Well we are still laughing, loving and enjoying life on the sea but the last months have not been without their cloudy days! A couple of unfortunate incidents including dinghy damage for our friends, theft from Amoray and the sad news from home of the passing of a friend and neighbor at the lake and a dear friend’s mom. It is times like this we wish we were closer to home.
Here is an update to our recent journey.
More time on the beautiful island of Dominica proved to be very wet! There was a week with daily (and nightly) deluges. Morning runs were very soggy and an umbrella became a necessity anytime we left the boat. It was great for filling water tanks, washing and cleaning all the salt and grime from Amoray, however. So feeling a little like we were growing webbed feet we decided to move on and bid farewell to one of our absolute favourite islands.
Martinique is the next island to the south and our destination of Fort de France only about 50nm from Dominica was obviously not far enough away to escape the entrenched weather system stalled over the Windwards. We spent a few days exploring the city and dodging the showers. On our last day, I went ashore with friends and Lynn and I set off following careful instructions from a fellow cruiser on a bus ride and then 3 km walk to the trailhead for a hike to Didier Falls. Unfortunately we arrived at the trailhead to a newly installed, very large and scary looking “No Trespassing” sign with threats of 75,000 Euro fines. Meanwhile back on Amoray, Glen was scrubbing the decks and looked up to see 4 teenage boys attempting to steal our friend’s dinghy. Sadly, our dinghy was up on its davits, strapped in and the fuel tank removed so he had no quick access to shore to intercept. His yelling like a banshee from the bow did little to neither deter them nor attract help from others. It was only after they gunned the engine wrapping the 10mm stainless steel chain around the prop that the engine stalled, that they hopped out and took off. By the time Glen got to shore the culprits were long gone. Sad to say Ken and Lynn had to replace their prop, fuel line and gas tank due to damage but of course nothing is easy and with no props to be had on Martinique so off to St.Lucia they went for repairs.
We headed to another of our favourite anchorages on Martinique, St. Anne. The weather started to improve so we were able to do; more exploring, scrub the hull, polish stainless, the last of the French provisioning (champagne, olives, pate and cheeses) and enjoy some downtime too. After five days with clear skies and sunshine we then had unusual ocean swell move in that turned cooking, sleeping and doing much of anything challenging. We were definitely at a 9 on our 1-10 Mayreau scale of “rollies” so the next day we made a hasty exit to St.Lucia.
After spending 10 days exploring St. Lucia with Reid and Kathy we felt we had seen the best of the island. Our stop in Rodney Bay was planned so we could take part in the famous international Jazz Festival. The Festival happens over a 2 week period and we arrived for the last week. Carefully following the schedule we picked our daily events and travelled to several venues and enjoyed great music and vibes of the festival. We decided to splurge and buy tickets for the last day’s Mainstage events on Pigeon Island as there was a great line up of artists. We left Amoray at 1pm and returned about 9pm that evening. It was during this time that someone broke into our home through the forward hatch. They made off with our computer and accessories, IPad, Glen’s wallet, pepper spray and Glen’s wrapped birthday presents from the Nike store! So began our week of chaos… attempting to file a police report, cancel credit cards, change every password I can think of, buy a new computer, celebrate Glen’s birthday (with new presents), deal with insurance and now sit and wait for the arrival of new credit cards. We did move from the bay into the marina so we could get good internet in order to make phone calls etc. Our friends aboard Silverheels III came to our rescue within minutes of hearing the news. They were about an hour sail out on their way south when they turned around and came to lend us a laptop to use… not sure how we would have managed without this!!!!
As we rebuild our electronic life we recall the importance of regular backups of the computer…. Hmmmm February didn’t seem so long ago…. Until I realize I have lost my electronic journal and five photo scrapbooks – alas.. life goes on. So all in all, lessons learned and blessings counted we are still enjoying the journey. We, and Amoray are safe, we truly appreciate what an incredible community of friends we have become a part of in the cruising world and look forward to sunny skies as we sail south to Grenada.