|Sunset at Grand Anse Beach, Grenada|
Last week we said goodbye to Hanna. After two months on Eventyr, she travelled back to the states to resume normal life. We had a great last day together in Prickly Bay, Granada and she flew back to Miami on the same flight with Glen and Pam, another couple who sail an Island Packet (Blue Pearl) whom we met back up in St. Lucia. Hanna complained upon her return to Texas that she unconsciously attempted to chuck an apple core out the window, but aside from that, was adjusting normally to life on land. We miss her greatly, although we keep finding fun notes she stashed thanking us and wishing us well.
|Saying goodbye to Hanna, Glen, and Pam|
Dana and I took a couple days to clean Eventyr and move to the beautiful boutique marina Le Phare Bleu. I even found a surf break in Prickly Bay to bust out my sorely underused surfboard. After I got in a fair surf session and Eventyr was looking squeaky clean, Mom arrived. She’s been looking for the right opportunity to join us, and Grenada seemed like the perfect spot. Dana and I had a whole itinerary planned for the week she was aboard, and everything went smoothly (for a change). Our first day was spent snorkeling, hiking, and relaxing at the tranquil marina. Dana and I wanted Mom to ease into her week on the adventure.
|Paddling out from dinghy to surf break in Prickly Bay|
|Hot hike! Notice my new (via Mom) UConn tee|
|Snorkeling from Eventyr|
|Relaxing at Le Phare Bleu pool|
Our second day was spent with Cutty, the taxi/tour driver, touring the whole island of Grenada. At 11 by 21 miles, it is small, but with a wide diversity of landscapes. Grenada is called the spice island, because so many fragrant fruits and spices grow here. Cutty stopped the van on the side of the road numerous times to pick us mangoes, cocoa, coffee, cashews, lemon grass, nutmeg, cinnamon, bananas, and a wide variety of fruits I never heard of. We were in awe of the flowering trees and bushes everywhere! We went into the rainforest and did a short hike to a crater lake. We posed with Mona Monkeys, who came out of the jungle when Cutty offered up fresh bananas. We toured a nutmeg processing plant and a small organic chocolate factory. Lunch was served at a rum distillery where they still make rum with the same equipment from the late 1800s. A large archaic water wheel turned a conveyor belt and crushed the juice out of fresh sugar cane. The dried sugar cane fired several bubbling pots that condensed the juice before it was fermented and distilled. The product was a 150 plus proof white rum that nearly knocked our socks off! We spent the rest of the day winding through hilly roads back to our marina.
|Acres of nutmeg|
|Boiling cauldrons of cane juice destined for rum|
|Beautiful setting of Rivers Antoine Rum Distillery|
After a couple pleasant days at the marina, it was time for mom to get a taste of the “real” adventure. We left the safe and secluded marina and took off into the open ocean for our next anchorage. Ok, so we took it easy on mom that first sail and just motored 4 miles around a point to the next bay. We spent two nights anchored in a calm bay behind Hog Island, where many sailors call home. Mom, Dana, and I cruised around the bays on our dinghy and spent a bit of time on a palm tree-lined beach before attending the weekly barbeque at the generator-powered Rogers Bar. This beach bar, on Hog Island, is accessible by dinghy and cruisers and locals alike hang out, listen to reggae, and enjoy local seafood grilled to perfection. Like I said, many sailors call this bay home because they anchor here year-round. One of the live aboards invited mom to their daily water noodle aerobics session the next morning. Upon listening to the cruiser’s net (a daily broadcast from and by sailors in the vicitnity), Mom was called out by name. After announcing that day’s water noodle aerobics time and place, the friendly woman reminded, “Pat from Connecticut, we have your noodle ready.” When we were done laughing we hauled up the anchor and headed on to our next anchorage. No time for noodling.
|Exploring the bay by dinghy|
|Seeking the shade of a palm tree on Calvigny Island beach|
|Leisure time activities aboard|
Having eased into the adventure, Mom got a taste of some true sailing. After getting out into the rambunctious open ocean, Dana and I raised the main and jib, cut the engine and sailed 11 miles to our next stop. Although the seas were relatively lively, we were on a comfortable down wind point of sail, so we moved quickly and smoothly through the water. I caught mom gripping the rail tightly at one point, but she assured me she wasn’t too scared. After an hour, she seemed very at ease and we chatted all the way around the island to our next anchorage. I think she could get used to this cruising life!
Our final two days were spent in the bustling main town of St. George's. We visited an old fort, walked the streets in the blazing midday sun, and fended off hawkers at the spice market. Mom got a taste of the quiet secluded cruising life, along with our sometimes busy, hectic shopping trips. We had one last relaxing sunset drink on Grand Anse beach for our last night at anchor. Last night, we stayed at another lovely marina in St. George and Mom treated Dana and I to a nice dinner out. We prepared most our meals on board during the week, to give Mom a feel for how we’ve lived the past six-and-a-half months. I think she enjoyed all of Dana’s delicious concoctions (including the pain killers and dark and stormies).
|View from Fort George in St. George's|
|Final dark and stormy on Eventyr with Mom|
|Dinner with Mom|
This morning we bid Mom an early morning farewell. We’ll see her again in a little over a month in San Francisco for my cousin Derek’s wedding (Dana and I will fly back and forth to the states for the event). It was great having Mom on board and I hope she enjoyed her little taste of the adventure. Dana and I are alone on Eventyr for a while. We almost don’t know what to do with ourselves. Our next deadline is Tobago in late May for a visit from my friends since elementary school, Otis, Jon, and Beth. Between now and then, Dana and I will have to find a way to keep ourselves occupied and wait for a weather window to make the 82-mile trip further south.