20 May 2016
We leave for Saint Pierre early in the morning was a lovely day, we turn on our new auto and the alarm goes off, no rudder detected. Here we go again, damn it, so after some foul language we are back to hand steering again. We stayed a few days, not much to see as we had been here before, so off we go to Dominica where we Q flagged it overnight and left the next day with Amelia 1, for Antigua we didn't get to visit this island on our journey south so we were very excited to explore someplace new. We arrived around 2 pm after a 35 knot squall that left us soaked to the bone but the boat got a nice fresh water wash. The next day we contacted the Ray marine tech guy and he came to the boat to see what was wrong with the new ACU, low and behold, they had sent us another dud. So it looked like we were going to be here for a while as they had to ship it back to the states again and get a new one.
With lots of time on our hands we started to explore Antiqua, rented a car, lots of hiking and a ton of white sandy beaches to explore. We were very happy to learn that the Mega yachts were having a regatta that weekend, what a lovely surprise we got to admire these beautiful sailing vessels which were at least 100 ft. in length. We also learned that it was the Talisker Whiskey Atlantic Challenge, 26 boats rowboats left the Canary Islands on Dec 20th and were headed 3000 miles to Antiqua. With great delight we got to witness at least 10 of those boats arrive at Nelsons Dockyard; I was extremely excited as I couldn't wrap my head around why someone would even attempt something so extreme and dangerous. My favorite team to arrive was the Row2Recovery guys, they were four injured military Brits, with only 3 legs between them, and they had all lost a limb or two during their time in Iraq or Afghanistan. We felt like we were witnessing sometime very special, we got to escort them in our dingy and chat along the last few hundred meters, we took take a ton of pictures of their arrival and was there for the tearful reunion with the families that was waiting on our side of the Atlantic. I must say the Cap'n and I did shed a tear or two as well, we realized that they guys had minds of steel after completing such a great adventure. After a couple of weeks of exploring, our new auto showed up the tech came installed it and we were ready to move again.