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January 2010

Week One:

Mathew drove us to BWI in the snow at 3a.m. on  January 5th after spending a very busy two weeks at home enjoying the family and cleaning the house. Which, by the way, is now a fully furnished rental for short or long term rent. Click here to see property.

We arrived back in Marsh Harbour on time and without any problems although the flight from Miami was rather bumpy. Vanessa doesn't want to fly out of here or sail out, so it looks like we'll be staying. It's chilly here and we are glad we have our sweaters and long pants onboard. We're using the Tilley lamp to keep us warm and give us light but we may resort to turning on the heat if this cold spell lasts much longer. Thank heavens we have hot water bottles ....................... aaahh the Bahamas! What happened to Global Warming!

We've been very busy since we got to the boat. On arrival we turned on all the systems and to our consternation the fridge wouldn't work. Five hours later and with the help of our neighbor Paul, (who just happened to carry a spare electronic module for his condenser, that also just happened to be identical to our failed one!) we managed to get it up and running (for now).  By then it was too late to go to the grocery store so we all went out to dinner.

The following day we had drinks aboard David and Betty's "Tar Heel" with our friends Sue and Carl "Windrose" who had arrived in Abaco whilst we were visiting the children. It really is a small world, this sailing community, and it's great to visit with our friends again. Greg - if you're reading this we look forward to seeing you soon!

Another day goes by and now we're off to a land party at Slipaway, the home of one of the RMHYC members, Doug Fay. We had a wonderful time and Doug was certainly the perfect host. Luckily the weather cheered up for us and it was sunny and warm.

Not so on the next day when we took our "stinkpot" friends out for a day sail. It was cool and the clouds were rolling in. We are expecting some nasty conditions for the next few days, so we thought we'd go out for a quick jaunt. We all had fun despite the cool temps. At least I think we all had fun!!!!!!


Us on one of the many terraces at Slipaway.

View of the Sea of Abaco

A fun time was had by all.

Was this a fun time too? A day sail with Shirley, Judy and Lois..........brrrgh!

At least the guys were warm. Carl, Ed and Gene.



Week Two:

Well, the weather did come in and it has been quite nasty. I think it got down to below 50 degrees one night. We got the wind and rain and the cold too. Friends on boats in South Florida posted some pictures that had us in stitches - see them below.

 On Sunday we had company for dinner, Sue, Carl, David & Betty. Fortunately for us, we found out that Sue and Carl would be leaving this week for PA, and as our refrigerator (conked out again) needs a new part they will kindly bring it back with them. Ordering parts, shipping parts, making calls and most of the things we take for granted in the States are major hassles out here.

Andrew has been busy cooking for the Chili Cook Off. It is certainly chilly weather! He didn't win the contest but his dish was very tasty. We have both been living in the bathroom since sampling all the varieties. 'Twas a fun evening though.

Looks like we are out of the cold spell and should be in for some good weather soon. It will be nice to get out for a warm sail, and into the water for a swim.

Bill (Sunshine) in South Florida

Just had to include this.

Florrie (Harmony) in South Florida

Dinner aboard Tally Ho

Group of Chefs

Chef Andrew in Tally Ho galley preparing his Chili

Other chefs having a break (Wink and Paul)

The beach with trash on Tilloo

Vanessa in normal position.


Week Three:

This has been a very busy and tiring week. We went out on a power Cat (Teamwork) for the day with Roger & Mary and their other guests. We had a great day drifting over a sunken barge and watching all the fish swimming in and out of the crevices. The following day we went fishing outside the reef aboard John Henry. We left the dock at 8 a.m. with more than 20 people aboard. By 1 p.m. we had caught so many fish we couldn't store any more. It took most of the afternoon to clean them. Vanessa caught the biggest Queen Trigger fish and an Ocean Trigger too as well as Hind and Grouper. Andrew rigged his line to catch two fish at once and came up trumps with two Hinds followed by more Strawberry Grouper. By the end of the day we were exhausted. The weather conditions were great and although there was a lot of betting on when Andrew would "chuck" (or chum), nobody won........he did us proud! If you do not have a strong stomach for rolling seas we highly suggest taking "Stugeron" it did the job for him.

We had a "fish fry" at our new community park, and a great time was had by all.

Our fridge is still giving us trouble and we are anxiously awaiting the return of Sue and Carl with our spare part. If that doesn't fix the problem then we shall be making tracks back to the US sooner than we would like. Whilst writing this our part arrived and it's now installed................keep your fingers crossed!


Sunken barge

Looking for fish

We spotted the dreaded Lionfish!

Got cake? Sue and Mary

Lounging after a long hard day floating around.

View from our home at Boat Harbour

"John Henry" leaving for the fishing day.

Our marina

Dinner anyone!

Fishing team

Catch of the day! Queen trigger

Bocce Ball

The fish fry party.

Roger and Andrew - full

Sue & Wilma (The frying twins)

Jim - The master fisherman.

Let's party.

Wilma and Wink who kindly had the fishing boat for the trip.


Week Four:

It's another busy week. Our friends John & Diane (Duetto) arrived last week but we were so tied up we didn't get a chance to visit, so we took them and Wink and Wilma out for a sail and beachcombing day. Andrew stayed onboard whilst the rest of the gang went scavenging for shells, sea glass and junk. These islands are littered with junk from all over the world, mainly plastic debris, but there are some interesting finds. Our bike baskets were found washed up on the beach. Andrew has fashioned a dinghy ladder (yet to be tested) from a plastic tube and shovel handle found on a remote beach.

We had our first (and by no means last) "Dock 4 Sunday Brunch" that turned out exceedingly well even though it was rather breezy. We are making good use of the newly installed picnic tables and fresh herb garden planted by Judy Williams with help from Roberta and others.

Carl & Sue (Windrose) invited us to dinner and we had a lovely evening, although Andrew did have to rib Carl about his "blackened" chicken............can't take him anywhere! Carl being the gracious host just poured another rum punch for us all and was grateful he hadn't set fire to the dock!

Our yacht club maintains the dinghy dock in Marsh Harbour, and it was in need of some TLC, so all hands to the deck and the big boys managed to raise it up and fix it.

We've had a few nice days so we went out in the boat on day one and managed to find several more problems. The forward hatch handle broke for the second time - that won't be fun in a heavy sea! Why is it that when you want a glue to stick hard it won't, but when you make a mistake and need to make changes the stuff sticks fast? Murphy's Law I suppose. The chart plotter is up to it's old tricks again, intermittently scrambling the data, but this time the screen went completely blank on us. $$$$$$. Ah me!!!  And now the forward head is not doing what it should and we have company arriving in a week. $$$ Guess what.....the shower sump isn't working either. $$ This is not what's supposed to happen in Paradise.

Due to our boat maintenance situation we didn't go out on day 2 of good weather. Fortunately our neighbors on Teamwork, Roger & Mary, invited us to join them for a day of beachcombing and power boating. They draw 2 feet and can get into some great little places. It was in one of these "sailboat inaccessible" spots that we saw several turtles and a rather large nurse shark. We had a fun day and did not look forward to returning home for the inevitable "fix it" chores.

Friday was a beautiful day (we hear)...........but we were lying on the cabin sole, in the bilge, in the forward head, nose to the grindstone and not making much progress. So we'll see what next week brings.

Dinner aboard Windrose

A day sail. Wink & Diane.

Sunday Brunch with Shirley

......and the rest of Dock 4.

Fixing the dinghy dock in Marsh Harbour.

Herb garden.

Capt'n Andrew with Tally Ho at the dock.

Roger, Mary and V returning with their finds.

Nurse shark in Tilloo Pond.