Wednesday, May 27, 2009
St. Lucia was as far as we intended to go north so on back south! We cleared out in Rodney Bay and then went to Wallilabou St. Vincent. The big draw here is that the bay was the location where they shot much of Pirates of the Caribbean. OK. As you enter the bay you will be approached by ‘boat boys’ who will help you get a mooring (it’s very deep) and take a line to shore to point you into the swell. Fine. But they tend to be a little annoying and you don’t know who is working together or if you pay one guy does he pay the rest of the crew or what. So, I did my usual and just gave everyone some money. I don’t have much but I’m betting that they have less.
(Photo above of taken from restaurant with Enee in background)
So it goes. They also have no problem putting boats about 8 feet apart. There is nothing here and once you look at the old sets you’re done looking at stuff. You can get your money back (20 EC) for the mooring ball if you eat at the restaurant but all the dinners are like 100 EC! Each! So after a couple beers, we just went back to the boat. This is a stop that can be skipped. (Well, ok..... it is beautiful there as this picture shows. So maybe must cruise in for a few photo opts then be on your way)
On to Bequia! We like Bequia and it was fine to be back for a few days. We had one of those sporty sails across the channel between St. Lucia and St. Vincent and flogged the headsail* pretty badly and then noticed some stitching coming out of the UV cover. This happened before and was repaired way back in Key West! We took it to Grenadines Canvas who made our wonderful sun/rain awning and they managed repairs the same day.
(Photo of Princess Margaret beach from the caves - Bequia)
Our plan now is to sail around the southwest tip of Bequia and then east to Friendship Bay on the south coast of Bequia. We had walked there on a previous visit and we think it will be a pretty anchorage even if it is a little rolly as advertised. What a great little 5 mile sail! Down wind and wing and wing to the tip of Bequia and then east and upwind to Friendship. We accidently unrolled the foresail to a new position and holy crap. . . Maybe we CAN tack this boat 90 degrees! We had more sail out than usual but not all of the sail. Close hauled the clue of the sail was just even with the upper shroud. I think in this configuration we get a decent sail shape without being overpowered. We’ve typically had more than this rolled up and I think the big ugly cylinder of unused sail along the luff makes for too much turbulence and a rotten sail shape. Nice! Of course at one point we got a sheet tangled on one of our mast steps and then I was sure that we had no engine power again and pulses went up and then back down as all was actually well.
It is a little rolly in Friendship bay but we have a pretty high tolerance for a gentle roll and that’s what this was. We rigged dinghy and found a nice piece of shallow for snorking too. Later we went ashore where there is a very high line resort. Swings at the bar instead of stools. Fun! We had a couple of rum drinks and then back to Enee.
The other reason for coming to Friendship Bay was to get some east in to get a good point of sail to Union Island the next day. Only 25 miles but we’d really like to sail it comfortably . By coming to Friendship we add 10 degrees to our course and you can feel that! So early Monday morning we head out of Friendship. The wind is on or just abaft the beam. Yes! We set the sail and off the engine. Beautiful! We are on course and sailing easily at 6 to 7 knots the whole way. One of the finest sails we’ve ever had! Almost four years of living aboard and sailing and we still get totally jazzed with this kind of day.
About 2 miles from Chatham Bay we heard a SPROING. Sue and I simultaneously scream: “FISH ON”. Yep we caught another one. First thing we did was to hove to. Haven’t done this lately and maybe never on this boat but like most boats she sits nicely hove to. For those of you who don’t do this it’s easy. You tack but just backwind the foresail. Once through the wind you let the boom out all the way and then turn the wheel to windward and lock it. That’s it. The boat will gently drift downwind and allow you to take care of what ever like reeling in your fish!
MISMO! Kiss my FISH!
Another nice little tuna (5-8 pounds maybe) or horse eye jack as they are also called. We got him aboard and put the nasty french rum in the gills and that did it. Killed him. Does the same to me! We covered him with a wet towel and once we anchored in Chatham we let him dangle in the water since we are without ice or refrigeration. I decided to cut the fillets just before we cook them.
Went ashore and had a couple of beers at Jerry’s Bar on the beach. Jerry is a great guy but so low key I’m afraid he doesn’t get much business. Back to Enee for backgammon and snacks then time to eat the fish! An excellent dinner ensued. Nothing like a great sail followed by eating the fish you caught along the way. A bottle of wine and all is well on Enee Marie.
Except. . .
Yes, we are sharing the anchorage with another party catamaran. 3 couples from Tennessee (state motto: Go Hogs!). None of them sail or know anything about it but they have a hired captain. I talked to one of the guys who snorked over by our boat. (The captain in the meantime was trying unsuccessfully to anchor their boat.) It seems one guy just graduated grad school and one other just turned 30. So, I’m thinking well, that’s pretty grown up. Wrong! Unless you call dressing up in little pirate outfits (including small plastic swords) and driving around the anchorage in the dinghy going ARGGGGG and WoOOOO WOOOO. Please head, don’t explode! They also have a women with really high pitched and annoyingly drunken horse laugh on board. This is a requirement for party boats I’ve found. Maybe they are supplied by the charter company. At one point this crew was loudly singing along with some patriotic song about being proud to be an American. I wasn’t so proud at the time. Maybe they should look up irony in the dictionary. Dictionary? I guess there is no place left on the planet to hide from rudeness. The party went on to about midnight. Perhaps the Caribbean is becoming the next Daytona, Ft. Lauderdale, CanCun. I wish the charter companies would have their captains explain about how sound travels on the water and how if they just stop and listen for a moment they would find that they are the only boat making a ruckus. Perhaps take a look at the stars? A little common courtesy perhaps? I know, that went out with 8 track tapes.
(Above photo of a 'crabby' bird which we were two of because of these bozos!)
Tomorrow I’ll walk to Clifton again. I know the way now and clear customs. We can sail the next day then the 12 miles back to Carriacou which is part of Grenada and clear back in. If the Tennessee boys are still here though we’ll head out later today.
GO HOGS! (crap. . . )
*Yes, you can go blind if you do this too much.