And I'm still in George Town. I was going to leave, honestly! But my friend, Clay, of s/v Revel, asked why I was leaving. I didn't have a good reason except that I had been here several weeks. But with the regatta over and 2/3 of the boats gone this is a whole different kind of place. Clay suggested that things here in GT were just getting down to 'normal' and I should experience it for a while. Besides, said he, there's always another cold front coming along every few days.
So I'll stay a bit longer. How long? I have no idea.
16 Mar 09
George Town, Exuma, Bahama Islands
Just another quiet day aboard the good ship Galena. The final event of the George Town Cruiser's Regatta is tonight. At Regatta Park in George Town, proper, is a variety show. Many of the cruising boats have moved over to Kidd Cove and that has left a lot of "good" parking spots over in front of Volleyball Beach. So I moved over to there this afternoon.
The weather looked like it might not cooperate with the planners: we had intermittent showers all day. But just in time for the variety show the sky cleared up.
The variety show was interesting. Many of the same acts that performed at the opening show for the regatta were there. Plus a few nicely done local acts/performances. The only bad act was when Isabelle of s/v Cassiopeia sang a song which turned out to be a 'Hate Bush, Love Obama" political diatribe.
One of the local events was a school group singing the Bahamian National Anthem
I met Margo's mom. Margo is one of the bartenders at the Chat 'n Chill on Volleyball Beach. It's always interesting to meet people out of their normal context.
Leo and Tony (s/v Bimini Dancer) were there. I sold them my copy of Bruce Van Sant's Gentleman's Guide to Passages South. Which, as every cruisers knows, you don't leave home without. Especially when heading South. Later I find out that these two guys started the web-based, virtual reality site named SecondLife.com. Interesting folks you meet out here, huh?
Leo and Tony (s/v Bimini Dancer) and Frank (s/v Local Knowledge) were checking out the festivities
17 Mar 09
s/v Moonlight Serenade finally arrived! Sarah, Bill, and Sheila (Bill's sister) pulled in and anchored nearby. I was actually waiting for them to arrive before I moved on. Now they are here and I'll stay for a while and party with them.
s/v Moonlight Serenade anchored off Volleyball Beach, right next to Galena
I went to the invitation-only St Patrick's Day bash on the Flip-Flop-Shop Beach. Good party put on each year by Toby and Donna of s/v Cariba. Except this year they are 'working' on m/v Duchess.
We had Tammy (s/v Bodett) perform as the lead of the Sweet Potato Queens. My favorite songs were her renditions of: "Don't wear panties to a party," and "I could get over him if I could get under you."
18 Mar 09
Coffee in the morning aboard s/v Moonlight Serenade. It's been a long time since I've done that with these guys. It's nice to have such good friends back in the anchorage. I don't mean to disparage my other friends. Dennis and Bettye on Son of a Sailor are also some of my dearest friends. But Sarah and Bill have been out of my circle for quite a while and it's nice to be back with them.
After a few games of volleyball I ended up on s/v Son of a Sailor for dinner and drinks.
19 Mar 09
Texas Hold' em at the St Francis Resort and I came in 3rd. I won $25 and felt great about it. Sarah joined me there.
24 Mar 09
Not much happening now that the regatta is over. Many, many boats have left. We've gone from a high of about 350 boats a couple of weeks ago to only 150 or so now. The place is really emptying out.
Texas hold' em again and I had rotten luck. But for the first time Jo, Tony's wife played, too. I had been after Tony to bring her along ever since we had met a couple of weeks ago.
Also talked with Paul. He and his friends are on a couple of schooners that are coming down from Alaska and heading way south. I've heard him play guitar and he is very, very good. He says he's been playing since he was 10.
Paul and friend after dropping out of the final table at Texas Hold' em at St Francis Resort, GT
I'm starting to really want to leave. I'm not sure why (especially since I'm actually typing this up on 1 Apr and am still in GT!). But on 24 March I wanted to leave and head down the Jumento's and then over to Miami.
My buddy Lee (s/v Krasna) is talking about heading north soon. He want's crew and is looking for someone who is willing to wait until he gets the urge to leave and then sail with him up through the Abaco's and to St Augustine, FL. With no definite schedule he's having no takers.
My buddy, Lee, of s/v Krasna at the Chat 'n Chill bar
Jillian wants to go but has to be in Georgia in a couple of weeks. Susan would go with him, but also has to be in the States on a date certain.
Jillian watching the volleyball games. She needs a ride back to the States.
Sarah and Bill and Sheila invited me to join them on a climb up Monument Hill. I'd never actually climbed the hill so I gladly went along. The view was excellent! But it didn't really translate well to photos. At least not for me.
Here's a shot of Volleyball Beach from the monument
Sheila, Bill, and Sarah on the bench at the top of monument hill
Oh, the monument itself is impressive. It's just a big concrete marker used to for navigation back in the 'old days' before GPS.
I went to town and tried to call Frank at the Pax River Marina but just left him a voice mail. I guess I'll just give up and when I get there I'll park on the bulkhead and walk into the office asking where my slip is. If there isn't one available for me I'll simply go across the river to Solomon's and anchor in the creek.
