Mar 9

“Flat as a shingle”! When the Cruiser’s Net starts their broadcast like that, it is a good dey, mon! Let’s get the dinghies down and boogie over to Man O’ War! We saw giant rays &  flying fish on the way over. Walked all the little streets & visited all the shops. Checked out their lovely beaches and had lunch at Dock & Dine. I had grilled Grouper fingers and Bahamian Mac & Cheese and it was superb. Got together tonight on Salty Dog for some of us who are leaving this week, us included.  In the last few days we have begun to say goodbye to some of the “seasonal residents” who have been here for their winter months. They will begin to trek back to their homes in the North, many from Canada,  for Spring & Summer. All the boaters come out to wave them off and boat horns blow and they yell from the harbour “See you next Year”!

Not a bad life! Nice escape for them to avoid harsh winters. Everyone ask, “Will you be back next year?” I don’t know if we will ever make it back, but I know that I will always think of this place in the winter time. And hey, we made it here this year.  Yes we are blessed, Thank you God!

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 10

The Royal Marsh Harbour Yacht Club is an organization you can join here for $125 with annual renewals of $30. Members get a variety of discounts including half price slip fees, discounts on power and water (yes, we buy water here) at Abaco Beach Club, exercise & water aerobic classes everyday,  social functions and much more. It’s an instant network with many benefits and we were their guest tonight. The full moon was celebrated with a “Pirates Howl at the Moon” Party. Everyone dressed appropriately, we dined on Cornish hens, watched skits performed by each dock group, and danced.  It was fun!

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 11

Friends from Salty Dawg, Darling, Christine & Good News come over for brunch this morning. What a great opportunity to show these Yanks how good cheese grits are! We will miss these guys when we leave and hope to run into them again sometime somewhere on the East Coast. Plans are made for us to leave here on Friday. We will stay one night on the hook at Tahiti Beach where the shelling is suppose to be terrific and a night or two at Seaspray Marina on Elbow Cay. Tonight was also our last night to eat at the Jib Room. We will miss the camaraderie of all our dock neighbors that are here from literally all over the world. Although we are greatly looking forward to all the interesting & fun places we have ahead of us, this has been a special place with special people. We will always remember them all fondly, too many to name, but especially ALICE!

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 12

Mixed emotions as we prepare to leave. Excited to be on the move again yet melancholy when hugging everyone goodbye. Spent the day checking fluid levels, changing zincs, and having the boat bottom scrubbed. Salt water & sitting still are not the best thing for a boat. The diver came up with a big rope that we had twisted around the port prop and said we had a slight ding on the starboard side. Glad we had it checked. Topped off water tanks as we will be buying water by the gallon when we leave our “long term” slip where we paid a flat $50 for the month. Bought Grouper and Mahi Mahi for the freezer. Weather forecast is good and we will spend the first night on the hook at Tahiti Beach and try to find some nice conch shells, sea biscuits & sand dollars to take to the grandchildren when we make our trip home in April. Mary fixed a great spiced beef dish tonight and I did Portabellos with goat cheese and 1903 Salad.

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 13

Bon Voyage and Thank you to Boo, Tom & the Boys (Stephen, Mario & Jason) for your wonderful Marsh Harbour Marina Hospitality! We pull out behind Good News and Brad does another excellent job of maneuvering around that big Hatteras! I hollered at Jason to go stand on the Hat just in case he needed to push us off (the wind was blowing pretty good). It’s like I told Jason, if we could afford to pay for a big Hat, we’d be riding on one!! LOL!!! On to Tahiti Beach for a noon stroll on the beach. Not so many shells there at noon.  We decide to head back to the boats & come back at 4:30pm which is low tide. 

Eureka! Found a lot more marine life at low tide. It’s just so darn pleasant to be here where the water is so beautiful & warm, the sound of the breakers on the ocean side, the sun shining, everyone relaxed and happy! Hard to believe this isn’t heaven. What must heaven be like????? Grilled Ahi Tuna with great side dishes----we are SO spoiled!!!

