Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Between Fun Folks

Another quick post!

Since arriving with Brad and Kim, Pam hasn't had a chance to do what she does best... cleaning. I'm not standing in her way. So, between B&K and Mike and Charlotte, she's been polishing, waxing, washing, putting things away, ordering me around. It's perfect.

We brought down a part for Mike and Robyn on Mermaid last year and they promised us a rum punch for our troubles. But we weren't able to get together then so they were in debt to us for one significant rum punch. WELL, we've run into them and have had a chance to collect. We had a super island tour with B&K, Mermaid and Blue Jacket and after the tour Mermaid arranged for us to come over for payment. Nice night.

Busy Pam

Big Sail visitors

Show off

Ross Medical School - or at least it was - sign's gone

Red wine alarm has been going off - Pam's dealing with it.

Lunch next year

Osborne, Mermaid and our old friends Southern Cross IV at the Green Bar
Osborne told us about enduring Hurricane Maria. The patio roof went first, then the roof of the house. He and his son prised up some floor boards and moved underneath the house. The land crab that lived there and normally terrorized the kids welcomed them and they spent 5 hours in a truce as the hurricane pounded them.

Pam's kitchen window

Only 16.65 $EC

Now that's a rainbow

Buzzing around like mosquitos trying to save a drifting yacht.
We brought some things for Shania
You might remember Jason, Chanty and Shania from last year. They spent 5 hours of Cat 5 Hurricane underneath the collapsed walls of their house. We met them through our friend Raquel and brought them a few things after the storm. Shania is pretty cute and exactly the same age as our granddaughters Chevy and Lucy so we picked up a few extra things at Christmas.

Fun to meet up with them today to deliver.

Beers with fellow cruisers at Madiba's tonight
Bracing for the Mike and Char storm tomorrow - got lots of fun plans for them. Better get to bed!!!

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Dancing, Diving, Touring and Hiking - Four Days in Dominica

Hello Dear Reader,

Alexis, the PAYS boat guy has just taken Brad and Kim off in his pirogue to taxi to the airport. They will have a short, fun flight to Antigua to overnight in preparation for their flight home to Calgary tomorrow. We have had a terrific time with them. They are VERY easy to cruise with.

Our 20 mile trip down from Les Saintes was great in the beginning. But then we lost all our wind for a few minutes and when it started back in it was 30 degrees off what it had been. That meant motor sailing the last half... which was fine because our batteries enjoyed the boost.

Alexis met us and brought us in to our mooring buoy and we settled in for a celebratory beer. Within minutes Edison from PAYS was alongside to sell us tickets for the Wednesday night PAYS BBQ. So after a quiet afternoon we got all dressed up (NOT) and went in for PAYS Rum Punch (which is lots of Rum and a big punch) and a chicken and fish (except there was no fish) BBQ with all the usual side dishes. Of course the evening ended with crazy dancing in the sand. Kim taught us all to dance like Elaine.

Watching sunsets
During our pre-BBQ beer we met Fabian the dive master who suggested that he could be available for a dive the next day and so...

The next day Brad pushed off at about 9. The rest of us sat on the boat reading and keeping busy. After 3 or 4 hours the dive boat returned. Kim saw Brad standing up and said, "Oh good. He still has both his legs." No shark bite. Turns out, he had a great couple of dives and has the photos to prove it.

AquaMan with his Lion Fish

Poisonous fins removed - great for fish tacos

Bobbin'. With fish nibbling at their toes.
Alexis arranged for an Island tour the next day. Tour driver Winston took us all around the island to see various sites, check out the Maria hurricane damage and have a cool dip under a waterfall. Great day!

Winston with a coconut... or something

Winston's house. He endured Maria inside... in a barrel.

Winston... papaya

Maria damage

Lunch beers with my buddy

What kind of rum do you want? Obama?

Mmmmmmm lunch
Washing our hair

Cute couple by a waterfall
Today we walked up to Fort Shirley and had the grand tour... up to the gun batteries, to the Douglas Battery and the fort itself.

Half way to the top

We could make this work...

Back at the fort
Careful that thing doesn't go off!

Guarding Prince Rupert Bay

Last swim
Brad and Kim have tasted Dominica.  Enough that they may want to come back again?

We hope!!

Les Saintes

After leaving Deshaies we stopped and had a nice swim at Pigeon Island. Brad got some cool footage on his GoPro of the schools of fish along the shoreline. Not sure how to embed that in the blog. I might try later with better internet.

We stayed the night at the foot of Guadeloupe to stage for our 7 mile run over to Les Saintes. It can be a real bitch getting over there and we didn't want to do it later in the day only to find that the mooring balls were all taken.

So we set out in the morning and it wasn't terrible. It wasn't great either but we didn't get soaked - thanks to Janina's new side curtains and we got there early enough to have our pick of the mooring balls. Went ashore to reserve a scooter for the next day so Brad and Kim could explore the island.

Brad's sunset art shot from Basse Terre

Swabbie at the helm

Les Saintes church

View from our anchorage

Another sunset anchorage - at Les Saintes
Next day we launched the scooterists and then did a little provisioning. There have been frequent squalls during the day and so we were wondering how the bike gang was doing. Turned out they had been able to avoid most of the bad stuff and just parked in bars when things got wet.

Picked them up around 3 and checked out to be ready for Dominica the next day.

Brad and Kim took this shot from a place I'd never climb. See the airport on the right?

Swabbie enjoying his Accras on their island tour
Looking over Les Saintes
Who's having fun?
From the fort

Cute couple at Le Chameau - see the airport over Brad's left shoulder?   
These two are good company. AND, they actually can read their novels as we bounce through the waves. Pisses Pam off. 

See you in Dominica!!!

Saturday, January 5, 2019


Well, we're in France. Deshaies, Guadeloupe to be exact.

Nice to be here - but getting here was like riding in a washing machine.

Since my last post we had a few nice Antigua anchorage days. We spent 2 nights at Hermitage Bay, visiting Deep Bay for a hike and some beach time. Had some time to do some shelling and explore the Hermitage Bay Resort beach before checking out at Jolly and heading over to Carlisle Bay to stage for our trip down.

Unscheduled time
Murphy and us from Brad's vantage in Deep Bay

The people on this yacht have been staring enviously at us

Out exploring Carlisle
Charming couple on Carlisle beach

Beauty boat at sunset

A photo of me taking a photo of them
We've been experiencing some not-normal weather. Lots of clouds, one completely rainy day, squalls and then blazing sun. Some extra wind, too, which adds to our stress level when contemplating a day of sailing.

So we crossed our fingers and set out from Carlisle at about 8:30. We made good time (6.5 hours) doing the 41 miles - but it was crazy sailing. Reefs in both sails, then no reefs 'cause the wind disappeared. Then reefs again 'cause we were getting knocked over. Otto the autopilot decided to go on strike so that meant someone at the wheel the whole time. Our new side curtains from JustCanvas in Antigua (Yay Janina!!!) kept us mostly dry but the helms person got soaked.

So we got here kind of beaten up but happy to be in Deshaies. And... we got a nice squall just when we got in so the caked salt got all washed off. Bonus!

When you get squalls you get rainbows.
Swabby at the helm

Didn't catch a mahi on the way so...

Leffe beer!

Ouassous au lait de coco 

Tomorrow we'll head south to swim at Pigeon Island and overnight at Basse Terre. Then onto funky Les Saintes. Definitely need to rent a scooter there to tour the tiny tourist island. After too much fun here in France we'll head down to Dominica for a brief visit before Kim and Brad head back home.

More later! Thanks for reading.