Sunday, November 20, 2011

At Anchor & on to Carriacou, an island off Grenada

November 15, 2011
Ah, so wonderful to be at anchor again.  We cruised out into the anchorage outside of Port Louis, picking up a mooring ball.    My skills are rusty!   I replayed in my mind what I had to do & had to wind the tape over a few times.   Ugh, my favorite lines were yet to be delivered to us from the Marina, so I struggled with the heavy 100’ one till I finally got it attached to one side of the mooring line.  Thank goodness no real current or wind as the bow thruster isn’t working from the helm station where we pilot from.  Andy will have to figure that one out tonight.  The thruster works just fine from the lower helm station.

Dropping the hook off Port Louis Marina, St. Georges

Settling in,  chicken on the grill and watching the sky turn to a vivid yellow and orange - I realized this is a sight I’ve so missed as the Marina is behind a hill from the Caribbean Sea.  As the sky got darker and darker, I could not tell which lights in the sky were anchor lights of the boats around us or low hanging stars!  Beautiful!  We swayed gently all night long - the best sleep I’ve had in a very long time!  It doesn’t get any better than gently rocking side to side, a nice breeze through the cabin and the smell of the sea!   EXCEPT when it REALLY rocks!  We did that few times during the night - wonder what in the world set off the wave action?!  ‘Stuff’ on the boat and on the aft deck would bounce around, waking us up over and over.  No matter.  Glad to be out!
Ah, so beautiful
And we are OFF!  Nope, false alarm.  Ready to release from the mooring ball, I saw that it had somehow - due to all that wave action - gotten caught on our starboard stabilizer.  Ugh.  Try as I might, in snorkel, fins and gloves, banging against the hull in the waves, I could not pull the mooring line free (the one attached to the mooring ball from the concrete anchor block below).  Andy donned his gear, splashed in and the two of us struggled with it.  Finally, Andy got the line free, with no harm done.

UPDATE:  We later learned after we arrived at Tyrrel Bay, Carriacou, from friends on the S/V Dance Aweigh, who are anchored here in Tyrrel Bay where we are,  that those mooring lines are too long & that is why we had the problem.  Seems they were built for 60’ of water and the depth there is less than 20’....Yes, way too long.  Our friends, Rich & Margaret, hooked up to one recently.   Shortly thereafter, another boat hooked up to one next to them.   Suddenly they found themselves nearly slamming together as the tide and current changed.  Only one fender quickly shoved between them saved the boat.  Yes, lines too long and the guy in charge of them knows it (he is the one who said they are too long) but does nothing...  Beware to anyone following behind us in this anchorage!!!!
You just KNOW you're gonna get WET
Scary looking, but not so bad
Four hours later, through bouncing seas and several brief squalls, we dropped the hook in Tyrrel Bay, Carriacou, Andy a bit pea green.
Carriacou & Petite Martinique are part of Grenada and all became independent about 40 years ago.  Known as 'the land of reefs' (I would think just about ANY of these island could be called that!), Carriacou is only 13 square miles harboring 7,000 people.

Boom, in nothing flat, before I’d even finished setting the anchor, boat boys - men this time, arrived.  Three in a row - must be the first new boater in a day or so.  Nope, don’t want to go ashore at the moment to eat in your restaurant; nope, don’t need a taxi ride; nope, don’t want that $18 USD bottle of Merlot...ahhh, Andy bought it!  Nope, don’t want a lobster meal at the moment.  

Rainbows every day!  Clearing as we entered the Bay
The pot of gold is close by!
Simon is persistent...... Alright!  Alright!  Alright!   "Yes", we do want the mangrove oysters...”OK, mon.  Will go pick them and be right back”.  Ten minutes later, he was back, shucking them right at our swim platform!  I baked 12 oysters -- tiny things and Andy ate them...just OKAY was the response when queried as to how good they were.  Me, gag.  Like trying to swallow a raw egg...

Shucking the oysters for Andy

Oysters don't get any fresher than this.... Simon went to the mangrove, got them & shucked them for Andy

Small barnacles still attached & still STINKY

My short term goal in life is to clean all the stiff lines and to finish scrapping the barnacles off the ones delivered to us yesterday.

Andy’s goal is to fix the bow thruster and whatever else strikes his fancy in the engine room.

I think we will nap first.......island mentality is contagious.

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