Dear readers, from now on in this adventure, you should know that I am finally in the Bahama chain of islands and will only refer to the island and the area it is in. Think city and state but leaving country out of it if this helps you. Yes, there are different areas of the Bahama's but they aren't states so to speak.
Georgetown is in what is known as the Exuma's area. It is the last major area before one takes the leap southbound. It has the reputation of being called "chicken cay" because a lot of sailors and cruisers just chicken out from heading further south.
Fortunately we are heading north this trip and I have yet to discover why it is so scary to head south. Heck, I just came north with no stabilizers half the trip!
We turn into a "cut" between islands and look for a place to anchor. Georgetown harbor is a busy place in the peak months, but we are at the end of the season and most people have left. Hurricane season scares them off, and rightly so. If not that threat, the thought of ones insurance rates skyrocketing if you are stuck there in hurricane season would be enough to scare you back home.
Actually the harbor is more like a huge channel with land and islands on both sides. It is mid to late afternoon and we finally find a spot that looks appealing and has enough room for us. There is a trick to anchoring, but the basics are, to leave enough room between you and the other boats around you. This is necessary because the tides and currents and winds can change the position of all the boats, and it isn't fun when ones anchor comes loose in the middle of the night and you find yourself heading into a reef or worse yet, into another boat. There are a lot of specifics, but I won't bother with the details of those.
I happen to like the spot we chose, it had a nice view of one of the beaches, but we are also "next" to a boat just like mine at home.
Now this was sort of a good thing/ bad thing for me. It sort of kept me imagining that is what my boat will look like down here, but on the other hand, I wanted it to be my boat and I wanted to be on it and not LaChelle.
Pretty soon the owner of the boat stopped by in his dinghy and said hello.
There is a brotherhood of sorts among our brand of boat owners. There is also a cruiser club which I belong to and it turns out this guy was a member of as well. He and I chatted for a bit as did Leo, but Leo is not a member of the club so he was sort of lost on some of the people and stories. It turned out that this guy was heading for Rum Cay the next morning. That is the island we had just come from. I wished him well and went about preparing dinner.
The beach looked looked so inviting, but alas, we have not actually cleared into the Bahamas with Customs and Immigration and so the yellow quarantine flag goes up and stays until tomorrow. Sigh.
The next morning we wake up and while Leo and Chris were freshening up for the day I went to the back of the boat to wait for them. That is when I saw it in the water. What was it??? A dolphin right off the back of the boat. I so wanted to run in and grab the camera, but no way was I going to miss this. It sort of stopped and looked up at me, I smiled and then it went on its merry way. Awsome.
Now its time to drop the dinghy. Leo is the only one able to go to "town" at this point since he is the captain. I am chomping at the bit to get to land, but even more so to an internet cafe. Then the thought occured to me that Leo is able to do as he pleases once he gets checked in and could actually go to an internet place. If that was the case, I could be stuck for HOURS since Leo tends to get lost online as much as I do.
But he was a good guy and came back quickly and informed us that we all had to go to the C&I office. Wooooo Hooooo!
We pull up to the dinghy dock and then find our way to C&I. They ask us where our previous stop was and we say Turks and Caicos. Shhhhhhh, yes, Rum Cay is in the Bahamas, but they don't have a C&I office. Shame on us.
Oh come on, its not like the people of Rum Cay are going to turn us in. There are only about 50 residents there and we pretty much paid each one with the marina fee alone. : ) We are all stamped and legal and find the nearest internet cafe. How convenient, it is right next door.
Now it took me awhile to figure things out. No, not the internet, it was the shop that the computers were in. There were people standing in line going to a window that had one way tinting on it. Whoever was behind there was taking cash and handing receipts and other ticket sort of things. I wasn't being nosy, just observant. LOL I think it was a place to pay ones utilities but also to collect lottery winnings and more than likely it was a bookies place of operations. What do I know? It could be legal there. Soon I was done on the computer and figured out that I now needed to stand in the line to pay up. Everyone was very polite and told me to go to the front and just tell the person I need to pay for internet.
Ok......so I do. I hear a mans voice asking what I want. "um, to pay for internet use." "$7.00" I fork over the ransom money for a lousy 10 minutes and get out of there asap. Leo and Chris are still in there and I figured they were watching so knew the routine. I wanted to be out in the sunshine.
Leo comes out and says that we will be picking up two addtional crew members in a few days. I knew they were coming and have been looking forward to seeing one of them again. Scott was on the last trip I did with Leo. The same trip I became an Islaholic on. He was bringing a friend along and this was even better for me as I now had someone more my age and I could take off with in our free time. But they won't be here for a few days, so no point in making plans yet. Stuff happens.
Back at the boat Leo starts the generator so I can cook dinner. (he has an electric stove on LaChelle) Hhhhhhmm, something doesn't sound right.
Shut it off and try again. Thankfully it sounds right and I cook dinner.
We watch a movie and I call it an early night.
The next day the gen has bigger issues. Cooling pump is leaking fluid and that my friends is not a good thing. There will be no cooking unless we are hooked up to shore power at a marina or we grill or use the crockpot when the boat is running. Not a good situation. While Leo is in the engine room looking for spare parts and to peruse the problem (in other words sulk) I take a picture of this right behind our boat.
Thinking it looks slightly familiar, as in the one at Isla. Hey, I said SLIGHTLY !!! I sighed given my current predicament, wishing I was on Isla.
Next thing I know Leo announces that he and I are going to town to check out the marina there. We find a spot that will work for us and has decent electrical hook up. We will make due until tomorrow.
Back to LaChelle and putter around the rest of the day.
The next day we arrive at the marina and dock up. This was not planned to stay here for so long, but we had no choice now that the generator was down and out. The good thing was tho that we were free to roam and come and go as we please. And did I ever take advantage of that.
On one of my walks I noticed a sign for Moms Bakery with an arrow pointing to the left hung on a tree. The odd thing was, the was no building of any sort. I figured it must have burned or met another ill fate. The next day I walked by again on my way to a different internet cafe and low and behold, Mom's Bakery was there!
Mom bakes at home and drives the shop to her spot near the tree. : )
Let me tell you that Mom has some great stuff !!! I bought some rum cake, coconut bread and some other goodies. They did not last long.
The next installment.............here come the boys!