Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Some pics from places where thar ain't no snow.
Paanga! good to hear from you - send us an email - bigsue58@hotmail.com

Monday, February 25, 2008

Sorry about the long hiatus. There just warn't much news to pass along while we were stuck in the lagoon in St. Martin. But now we've moved! We celebrated our arrival in Anguilla, with a big greasy Canadian breakfast (maple syrup involved).

We escaped from the lagoon on Friday. Randy thought the plan would be to up anchor, make the 8:15 bridge opening, have breakfast and go in and clear customs. Michelle from Mi Amante, also on their way out of St. Martin, says, Are you kidding? We're in France! Up anchor, clear customs, then eat breakfast ashore. The voice of reason prevailed, and she and I even got in some shopping while the guys were clearing customs. I bought a pair of apricot-coloured shoes. Happy happy joy joy!

Final French bunch (for a while) was croque monsieur (fat), croissants with ham and cheese (fat), coffee and cold beer. Time to get back to the chicken lips and feet diet.

Then we said goodbye to Mi Amante and upped anchor for the rigorous sail over to Anguilla. Two hours under mizzen and jib. It was so lovely to see turquoise water again, and to actually be headed somewhere new. When your home is a movable vehicle, there's something depressing about staying too long in one place. You start to feel like a failed traveller, like you're sleeping in your car, like your hull is growing streamers (it is). And the final hint that it was time to leave? We got back to the boat and there was an envelope from the Jehovah's Witnesses in the cockpit!! I thought for sure that we'd escaped that sort of thing....

February was a long month of big gusty winds and annoying chop in the lagoon, and big winds and big swells outside. Every morning, we'd listen to Chris Parker - Randy would really listen, I would catch a bit and then incorporate it into whatever I was still dreaming about...- and even Chris said that this was a long stretch of really windy weather. Too windy to varnish, and way too windy to consider installing the wind generator on the mizzen. Randy did go up and make some measurements, and we suffered a bit of a disappointment when we realized that the installation was going to involve moving the radar as well. The sensible thing to do is to wait until we haul the mast, and then do a good job of it. The idea of hanging about up there in high winds with power tools just doesn't appeal. Next season we'll have a wind generator. Damn. Re-stow the hairdryer.

But if the weather is going to keep you stuck for a while, St. Martin is a great place to stock up on all sorts of comestibles. After a month, you realize that you've been eating and drinking all your supplies, and you're grocery shopping every day to keep up with yourself, just cause you can. Again, time to go back to the chicken bits diet.

St. Martin is such an urban sort of experience, so many cars, so much construction, garbage, traffic and noise, that we didn't really explore too much this time around. Wimps. Our favourite exercise was evenings in the cockpit watching the goats on the Witch's Tit. It got to be that we could forecast a change in the weather - just a change, not what it would be - from watching how the goats picked their resting spots for the night.
Anguilla is very different from St. Martin in almost every way. It's a long, low island and the water is reminiscent of the Bahamas. Groceries ditto. Graham and Ann on Rasi are here, and they reported this morning that there was no bread and no milk to be had. We went ashore with them last night for happy hour at Roy's, on the beach in Road Bay. The sign said "happy hour, 4-6." There's a bit of a complicated maze of bars, and they all seem to be attached to Roy's, but asking about happy hour we got the snippy answer "5-7." And from another service person (total misnomer that), we got the information that "it's happy hour 4-6 Monday to Thursday and Sunday but Friday it's 5-7." I think she would have been a lot happier if we'd just stayed home. It's the service ethic that we've run into everywhere. No matter how nice you are, how polite, how clean, how ready to spend money and inquire about how their day is going, about 75 percent of the time, you get a face like a wet weekend and about as much conversation as you'd get from a deeply surly teenager. They could make a bomb in tips, and I'm sure they do when they can bring themselves to crack a smile.

Today, I'm going to swim! go for a row! Play with my new shoes! I'll post pictures in the next day or two.

Free Web Counter