Fun at the Bequia music fest

Friday night and there was a big crowd of us in the Whaleboner for dinner…. before we decamped into safari buses to take us to the concert. Arriving at De Reef I was a bit surprised by all the security and police in attendance – but not going to complain about that! Felt very very safe…. The stage was set when we arrived and we had to buy drinks tickets – no cash over the bar. Went and got a supply and were very pleasantly surprised to find that beer was only EC $5 each… that’s about £1.25!

All set up and ready to go

Well… it was supposed to start at 8.30 pm but being on island time we were not surprised when it was nearer 9.15 pm …and then there were the welcome / opening speeches including Basil (of Basil’s Bar, Mystique fame). Finally – time for the music! The crowd was arriving, although disappointed to see that this was largely made up of cruisers and holidaymakers with very few locals. Perhaps the tickets were a bit expensive at £15 a head???  Anyway there is always an exception or two – and there was one creepy looking rasta man who was trying to pull the oldest white single women he could find… Yuck – and they were falling for it – almost queuing up to dance with him!!!!

Creepy rasta man

The band came on and we were entertained royally – starting slowly and they quickly increased the tempo – and the crowd responded. Everyone was dancing and we all had a really good time. The musicians were fantastically talented and all did a little solo with swapping out of different instruments and singers…. It was an amazing night and certainly one to remember. At midnight our safari bus turned up again to take us back to town, where we recovered our dinghies and went back to our respective boats. As an aside, we weren’t worried about leaving Morphie alone – although there have been issues in this bay before – because the SVG Coastguard have been doing regular patrols throughout the night and we are securely locked down and alarmed up. Anyway – pretty tired and so to bed.

Music Fest 1

Music Fest 2

Music Fest 3

Enjoying Music Fest

Music Fest 4

Music Fest 5Music Fest 6

Saturday morning and we had a lazy start – and the wind picked up and the rain came down. Hard!!!  Winfield came by and prepped for the next coat of varnish but, as last year, this got rained off so we had a nice chat with him anyway…. The squalls came through but by lunchtime the weather was much better so we went ashore to the beach with Ruth and Dan.  Arriving at the dinghy dock and this German guy comes out shouting at us because we had locked on in the middle of the pack – and he thought we should have gone at the end as the last arrivals!?!  Never seen that anywhere in the regs!  Anyway….we couldn’t have done that if we had wanted to because his stern anchor meant that it was too shallow to come the other side of him. Well that didn’t appease him – he was absolutely furious and went away muttering.

Winfield sitting out the weather

We were going to leave it but decided that he was so mad he could do damage to our dinghies so we unlocked them, drove off and beached them further down…. Whilst walking the beach there was a cute little crab shuffling around – although not sure I would fancy being nipped by that big claw!

Cute crab

Settling into a bobbing session – the heavens opened – but we were already wet so hey we carried on…. Dan was concerned about the German guy and being much more diplomatic than us, he went to Jack’s bar to find him and buy him a beer so that there were no hard feelings….. and apparently they were best buddies in about five minutes flat!

Couldn’t stay too long as we had arranged to meet Glen and Pam from Blue Pearl – finally! – for sundowners, so got back to Morphie, tidied ourselves us, and went ashore. Had a really nice time catching up with them and meeting their guests….whilst enjoying a stormy sunset and the comical sight of two young lads doing a pizza delivery!

Blue Pearl crew

Pizza delivery!

Stormy sunset

Heading back around 8pm and we spotted another boat had anchored in front of us in our absence – 30 feet in front of our bow to be exact!  And he was way too close to the other boat in front of us as well – certainly not enough swinging room for all of us. So Richard got out the very bright LED torch, sat on the bow, and illuminated the cockpit of the offending boat. The guy got the message….came on deck….looked around and picked up anchor and moved. Phew!  During the night the wind howled and howled…… and we didn’t get a lot of sleep.

