Saturday, January 9, 2016

Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas

Double rainbow over Black Sound, Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas
   Even though weather has been less than desirable it is somewhat a relief to be settled in the protection of Black Sound in Green Turtle Cay, Abaco. It has been extremely windy for days with gradient wind in the high 20's with gusts to 30 and above. A rare Derecho inflicted winds from 50-over 100 mph in the Exuma Cays a few days ago. Boats lost anchors and chain and many sustained damage from being cast ashore.
 
A serious game of double 12 dominoes in
process aboard Simple Life. No TV, no internet...



The Loyalist Monument at Green Turtle Cay celebrating
those who were loyal to England during the Revolutionary
War between the States and England.
Photo by Joe Boulay

Joe checking the menu at The Wrecking Tree Restaurant where he remembered having the best conch burgers ever during our visit in 2004.
(they were just as good in 2016)
     A few days ago, a short walk ashore reacquainted us with the small settlement of New Plymouth. It's the only settlement on the island. We last visited here in 2004. It seems not much has changed. Things still move slowly here on Green Turtle Cay. The Batelco station is opened one day a week on Thursday. Joe waited in a long line with everyone else in the settlement to buy a SIM card for our phone. At least we have have intermittent Wifi for communication. Joe was able to call his mom after we'd been here for more than a week.

     Last year there were so many weather fronts and so few crossings during January that we made the decision this year to cross whenever the opportunity was positive. Our crossing from Lake Worth was relatively tranquil in the sense that the seas were benign, there was enough wind to motor sail at 6.5 knots and we even sailed at times for hours with no engine. The entire trip took 30+ hours. Lake Worth and the Abacos were not our usual choice for crossing at this time of year, but with the unpredictable weather patterns from El Niño we began questioning "What is usual or normal anymore? Take what you get and go with it."

The teak in the main salon oiled and beautiful.
This is our dining table in the folded position.
The Dickinson fireplace is mounted next to it. 
My Nissan Thermal Slow Cooker
in the galley. Meatballs & sauce ready
in six hours.
     Boat projects that have been neglected for months have become priority since we have been aboard due to weather. Much needed interior teak oiling has become my manifesto. Each day I work on a specific section. Joe has taken another look at the AIS installation and made modifications. This morning I cooked a large pot of meatballs, sausages and homemade sauce with fresh basil, oregano and Italian parsley from my onboard garden at 10:00 AM. The contents were transferred to my Nissan Thermal Slow Cooker for the remainder of the afternoon. This is a wonderful addition to any boaters cookware since no electricity is needed. Dinner will be served at 6:00 PM. Joe also set up our rain catcher since 2-3 inches of rain are forecast tomorrow. So far, we've captured 5 gallons with intermittent rain showers. We'll see what tomorrow brings.

The beach at Gillum Bay where we enjoy beach combing for
sanddollars and sea biscuits.
Joe equipped with backpack, snorkel & mask
enjoying the beach at Green Turtle Cay.
     For some reason the crossing seemed to settle us. We have arrived. We have crossed and the anxiety that accompanies the crossing has subsided. Now we will explore, beach comb, swim, snorkel and fish. There are no plans now. No calendar, no place we have to be. It feels good. This is why we sail the Bahamas and for now Green Turtle Cay is home.


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