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 14

Boating can be challenging! Take for instance this morning when our windlass stopped working. Late last evening  a catamaran came in and anchored almost on top of our anchor. He was pretty alert this morning when I had to drive while Brad hauled the anchor in by hand with heavy winds blowing. When we got it up, he came over in his dinghy to help us get a big chunk of Elbow Cay off our anchor.  Piling the anchor and rode on deck and setting that little problem aside, we cruised less than a mile to the channel into Sea Spray Marina, so named because the cay is so narrow here that you can clearly here the breakers even though we are on the lee side of the island. The sea spray and salty wind easily make their way over the small dune separating us.  The wind made for dicey docking and it took us 3 thrilling tries to get into our slip. Definition of successful docking: A controlled crash into a dock leaving marks on neither the dock or the ship!! No matter how long it takes you. Other Loopers here to help us secure and work on the windlass! Lunch at “On da Beach” with Kismet’s Jim & Lisa Favors and Good News’ Sarvers.  The girls walked down to Abaco Inn to get Wifi this afternoon while the boys worked on the boat. We did a bring a dish cookout and the band was playing in the outdoor Tiki Hut by the time we were through eating.   

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 15

Beautiful sunny day! We explore the area because even though we have been to Elbow Cay twice on day trips, we were 5 miles further North in Hope Town. There are some nice houses in the area including one that is owned by the owner of the Miami Dolphins. Around lunch time today we walked up to The Abaco Inn on the beach where they had an Artist’s Show  today.  Fifteen local artist exhibited oil paintings, watercolors, jewelry, wood carvings and other handmade items.  They had music & food served on the patios.

Back at our marina, we were buzzed by a helicopter landing next to our dock.  Just a young family that has a place on Treasure Cay hopping down to our marina restaurant for lunch. Talk about the lifestyles of the rich & famous!!

There are seven Looper Boats here at Seaspray and we had cocktails by the pool with them before we cooked dinner with the Favors and the Sarvers. There was a commotion on the dock during dinner. We were slow and missed seeing the actual shuttle as it passed a little to our North (was projected to pass over Great Sale Cay where we anchored coming in the Abacos) but the sky was lit up with the contrails. What a thrill.

 

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 16

Looks like a great day for island hopping and there were a lot of boats about as we waved bye to our friends and moved North to Treasure Cay. As soon as we were out of the Sea Spray channel we fell in behind “Night Star” (Joe & Judy) so we gave them a yell on the VHF radio.  They had spent the night on the hook at Tahiti Beach and headed to a mooring in Hope Town for tonight. Their son Joey will join them in Marsh Harbor on Wed.  As we pulled into Treasure Cay Marina we saw “Finally Fun” dropping an anchor in the bay! They have guest on their boat but Andy dinghied in for a chat. We are really going to miss this sense of community when we leave the Abacos. Treasure Cay has a beautiful beach and we went for a beach walk right after Mary and I visited the grocery store for produce & other luxury items. Our provisions have held up pretty well but I have to tell you that on most of these islands, they are not familiar with what we call a grocery store. When we see a market that is bigger than a Fox Photo booth, you can hear a joyful cry go up from us both! Even though we may be 2 weeks away from getting back to the States, I’m already compiling my list for the first Publix that comes into view.

Am I complaining? No, no, no! We are having Lobster again for dinner tonight!!

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.

Mar 17

Happy St Patty’s Day! I wore the green today but could not find any corn beef in the grocery today. Beautiful this morning and Mary & I did our walk on a long white beach. This beach was suppose to have a lot of sand dollars but we did not find any.  A front moved through mid afternoon and we got some much needed rain.  We arrived in the Bahamas the last week of January and we have seen about 4 showers none of which lasted more than 5 minutes.  Today it actually rained for 2 hours and it was kind of nice. We have enjoyed seeing Treasure Cay and will move on to Guana tomorrow.

Please install Flash® and turn on Javascript.