Sunday morning up very early looking around as the wind has not let up – and there are a few boats dragging or dancing around madly on their anchors.  Evensong have picked up and moved because a guy got too close to them and we have one sitting right off our bow again – he certainly wasn’t there when we went to sleep. We spoke to him and he said that he knew he was dragging but was waiting for his crew to wake up! Oh well…. we made a pot of tea and sat watching. Then his friends got up and they all sat in the cockpit chatting whilst every gust was bringing them closer… So Richard very politely asked them whether they were picking up their anchor or whether they were just going to watch it all morning!?! They got the message… and were out of there very soon after. This continued throughout the morning but finally, around lunchtime, it looked like everyone was reset and we were confident enough to go out to the music fest afternoon event.

We met Pat, Lucie, Dan and Ruth on the main dock and got another safari bus to the venue. There was a very different vibe to this event – much more a family day out with loads of locals setting up little concessions along the road with BBQs going and it was hard to see through the smoke at times…. Inside the venue there were loads of local people as well as cruisers and holidaymakers including Winfield and his wife and a number of other people that we recognised from town. Oh yes, and the creepy rasta man was there on the prowl again wearing exactly the same as he had on Friday night. Double yuck!

Music fest day 6

Big smoky!

There was a mixed genre of music – from pan to blues to rock to soca to country and western. We thoroughly enjoyed ourselves again…. particularly the chicken wings we got from one of the local roadside vendors!  We headed back to Morphie around 7pm and had an early night, not even bothering with any dinner….. Again during the night the wind howled, and howled, and howled. The forecast has changed and it looks like we are going to have this for a while. Not much sleep again…..

Music Fest day 1

Music fest day 2

Music Fest day 3

Music fest day 4

Music fest day 5

Monday morning and it was raining hard…. and the wind was howling up to 35 knots…. and the sea is very rough, with a marine advisory out on the local forecast. Boats are moving every which way and we have had a few more dragging incidents – luckily we are holding really well. Winfield will probably not be here to do that varnishing today!!! We were booked to go diving but really didn’t want to leave Morphie in the conditions so deferred to Tuesday and we are stayed on board most of the day.  Late afternoon it had calmed down a bit so we went ashore for sundowners and there was a big crowd of us in Tommys.  Enjoyed a couple of hours socialising – although disappointed to find out another boat had been broken into in the anchorage during the evening.  There was another spectacular sunset to enjoy being going back aboard for a quiet night. The wind picked up again but we had a better night – but we both would love to be able to sleep through rather than this three hours on/off cycle that we have got ourselves into!

Stunning Bequia sunset

Tuesday morning and we had a leisurely start getting our dive stuff together and then heading in. Dive one was pretty busy with loads of divers – and we buddied up with Dan as Ruth didn’t fancy it. This was a wreck dive and we came across a tug boat in about 60 feet of water, followed by a dead yacht….. and then onto the reef to finish off. Enjoyed it but was a bit disconcerted when the divemaster took Richard and Dan away from me to surface because they were getting low on air leaving me following the diveleader, but no buddy….. Oh well – not the best arrangement and didn’t feel particularly comfortable for some reason. Coming back ashore we met Ruth who had organised us pizza and drinks for the interval – fantastic! Then back out for our second dive and this was back to Devil’s Table……which is a muck dive to start with digging around in the grass and sand to look for little critters – and found the pink frog fish again! – and then onto the reef. Love this site and thoroughly enjoyed it – particularly the octopus and the colourful coral. Made better by the fact that there was only the three of us with a diveleader so loads of room and lots of fun with the camera – Dan does a pretty good job!

Dive 1

Dive 2

Dive 3Dive 4

Dive 5Dive 6Dive 7

Dive 8

After diving we headed into the beach for sundowners as we wanted to see Faye and Paul – the local couple who have set up coolers on the beach – as we are hoping to organise a beach party with BBQ. Mission accomplished and back on board for a quiet night, pretty tired. And again the wind picked up and we had a broken sleep pattern, which is starting to get on my nerves!

Wednesday morning and we had a party planning meeting on Evensong – all sorted, just got to invite the others now – and we buzz around the anchorage to talk to people. Getting back towards Morphie we realise that Blue Pearl – who were anchored behind us – have left. Damn, missed them!   Luckily I’m sure we’ll catch up with them later on.

