. It's such a tiring day.
So today proved that every day is not another day in paradise. LAUNDRY ON UNABATED! Women kiss your washing machine. This is how is goes - first, you get 2 - 2 gallon buckets and I'm not kidding either. Then you put about a teaspoon of laundry soap in one because if you but anymore then that you'll never be able to rinse it out in the other 2 gallon bucket. Geez, all I wanted was clean sheets. 90 minutes later I had washed 1 set of sheets and 4 pillow cases and a couple of t-shirts and a bathing suit. I will never complain about my washer and dryer again! Alan had relayed his experience washing a mattress pad cover - he likened it to wrestling with an alligator and I thought he was just complaining. I owe him an apology. No wonder everyone has that boat smell - no one wants to be subjected to Laundry Day! Alan says you have to keep up with it. I think that is the reason you see so many people with so little clothes on and I think I would be joining them if it meant getting out of doing the laundry.
After all of that I was generously rewarded when I saw a Spotted Eagle Ray while snorkeling. I had seen some small rays but I have to tell you that it was about 6 ft across and had about a 5 ft tail. It was the most beautiful, graceful and awe inspiring thing I have ever seen in my life. It glided over the bottom of the sea so effortlessly, it was mesmerizing and something that I will never forget. Yes, I am a long way from the farm! Thanks Alan for an experience of a lifetime and one that I will not soon forget!

02/03/2010 | David V
I like y'style, Beckie... always look on the bright side of life.... some, including Mandy TRICKETT can't.... DV
02/04/2010 | Alexa
I guess this explains why Dad is hardly ever wears shirts anymore:)
02/04/2010 | alan
It was the underwear i gave up ... not the shirts...
I know... TMI
02/08/2010 | kbeachner
Now I know what to tell the guys to pack or not to pack.

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