It’s happened…we are salty again…we think that deserves a BIG Woo Hoo! It is so nice to be back in the water. This was the first time that we have stayed on the boat in a dirty, dry, dusty, buggy, yucky boatyard…oh, with the exception of when we first sailed to Key West and I was pregnant but I guess that I did not know any better then! Oh and wait, we stayed on the boat in the yard in Jamaica but somehow it was not as bad…must have been all of the Red Stripe that blurred my memories…lol! Anyhow we are out of there! Don’t get me wrong the yard was just what it was supposed to be a great place to store and work on our boat and it served it’s purpose. The nice thing about Saint Kitts Marine Works Boatyard is that they allow you to work on your own boat. Most other yards don’t allow this and you have to hire workers. Not only is that costly, who knows what the quality of their work might be like. We like to be certain that it is done right and that is why although painful we like to do the work ourselves.
Brian had his work cut out for him too. Last season we had trouble with a small leak in our starboard ama. We figured that it had happened when the travel lift had put us in the water. Brian did some underwater repairs as a quick fix but the spot needed further investigating. He opened up the crack and removed all of the weak wood and replaced it with marine plywood and light foam board making the spot stronger than ever before.
He also put some fiberglass tape on the bottoms of the hulls where the lift puts most of it’s pressure when taking us in and out of the water to give the other amas more strength. Now Moon is good and strong in these key areas.
We made our last few trips to the local supermarket to load up on some supplies that we knew would cost more on the islands and we were ready to splash down. Now I will not miss the boatyard one bit but I will really miss the beach out front that I have had so much fun beach combing. In my opinion it is one of the best in the Caribbean (for beach combing). I can’t wait to start making stuff from the things that I have found there to share with you all. The treasures that I found on that beach are just outstanding!
When Moon was finally wet again it was about mid afternoon and we wanted to make sure that all was good with her before we got too far away from the boatyard, just in case. We decided to motor up against the wind and waves to Whitehouse Bay. This is one of the few protected bays that St. Kitts has to offer and it happens to be a favorite of ours. It rained a monsoon on us that night and the winds howled but we were as snug as a bug. It was a great first night back on the water. All of the repairs held fine, no new cracks from the lift, engine was running just as it should and we were good to go.
At the crack of dawn we set sail for St. Maarten. Lucky us we were sailing downwind and it was a fast and uneventful ride. We arrived in Simpson Bay around four in the evening found a spot and it was anchors away. We’ve only anchored in this bay twice now and it was a bit rolly this time just like the last but we still got a pretty sound sleep.
In the morning it was the same as the day before we were up early. This time we got started about 5:30 because we had a longer sail ahead of us…about 80 miles. Downwind again it was like a sleigh ride, very comfortable and very fast. We made the trip in about 11 hours where we anchored right before sunset in the protection of North Sound, BVI’s right across from Sir Richard Branson’s own Necker Island.
After another night of a bumpy anchorage behind a reef but we were golden. Out of the open seas we were now in the protection of the British Virgin Islands and the rest of our trip was going to be nothing but bliss. Being away for so long I had forgotten how nice it was to sail here, anchorages galore and mostly protected waters. Not like sailing from island to island in the West Indies where you are exposed to the elements of what can be raging waves and seas. Here it is heaven. With not far to go and it being a downwind sail we were in our next destination in no time…Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas. That’s it…we have arrived…all is good. It is such a good feeling when everything works out as planned.
Finally time to get off of the boat and relax a bit. We spent some time walking around to get our land legs back after being on the boat for four days and we stocked up on supplies since we were on the “Big Island”. Next stop for us would be Culebra, Puerto Rico where we will be spending Christmas with our daughter Rachel.
As we sailed off to Culebra again it was another sleigh ride downwind and we have arrived home, or for what we will call home for now. We love this island. The people here are wonderful and it is one of our favorite places to be. I can really get used to this downwind sailing stuff…it is what sailing dreams are made of. I told Brian that we should only sail downwind from now on. He said that the only way to do that would be to sail around the world…hhhmmm…it’s a thought! Take care for all now. If we don’t write again before Christmas we wish you and yours the best. Remember to hug the one that you love and be thankful for all that you have and cherish what a beautiful world this is.