We then head into town to buy some groceries as Dan and Ruth are dining onboard Mophie this evening.   Back on board we clean up the boat ready to receive and get the food preparation done – an hour or so lazing about and cleaning ourselves up and then they arrive.   Have a really nice evening chatting, laughing, eating and drinking.  The wind died down during the night – although it did rain hard – so we had a better night’s sleep….  At last!

This morning – Thursday – and we are having a leisurely time doing some shopping, breakfast ashore and catching up on the internet at the Fig Tree.  Last year a big storm here in Bequia wrecked the fig tree and this year they have taken down the rest of it and carved some figures into it…..   Really impressive….   Oh yes and we have some pretty big neighbours in the anchorage!!    Probably won’t do much else today…..

Remains of the Fig TreeNeighbours

Bye for now





Bye for now



Union Island to Bequia

Jobs done, blog done, and time to relax…. Later that afternoon we had a couple of beers bobbing at Bollheads and enjoyed the water. Quiet night on board.


Chatham Bay anchorage

Saturday morning we went into Aqua for internet – wasn’t working as the power was down. So they started up the generator and we waited…. and waited…. and ate chocolate cake – yum!! – and drank coffee…. and waited…. To no avail – so we had to abandon the idea. It feels quite weird not to have access to anything at all – even 3G on my Kindle doesn’t work! Oh well….never mind.

View of Chatham Bay anchorage from Aqua

Chocolate cake

Later in the afternoon we met up with Patrick and Lucy (Illusions) and Chris and Linda (Troubadour) for a little beach bar pub crawl….. We started at Mr Pleasures where we were entertained by the man himself and Moses – and would have stayed longer but they ran out of beer! Next stop was to Sunset View …. and finally on to Bollheads, where we had left our dinghies. Fun time had by all followed by an early night on board.

Mr Pleasures and Moses

Sundowners at Sunset Bar

Sun going down at Chatham

Sunday we had a lazy day – really preparing to go to sea on Monday – and then went over to Troubadour for sundowners prior to going to Bollheads for dinner. Mr Pleasures and his merry men turned up to entertain us; great food by Tim as always, who was letting his hair down tonight; and even Chris got into the act by playing a few tunes… We had a good old fashioned sing song. What a fun evening! Sad farewells all round and back on board ready for an early start on Monday.

Tim letting his hair down

Chris and Linda

Band turned up

Last night in Chatham

Chris joined in

Monday and the forecast is for brisker winds than we envisaged when deciding to move on – but we are ready to go. So around 8am we poked our noses past the headland and hoisted the sails – heavily reefed – and headed off on the trip straight to Bequia, which is about 30 miles as the crow flies. Of course the wind is coming from the direction we want to go as usual – grrrr…. The seas were big, the currents were strong and the wind was blowing at 27 knots. We had a fantastic sail, making some great speeds, but we got relentlessly pushed away from the island by the waves and the current. Our tacks were pretty useless to get some more easting but we persevered. During our sail Richard shouted at me – look at that plane! It was a private jet coming very low over the sea straight at us – at only about 100 foot above the surface… Stomachs in mouths we watched him continuing to bear down on us at speed, he came behind us and circled around our bow, and then headed off to Mustique. So this was a deliberate buzzing! Phew – wasn’t expecting that…. and working class language was heard in the cockpit of Morphie as a result….. I really thought he was going to hit the top of the mast. Then Richard thought it could be ‘moves like Jagger’ on his way to the music festival???

Anyway, back to the sailing…. and eventually we had to decide what to do if we wanted to make it in before dark…. so ended up motoring the last five miles. Was a great day though and we covered 51 miles in total – were pretty salty by the time we arrived, but hey, who cares?!?!? We stayed aboard and enjoyed our first Bequia sunset before heading to bed very early, pretty shattered.

