21 July 2021
Christmas Day was great in Bequia. Cheryl and Lafayette from the Fig tree restaurant closed for the day and allowed us cruisers to hold a pot luck bbq there. It was a lot of fun with so many friends.
December 27. Bequia. Donna, Kev, Angela , Gary and I caught the ferry across to Kingstown, St. Vincent’s capital. EC$ 25 one way and took an hour. What a vibrant town! Busy, people laughing and had a great feel about it. Some of the best hardware and grocery stores in the Caribbean. We walked around, seeing some beautiful old buildings and then caught a local bus out to Blue Lagoon Marina. Very nice out there. Had a snack and a few beers. Bus back to town, shopped and then caught the ferry back to Bequia. A great day out. I’ve bought some lamb loin chops, which are rare as hens teeth out her, to bbq on New Year’s Eve.
Greg and Jenny, on Nebula, upped anchor and sailed north to St. Vincent. They are meeting friends up in Antigua late in January but don’t want to get caught south of there if the winds pick up. Sad to see them go but we will hopefully meet up in Martinique in a month or two.
New Year’s Eve. A crowd of us got together on the beach, just opposite my boat, for a late afternoon bbq. Gary and Ang on Mystic Blue, Richard and Rowena on Galene, JK and Nelia on Windkat, John and Wendy from SA and a few others were there. It was loads of fun swimming and the lamb chops were like butter. Delicious!
That evening I noticed that my inflatable, read deflatable, dinghy was getting very soft. Upon inspection the following day, Gary and I found that the seams on the nose had started to give way. This is 2 years after I’d bought the little beast. Warranty here in the Caribbean? One year. So I went to the chandlery in town and bought a tube of 3M 5200 adhesive. We took the dinghy to the beach and deconstructed it as best we could. Then slathered it with the glue and taped it up. 24 hrs later I pumped a bit of air in and it held shape! A week later and it’s good. But I think the saga will continue.
Otherwise just been chillin’ in the Caribbean Mon. Loving life, swimming a lot. Yes it is winter time out here. The temperature hardly changes. Only the humidity.
Sailing at 0 knots.
Life at the speed of zero.
That was mid January 2020. Skip ahead to late April 2020 and the world has changed. I’m currently in St. Anne, Martinique and there is lock down here aboard too. We can go ashore for essential services and exercise for one hour. We have to have a self issued permit with us while ashore. All good though. The Martinique authorities seem to be on top of the situation here. The grocery stores are well stocked and social distancing is happening.
My friend Murray Hoffman, made a detour on his trip back from South Africa to Canada to visit his son, to visit me here in the Caribbean. He flew into Martinique as the world was about to start shutting down. He was due to spend 2 weeks out here, sailing the islands, but I couldn’t leave the anchorage. A week in and it was decided that the prudent move would be for him to try and fly back to Australia, via Miami and LA. After a couple of attempts at the airport here he managed to board a flight out. Good decision Murray! You might still have been here.
We are allowed to sail away but none of the islands want us arriving or won’t let us in. So best to stay put I think.
Life aboard is always a little slower. Life aboard during a pandemic is at a snail’s pace.
Skip ahead to early July 2020. The world has gone even more nuts. Lost it’s shit. World leaders are are showing their total incompetence in dealing with this pandemic. There are exceptions of course. I hope think that this might be the first time that most of the world is looking at the USA with pity. How sad is this and how the mighty have fallen. Not to mention the Victorian Govt in Aus. The government’s handling of covid 19 and now the BLM protests, riots whatever. I wonder how many people realize that there were a lot more black slave owners than white ones? And there still are. Africa is still a very harsh continent and the world turns a blind eye.
So.. reality of the situation. Hurricane season has arrived!
I’m not positioned where I want to be. I’m about 200 nm north, in the hurricane box. I can sail south to St. Vincent and the grenadines but is not a good place to be when a storm comes bowling through. I’m waiting for Grenada to open up. Currently they are open with a 14 day quarantine period. I’m hoping that Carriacou, part of Grenada will open too. Then I might set sail. Mean time, here is good. I’m surrounded by good people, facilities etc. and I can duck into the mangrove area a mile away from where I’m anchored.
I’m anchored next to a friend of mine, John, on Out of Africa. We have lots of swims together and go shopping on Wednesday’s. So all good. Sadly John picked up a fish pot line with his prop and messed the drive train up. So he can only sail, in and out of bays too. Not too easy. I’ll hang around and give him a hand.
And.. a good friend of mine, who’ve I’ve been sailing with for a year or so , Greg, who I’ve known since 1980, and his lovely lady, Jenny are part of this chapter. Jen had to fly back to the U.K. to assist her Mum and wasn’t going to make it back. The world shut down and Greg was aboard Nebula in Antigua. He set sail for the Azores a few months ago. Made it. Then continued to the U.K. single handed! I’m very proud of my friend. And he has total command of the Cobb bbq too. He should be their rep.