The airline tickets have been purchased and we're really excited about seeing our new grandchildren, Chloe and Kendall for the holidays. We are updated regularly but it's not the same as seeing them in person, snuggle, hug, kiss, kiss etc. It's not long now 'til Christmas, so we have put up the decorations. It took half an hour to get them out of their hidey hole and five minutes to erect!
We are getting to know our fellow cruisers and it appears that there's quite an active community here. We are walking most mornings in a group. Not a day goes by without someone knocking on the hull to chat or give us information about something or other. There's a Xmas party this week for the RMHYC members.
Vanessa went snorkeling off the beach one day and found a couple of sand dollars but not much else. She was the only person brave enough to get into the cold waters. Actually she was the only person on the beach! The cold fronts come in so frequently that there's no time for it to warm up.
Andrew bought himself a machete (or "cutlass" as the locals say). He says it's for opening the coconuts, but I'm not too sure! It certainly does a good job. We will be eating lots of coconut and drinking lots of pina coladas.
We have been out bike riding but haven't done the grocery shopping yet. However we did notice that prices here aren't as bad as we thought they'd be. More on that later.
The winner of the "What fish is this?" contest (November's letters home) is Linda from Live Wire II. Congratulations Linda! The drink's on us next time we see you. The fish is from the mackerel family (a Cero possibly), not a barracuda as we first thought.
The Xmas party was super. We met lots more cruisers and "dirt dwellers" (they are land people) - see you learn something new all the time! Vanessa even got a hug from Santa.
The Full Moon party later in the week was fun. It was held on the beach and it was rather chilly and windy. They had a fire-pit which was a big draw and a band playing "mowtown" Christmas music!
On Saturday we went to the local Christmas festival where Andrew met the Bahamian Prime Minister (Hubert Ingram) See picture. We also saw the "Army Marching Band" (Click here for small video) and sampled some of the local food.
The weather is very windy and there's not much sunshine. The boat rocks a bit in its slip when it blows over 20 knots, however it feels good not having to worry that the anchor might be dragging!
The coconuts are blowing off the trees and Andrew got a lesson from the resort landscaper on using the machete to get the coconuts out of the husk. We are now experimenting with using coconut in our cooking. We are so enjoying the community at the harbor - everyone is so friendly, we have "Game Afternoon" if the weather looks bad and the laughter is contagious.
It was the Xmas boat parade this week and the RMHYC had a private party to watch the festivities from Mangoes restaurant. Although there wasn't much to watch a good time was had by all. In keeping with the season Vanessa attached some of her sea shell collection to our onboard Xmas tree, covering the mini lights. In the dark they make a great show.
We took a day trip on Tally Ho with Pat and Ray to Tahiti Beach. The sky was grey but it was nice and warm (well not that warm) for snorkeling. There weren't too many shells to find but Vanessa found an interesting green starfish, not a keeper as it was still alive, but a find nonetheless.
More baby pictures have arrived and we can't wait to see the little'uns in person. They look so squeezable!!! Ha, ha.
We flew home on Monday. Vanessa was co-pilot from Marsh Harbour to Ft. Lauderdale. Both flights were delayed and it took us 12 hours from door to door. A long trip for a total of four hours in flight! Mathew picked us up at Dulles Airport. The house is still standing and looks clean. Well done Mat!
We didn't see the rest of the family until Tuesday when Hannah and Bobby dropped the babies off and disappeared within minutes. It was the briefest greeting we've ever had! "Hi Mum and Dad, the diapers are in the bag and the milk bottles are in the fridge, see ya!" I think they enjoyed their few hours of freedom and we certainly had a ball (one was balling nonstop!) with the girls.
We went to our neighbors house on Xmas eve and that got us into the Xmas spirit. Later that night Andrew was so spirited he fell out of bed at 2:00am and (bad dream he says) split his head open, at the same time making a hole in the bedroom wall. What a nightmare it must have been.....thoughts of dashing to the emergency room entered my head, but fortunately after a clean up all was fine and we went back to sleep before Santa came!
On Xmas day we went to Hannah's and Bobby's house, where Mat prepared the meat and Hannah did the rest of the meal, while we played with our girls and Nellie. Poor Nellie is a little left out these days but she is marvelous with the babies. It was really lovely to be all together for the day.
We will be seeing Chloe and Kendall quite a bit this week and it's going to be hard when it comes time to leave. Whoops, now I've a lump in my throat so that's it for now. More later!