Stormy sunset tonight in Bequia

Tuesday morning we were up early and tuned into the cruisers net and heard that our friends Dan and Ruth, on Evensong, were here! Soooo excited…. we haven’t seen them since Martinique last year. So we quickly made arrangements to meet them on the beach for a bobbing session later in the afternoon while we got ourselves sorted out. Dinghy back in the water; outboard off the rail; stainless and wood washed down; beds changed; laundry done; into town for drinking vouchers and some fresh produce; and then to the beach. Phew! Princess Margaret beach was as beautiful as we remembered it and the water sparkling and blue. Bobbing and catching up was fun – with ‘odd’ rounds for us and ‘even’ rounds for them. We also met up with Ann and Ed from Windswept Dreams. We loved watching the stormy sunset coming through and probably stayed out a bit later on the beach than we should have. Going back to Morphie around 7 and we didn’t have a torch or had left any lights on – so finding her in this very crowded anchorage was a bit of a challenge, not to mention getting the boat unlocked! Lesson learnt…. and so early to bed after a quick dinner.

An Even round

Bobbing with Ruth and Dan

Richard getting a round in

Wednesday morning and Winfield came by – we had arranged to get our varnishing refreshed whilst here – so we agreed a price and he got the lads to come over to start rubbing down. Went into town for breakfast at Gingerbread – enjoying the views and the local birds who are looking for titbits….. then onto the tourism office to get info on the music festival and decided to buy tickets for Friday night – which is Dana Gillespie and the London Blues Band plus guest artistes from the Mustique Blues Festival.

Admiralty Bay, BequiaLooking for scraps

Also went into the dive shop and organised a shallow dive for Thursday to get us back into the swing of things. Whilst out and about we bumped into Glen and Pam from Blue Pearl – at last! We have been missing them by hours / days ever since we arrived back in Grenada. They were heading out to St Vincent to pick up friends, but are coming back to Bequia so hope to catch up with them properly soon!

Wednesday afternoon we went bobbing again with Dan and Ruth and were met by Patrick and Lucy from Illusions who had pulled in the day before. Was another lovely way to spend the afternoon – followed by a great dinner onboard Evensong, where Ruth was trying out local recipes. Pretty authentic results too!

Ruth and Dan on Evensong

Thursday morning and Winfield finished the preparation work and got the first coat of varnish on. We are sorting stuff out to go diving and realise that Richard’s computer has a dead battery – now we had a replacement kit but do you think we could find it???? No….. so a quick trip to town and he managed to get a battery so we went through the delicate process of replacing it. This is always a worry as getting it wrong means that it floods and dies on the next dive. Kitted up, went ashore, and joined the boat. Loads of divers on board but most of them were students doing qualification dives so Ruth, Dan, Richard and I were with the divemaster on our own.

Kitting up

Lovely shallow dive starting at 10 feet off the boat and then meandering down a sandy bottom towards the reef which drops down to about 45 feet – Dan and Ruth had some equipment failures but managed anyway…. Great dive – we saw two frogfish which is such a treat, but sadly couldn’t find the seahorse that lives in this area. There were loads of spotted eels, cleaner shrimps, schools of parrots and triggers and the usual assortment of critters – along with spectacular coloured coral and large sponges…. Just beautiful – and we had over an hour underwater which wasn’t bad for the first dive of the season!

Dive 1

Dive 2

Dive 3

Dive 4

Dive 5

Dive 6

Back to shore, organised more diving for Monday, and back quickly to Morphie to clean up before heading into town. We enjoyed a spectacular sunset and sundowners at the Whaleboner with Dan and Ruth followed by dinner at Gingerbread. Pretty tired so we didn’t go next door to the Frangipani which was kicking off the music festival with steel pan band music – not really our favourite thing. So back on board – this time with lights! – and so to bed.

Busy anchorage

Sundowners at Whalebone bar

Beautiful sunset in Bequia

It is Friday now and we are heading into town for the internet. During the night a Windjammer cruise ship has come in along with loads more boats – we have never seen so many boats in an anchorage! Looking forward to tonight and nothing much planned otherwise.

Bye for now.



Enjoying life in Union Island and Petit St Vincent

Saturday afternoon we returned to Happy Island for my birthday. There was a huge crowd in – who, strangely, had bought their own food and were using Jonti’s BBQ… so I guess they must have paid him a set fee or something for the privilege. Anyway, everyone was in party mood, and we spent some time with a family from Cornwall who are taking a year off to cruise the islands. Again the weather was changeable and the wind was strong – bringing out more and more kitesurfers to entertain us. They always seem to get acrobatic as the sun starts to go down too.

