It’s May 30th and I am on the 19:00-22:00 watch, sailing close hauled (that’s 45 degrees off the breeze in our cat) under a single reefed main and a full jib at 5.8 kts in 10-11 kts of true wind. Seas are calm and we are humming along in light trade winds just after sunset. The radar is on and clear and the AIS shows no one in sight. I’ll put in a short hitch tack in about 1.5 hours to get us around a reef and set us up for a dawn arrival in the Turks and Caicos. Life is very good.
Here is the strange part. I am sitting in the salon with the air conditioning on! We needed to fire the generator to make water from the clean 15,000 ft deep water (see a separate post for our hove to dip). Since the generator was going to be on anyway, we decided to have an air conditioned clean out the fridge dinner utilizing the microwave. We stopped short of watching an episode of ‘Extras’ (a new Ricky Gervaise show) from the iPad, but just barely. All the while sailing along.
Life is strangely good.
While Arthur whiled away the day in his hummus punnet, we decided we ought to practice some man overboard recovery. We started with the last part: getting back on board. After the person has been recovered and is secured to the boat, how do you get them back on board? You can try the sugar-scoops (steps) at the back, but in a heavy sea they will be bouncing up and down and could cause injury. The safest way is over the side on the lee of the boat.
On Friday, we discovered our first stowaway or pet or capture — hard to say.
During routine cleaning of our sea strainer, Pete found the usual seaweed detritus plus the tiniest octopus we’d ever seen.
Yesterday we hit Georgetown, the last cruisers refuge before you leave the safety of the bank (protected shallow water). A lot of people get stuck here … forever! There is a hurricane hole on the north side of the harbor that is packed with boats that no longer move. Some are cruisers too scared to go further, some are just retired people living on their boats, and some are drop outs in floating plywood shacks like you would see in Sausalito. They all seem to walk over the hill to the beach everyday and then back to the boat at night with weekly trips to town across the harbor for provisions. It seems like it might be fun for a little while, but a ‘Sartre’-like prison in the long term. Continue reading
This is the first of what I hope will be many fish stories. I will be brief to make sure this works. So far I have bagged a strawberry grouper, a lion fish, and a “summer crab” (not shown as it resembles an out of season lobster). Continue reading
We had a hive of bees in our mast.
Pete went up the mast one Sunday afternoon when we were docked at Fiesta Way. At a point close to the top, he asked to be let down – there was a surprising intensity and urgency in his voice when he asked. Continue reading
Today is Sunday and we are at the dock and getting more work done (Jane and I working on provisioning for passages / Costco shopping, Tony and Pete doing work on the Generator, Water Maker, and several other systems). The temperature warms quickly so by 10 am, it is already 80 plus degrees and getting too warm to be outside. Most people stay inside mid-day which was our plan today. Continue reading
We ate many meals aboard and sometimes as a reward for our working efforts, meals out served a necessary distraction from a day filled with working on the boat.
Here are the places we would recommend, should we be back in Fort Lauderdale. Continue reading