27 Mar 09
Been playing a lot of volleyball and have reached a plateau. I'm not getting any better and am probably getting worse compared to everyone else.
While resting at the Chat n Chill Nicki came over to say 'bye.' She's one of the Future Cruisers where were visiting grandparents down here. She said she'll be back next year when she'll actually be 18 years old.
My friend Nicki, the 'future cruiser,' at the Chat n Chill
We had another dance at the Chat n Chill with Rockin' Ron (s/v Sea Dancer) playing DJ. A very nice time with everyone bouncing around to the oldies that we oldies love.
Sarah and Bill of Moonlight Serenade at the dance
At the dance Kendal and Margo were jamming behind the bar
Kendal the bartender at Chat n Chill is getting down to the music
Margo, the other bartender at Chat n Chill was trying not to get down with the music, but failed
Even by buddy, Lee, of s/v Krasna, finally got the courage up to dance... and with a lady, no less!
Lee is... "Dancing"?? He never dances. I guess he was inspired
28 Mar 09
I moved Galena over to Kidd Cove for water, trash, and a few groceries. I also bought another 6 liters of rum. As I was storing the bottles away I found one bottle in a locker that had broken. That explains the strange smell in that locker for the past week or so. I don't know how it broke. Galena has been sitting at anchor and the break was such that the bottom of the bottle just broke away. Strange.
I had gone to the police station to support their luncheon called a 'Steak-out.' For $10 I had ribs, slaw, and the special Mac and Cheese they make here. And a beer, of course.
A bunch of us cruisers were standing in front of the Straw Market talking boat stuff when suddenly Jo walked up. What a very pleasant surprise! She said she was in town and had driven by and noticed me. She parked and came back to say 'hi.' We chatted a bit and she asked if I wanted to see their little project. Sure, said I.
Jo absconding with me (Notice she's driving from the wrong side of the car? They do that here.)
I joked about her spiriting me away to have her way with me. And we drove to her house on the other side of the island. She and Tony are developing an 8-lot residential property named, Sunset Bluff. Tony designed the place and when they had told me about it before I had had no idea what a large project it was. We walked down to the shore and there was Tony working his butt off. Tony was pleased to see me and we all went back to the house for a beer. But Tony was anxious to get back to work so I only stayed a little while. Jo gave me a ride back to town and we had a very nice talk on the way.
See? Tony was happy to see me.
Jo in her 'backyard' showing a bit of the natural 'iron shore' which is what the locals call the rock below the steps in the picture
Looking the other way, the soon-to-be bar and more walkways in what will be the common area of this residential resort setting that Tony is building
What Bahamian home would be complete without a Junkinoo head dress?
30 Mar 09Again, just another day of reading, basket weaving, volleyball, and poker. I can't believe I get to live like this!
31 Mar 09
I awoke to see s/v Poco Loco anchored behind me. Jerry and his dog Sparky were at Lake Worth, FL, when I went through there in '07. And when I went through there in '08 he was still there. He had spent the entire winter in Florida. Now he was finally in the Bahamas. We had a nice little visit.
Tonight we have 'movie-night' aboard Moonlight Serenade. We squeezed in Wayne and Isabelle (Cassiopeia), Lee (Krasna), Clark (Seabbatical), Me, and of course Sarah and Bill. We had a nice time.
1 Apr 09 I moved Galena to Monument Beach for the grand (re)opening of the Peace and Plenty Hamburger Shop on the beach. Toby (Duchess) had asked the cruisers to support the opening day. And we did. Lot's of cruisers and lots of beer.
I left early to get back to Galena. I moved her across to Kidd Cove so I could attend the Open Mike night at the Peace and Plenty Resort. I'm told that James Taylor's brother, Hugh, often attends. And that the jam sessions are something to write home about. I'm writing this while waiting to go to town. More to follow....
OK, back from the P&P. I bumped into several friends there. Of course Bill and Sarah were there. As were Clark an a couple of ladies who were visiting parents on s/v Cgull Seeker. Wayne (m/v My Sharona) ferried over Sharon and Jim (s/v Insatiable) for dinner and an evening of fun.
Clark (s/v Seabbatical) and the ladies from s/v Cgull Seeker.
Sharon, Wayne and Jim enjoying the music at the Peace and Plenty Jam session
And I was pleasantly surprised to see Constance and Butch there. They thought, as did Jo and Tony, that I had left. But we all had a good time catching up.
Constance was happy to see me again; as was her husband, Butch, who was playing in the band that night.
I promised to take Jo and Tony (Sunset Bluff) for a sail Friday. I need to get some munchies so I can play the proper host. A few beers and sodas and fruit should do. I also need to clean up the boat! Guests!
Poker at St Francis Resort tonight. I came in 7th out of about 37 players. Out of the money by two. But still a good showing and a seat at the final table is always a win in my book.
I'll be leaving here whenever I leave here. We'll see how it goes...