Kite surfers enjoying the wind

Sunset at Clifton

More kitesurfer acrobatics

Shortly after sundown Jonti called us over for our meal – and what a spread!  The food just kept coming – garlic potatoes, a huge pork joint accompanied by a variety of vegetables (which are called provisions locally), salad and fruit and an amazing onion sauce. This could have fed a family of four easily!  Anyway… we had our fill and it was delicious. We then realised that the water taxi drivers had been sat there for hours and their guests had not even offered them anything to eat – really shoddy we thought, so we gave them our leftovers. They were amazed and grateful and we were sent some extra beers and I even got a couple of dances in! Phew….about 10 pm we called it a night…and went back on board and straight to bed.

Birthday meal 1

Birthday meal 2

Sunday morning and we headed out to Petit St Vincent. We sailed away from Union under headsail alone and went the long way round outside of the reef to keep the sailing angle. Again the seas were pretty big but not too uncomfortable. On our way we spotted the Royal Clipper on the AIS and then it appeared majestically sailing along behind the reef. What a sight!

Goodbye Clifton

Quite big seas

Royal Clipper sailing by

Arriving in the anchorage and we were amazed, again, by the colour of the sea. This is, in our opinion, one of the most beautiful anchorages in this area.

Petit St Vincent 1Dink enjoying the beautiful water

Petit St Vincent2

We spent the afternoon snorkelling – and were a bit surprised to see that our anchor had completely disappeared in the soft sand – followed by bobbing in our blow-up chairs. Later in the afternoon we cleaned up and headed into Petit St Vincent’s beach bar for sundowners. Enjoyed ourselves and I love the way they utilise driftwood here, although always feel sorry for the lobsters that are on death row! A great way to end the day… A windy night in the anchorage meant a rolly one – so not much sleeping going on unfortunately….

I think I left an anchor here somewhere!

First chair bob of the season!

PSV beach bar setting

Driftwood tables

Petit St Vincent 3

Sundowners at PSV

Driftwood lamp

Lobster death row

Petit St Vincent 4

Monday up bright and early and the sky is blue again – hurrah!   Went snorkelling again – not much to see really just the usual suspects but this weird fish lying on the bottom with his wings out! He folded his wings and swam off just after we took this photo and don’t know what he is – definitely not a flying fish though! Oh yes, and while out with the camera, we checked out dink’s new hydrofoil which helps him plane at lower speeds – so faster and more fuel efficient… Doesn’t he look smart???

Ahhhh cute....

Strange fish sitting on the sandy bottom

Sea urchins everywhere

Dink's new go faster wings

After snorkelling and more boat jobs, we had a spot of lunch, noting with interest that there were a couple of dinghies on the beach. This is a private island and the public are not allowed outside of certain areas – and, yes, security soon made them leave! In the afternoon, we were going to bob in the chairs again, but the clouds rolled in and it started raining. Oh well – a lazy afternoon on board and a quiet evening.

Dinghy on the beach - not for long!

Tuesday and we moved on again – this time to Chatham Bay, back on Union Island. The wind direction is perfect for us to sail through the gap in the reef and harden up to get around the corner – so the headsail is out and we enjoyed the best sail of our trip so far. Beautiful seas with winds between 15-20 knots and no rain squalls…. Just plain perfect.

Coastline of Union Island

Enjoying the sail

All too soon, however, it was over and we had arrived in Chatham Bay. We love this laid back place. Got ourselves anchored and Richard snorkelled it to make sure we have a good set – this is an anchorage notorious for its strong winds so we have a lot of chain out…. Well, the mistake I made was letting him take the camera with him, so while I’m fussing around checking everything is set he’s taking snorkelling selfies and views of Morphie never seen before!

Snorkelling selfie!

Me checking the anchor

Giant starfish

Different view of Morphie

We then went ashore to the Aqua Resort – not really keen on this place but it is the only way we can get the internet and having been offline now since Saturday morning, wanted to just check all was OK. Was nice, because I picked up some more birthday messages….. thanks everyone….. Back on board and we did more jobs before going ashore around 3ish – and straight into Bollheads to see the gang. Although we were hoping for some bobbing time, the weather turned against us again as the rain came down. Oh well…. But Tony, