Approaching George Town under sail and making power
We finally reached Elizabeth Harbor. That’s the anchorage in George Town, the main town (400 residents) in the Exumas island chain, where dozens of cruisers congregate in the winter months. With its own daily radio net and a calendar of activities that could rival that of a summer camp, George Town is its own world, especially when compared to the more remote islands farther North. Here you can participate in the daily beach volley ball clinics, learn yoga or join the beach choir, all without leaving the comfort of a snug harbor. Thanks to this great community you can count on the help of other experienced cruisers, should you be missing a part or need advice on your next passage. Also, as you can imagine, for a boat of my age and size, that’s a lot of new friends to play with in just one place!
But first, let me tell you about these past few days on our way down the Exumas. After leaving Allens Cays we spent a couple of nights in Highborne Cay, where we could safely sit out a strong front that was approaching from the North. Thanks to their strong internet connection, we were able to send some emails, update our Facebook status and of course, videochat with the family on Skype.
We also took some time to go for a few hikes and discover an island with some interesting marina guests and its own sense of humor. Check out the video below and see it with your own eyes.
Find more videos like this on SeaKnots
Our stay at Highborne also provided a great opportunity to meet the folks at other boats like Snow Bird, Mayakoda, Serenity, Trinity and Indigo. Friends we’re bound to meet again further down the island chain. We find that we are always encountering the same boats as we proceed South. Since most boats come from Florida only when the weather in the Gulf Stream is settled, perhaps we all crossed on the same weather window so I guess you could call us “the class of 2009, window two”
After Highborne, we took a swim in our computer wallpaper. Yes. You read that right. Let me explain: since first visiting these islands with Michael and Daniel on S/V Splendido in 2007, our laptop’s wallpaper has been an amazing shot of Butterfly beach, by the Warderick Wells in the Land and Sea Park, with its turquoise waters as seen from the dinghy.
Well, this week we finally crossed the path we followed on Splendido and returned to the place we’d been dreaming of ever since.
This time, we shared our visit with Kevin and Sharon from S/V Serenity and Jim and Betsy who hosted a Super Bowl party aboard Feelin’ Lucky with home made nachos and margaritas to die for! The following night we corresponded with some Spanish wine, olives and breadsticks accompanied with some live music and ended up having a memorable evening under the stars.
Next up was Little Farmers, a settlement of just over 50 residents established by a freed slave called Chrisanna. We picked up a mooring from Little Jeff (apparently not so little anymore) and took the dinghy ashore to explore. At first it was a bit intimidating because we were the only cruisers walking around a small town filled with kids playing in the streets and chickens wandering around freely. But then we stumbled into a local tavern called the Ocean Cabin with an interesting approach to business hours.
As soon as we walked in we felt fully welcome and ended up meeting half the town. Terry Bain, the owner, proudly showed us the story of the island’s flag and played us a song about Little Farmer’s Cay that still rings in our minds.
The next day, we had a fantastic sail with 20-25 knots behind us but very little luck on the fishing department, as we didn’t catch anything other than seaweed.
Next week we’re taking a break from our progress South to host our first guests. One more week in the Exumas and then we’re on to new places again!
Stay tuned for our next update and in the meantime, please, remember to make that donation to charity: water you promised. Every dollar counts!
See previous posts here