03/26/2008, Georgetown, Great Exuma Island, Bahamas
Marghi was the one who dubbed this place Neverland. I however named it Hotel California and we had decided that it was definitely somewhere in between or rather a combination of the two. I call it Hotel California because you can check out anytime you want but you can never leave. W/ that in mind or despite that, we are planning on leaving here on Friday, weather permitting, although Tim is only doing it under duress. We got our mail last week, Fedex overnight only took about 9 days to get here but it took Tim a couple of days to figure out what he needed to do w/ it. Then the next cold front came through and we have great protection here so we had to wait that out. When a cold front comes in, winds clock around into the north quadrant usually accompanied by high winds and sometimes gusts and occasionally squalls. Temps don't really drop, its just the speed and direction of the wind and in the Bahamas, there aren't that many places that have good protection from northern winds so sometimes you have to stick around places that do have it.
We went into town today to provision for our departure and stop at immigration. Tomorrow we'll go back and finish provisioning and grovel at immigration. We have to finish provisioning because both grocery stores were out of eggs, Mom's bakery was out of bread, hopefully the next boat will bring more produce and we need to stock up on alcohol because there was no room for any on the dinghy ride today. We have to grovel at immigration because while our cruising permit they gave us in Bimini is good until something like August, our immigration expires in 3 months meaning April 13th and today they told Tim that he had to come back 1 week before and there are no other immigration offices in the whole Exuma chain except in Georgetown so we would have to hightail it north and be in Nassau by April 13 (although today she said we could be a week late) which would suck because we were hoping to leisurely enjoy some of the Exuma islands that we missed on the way down.
Don't get me wrong, this place is fine but it is still a crowded although large anchorage and we are anchored right by a very pretty beach w/ a trail that goes over to the sound/ocean beach, there is continuous chatter on the radio as everybody yacks all day, lots of activities, grocery stores and amenities but I'm looking forward to a little bit of solitude and some more peaceful and serene anchorages and the various nazis get a little tiresome after a while. There are radio nazis and volleyball nazis and anchor light nazis and so on. Also, every time a coldfront comes in, everybody likes to anchor real close to us must be our turkey charisma.
Tim is content here because there's a nice beach to take Giz to and life here is easy for him and Gizmo is just plain comatose between the long walks on the beach, us being around and all of the dinghies buzzing by us that he gets to bark at. Anyway, after Friday, our contact will be erratic again as we start (hopefully slowly) making our way back up north.
03/19/2008, Georgetown, Great Exuma, Bahamas
Now, this is a dinghy raftup!!! Last Thursday night they had a dinghy raftup centered around a catamaran called Freebird. Freebird was the stage for a classic rock concert by a group of fellow cruisers calling themselves "White Folks on Boats". Freebird hung a few ropes off the front of their boat which the initial dinghies used to tie themselves to and then everybody else just tied to the other dinghies so before you know it, there are ~50-100 dinghies attached, passing hors d'oevres arround, having cocktails and listening to some really good classic rock. What a great night, followed by a potluck happy hour on the beach.
I unfortunately forgot my camera that night so it took me a while to get some pix off of somebody and will try to post more of the raftup. We are waiting on the arrival of mail from the US. Which was sent Fedex beginning of last week and is supposed to be on Great Exuma island according to the Fedex tracking number but has not made an appearance yet. Hopefully that will arrive either today or tomorrow although really only time will tell because its not the most efficient system down here.
03/08/2008, Volleyball Beach, Georgetown, Bahamas
Regatta started today, Saturday, with the coconut dingy race in the morning. We watched. Gizmo, however, did grab his fair share of coconuts (not enough to win). Later in the day, Gizmo was conned into entering the Pet Parade. Black Spot the Pirate takes on those prissy little wenches and scalleywags in an enjoyable costume affair. strutting to the music of CCR's Badmoon Rising, Blackspot made his rounds.
Later, the Regatta 'Opening Night' started with a masqurade mask competition followed by some skits, jokes & dancing under the stars. I tried to get Dave to enter the mask competition since he put the most time (between Margi,Michele,Dave & I) into creating his, but he wouldn't go for it.
Dave and Margi entered their boat into the Around Stocking Island Race (this Monday) with Michele, Black Spot and myself as crew. Looking forward to that, then it's about time to blow this joint. I can't believe it's almost time to start inching our way back north.
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