Trying to do a picture intensive blog with a slow-speed Internet connection is frustrating. So frustrating, in fact, that I haven’t posted much of anything lately. I’ve got a bunch of neat photographs, but they’ll have to wait until I find myself someplace other than aboard the boat. Til then, muy amigos, it’s all words.
We’ve spent the last few days, well, quite a few days, actually, in Antigua tied up alongside the dock at Falmouth Harbour Marina. I have mixed feelings about this place, thanks to some ancient, unpleasant memories from a long-gone relationship and a lunatic boatowner. This time around Antigua seems a little greener and a little calmer. Granted, it’s the very tail end of the season here, there are hardly any boats left, and most everything’s closed, but perhaps I like this crowded little island a bit more.
Part of that fondness is due to a day tour I went on with one of the owners and her petite entourage. We had a nice tour, swam with the stingrays at Stingray City, which, while it ‘s a a cruise-ship passenger bedeviled tourist trap, was a pretty cool cruise-ship passenger bedeviled tourist trap–great big platters of swimming gristle schooling around, bumping like you friendly dogs–and had a wonderful lunch at Long Bay followed by an hour-and-a-half snorkel. I’ve never done stuff like this in Antigua before, and I’m glad I had the opportunity to do so.
The rest of our time here has been spent toiling, removing three huge sails (big boat=big sails) getting them repaired, and then putting them back aboard, performing maintenance, and fixing things (again, big boat=lots of things to fix, all the time). It’s pretty hot here, and the sun just beats down on you like a physical presence. Lots of water, cold drinks, and shade-seeking.
We have a final sail test tomorrow (Tuesday, May 11), then on the following day we head back to Sint Maarten, where we will once again participate in the challenging thrill of loading air conditioning compressors which have been repaired back into the boat. Lots of fun (really) with halyards, knots, tools, and plentiful use of epithets. Manly sailor stuff to be sure. I take great delight in working with the crew and the various contractors we have aboard and am continually amazed at how well we all get along and how much good work gets done every day.
We’ll head for the Panama Canal (yes, folks, more pictures from Panama) in mid June, then on to more fun with aircon compressors in Costa Rica before we settle into the seriously big fun of trips to the Cocos Islands, Galapagos, and, eventually Cape Horn, the latter about the time when Winter begins wrapping its icy fingers around New England.
‘Nuff words for now. More pics soon, I promise.
Your stories are nearly as vivid as your pictures. Keep ’em coming! – R