Thursday, June 30, 2011

Fun at GTC!

Equinox on anchor off the Bluff House at Green Turtle Cay, with
Lucy on her hip
We have been busy little bees here since our arrival at Green Turtle three days ago! After getting some sleep, we moved the boat to a better spot, tucking in along the shore just north of the entrance to White Sound. There, we awaited the arrival of our friends from Jensen Beach, Jim and Vicky, and their son Jay, who all made the passage in their 35' Intrepid. (It was a rather wet ride for them between the rain and the spray, unfortunately, but nothing too onerous!) We had them fender up along our portside, and had our own little raft-up!

The weather, while warm and humid, has been somewhat gray and dismal at times since the cloudy weather tempered the sun’s rays. Of course, that hasn’t dampened any spirits! Since their arrival, we’ve done as much as we possibly could, from running in to The Green Turtle Club Wednesday night to dance to the music of The Gully Roosters (“Number 1 Band in the Nation!”) to walking about historic New Plymouth on Thursday, to fine dining in the saloon of Equinox (fresh mahi fillets, spinach and leek risotto, steamed asparagus and Captain Ron’s awesome chopped salad), to movie nights and sundowners aboard. What a treat to be back in the Abacos!

Tidy clapboard homes and bright flowers adorn the streets of New Plymouth
A detail of one of the charming wooden doors
We did of course, have to introduce Jim, Vicky and Jay to
Miss Emily's! Violet, Emily's granddaughter, now runs the place
but rest assured the Goombay Smash is still a favorite!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Back To The Boat!

I apologize for the hiatus from blog posts these past few weeks! Life on the hard has been busy -- fabulously so -- filled with fun family events from weddings and relaxation time together to travel and adventure. It just hasn't been on the high seas, but rather, on both highways and byways, bike lanes and hiking trails...a bit of off-the-boat rejuvenation time, all of which has provided a great sense of balance. 

Now though, we're back aboard!! After our indulgence of play time on land, getting things done aboard was the hard part -- but, as always, if it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done! Thankfully though, we did use the time we had and got the majority of projects addressed. While there are still a couple items left, we will have more time in August and September when we are back once more. 

Our list, you ask? We had a list of items small and large that we wanted to accomplish, from getting the recalcitrant holding tank monitor back in working order to replacing the ice maker under the salon bookcase, to doing routine maintenance items like oil changes, filter changes and the like, to getting our autopilot and electronics software glitches addressed. Then of course, one of the A/C units decided to be balky at the last minute....typical! It IS a boat, right?? There will always be a project of some sort waiting ahead!

So, while Ron continued to oversee the boat work prior to departure, I focused on our stores. I’d hit Sam’s Club for some dry goods/canned goods/frozen meats provisioning last week; it felt a bit odd knowing we were only going over to the islands for just a few weeks, rather than months – and I discovered it was hard to pull in the provisioning reins, and not go whole hog! Plus, having cleaned out the pantry in its entirety last month while boat work was being done, I had to totally re-stock that from scratch, something I’d not needed to do in quite some time! (I’m glad I saved my huge multi-page provisioning list from years past, as it was really helpful to use as a reference!) We'll undoubtedly find out what I forgot to bring!

So, happily, with work completed, we are underway once again! We left at first light on Tuesday, getting the dock lines off the pilings and freeing Equinox from her berth. I stepped off Equinox after prepping her tow-line on the stern, then followed in Tingum as we exited the Outrigger Harbour marina basin. Once in the open waters of the Indian River, we paused to get Tingum in tow and made our way down the ICW to the St. Lucie Inlet. It’s a bit of a tricky inlet at times since it’s prone to shoaling; thankfully we’ve run the inlet in Tingum a number of times this past month while fishing, so knew that the deepest water was closer to the southern jetty so kept plenty of water under us as we exited.

Weather was warm, gray and cloudy, with isolated showers in the forecast for afternoon, but the easterly winds were light, 7-10 knots and seas just 2’ -3’. It never really cleared up, and we did get a brief washdown in the light rain we encountered as we came onto the Little Bahama Bank. We cruised through the night, without incident (as we like it!) and saw nary a soul until we dropped anchor outside New Plymouth, Green Turtle Cay in the wee hours of the morning. Ah --- how nice it is, to be back to the Abacos!! Fun adventures to follow, I am certain!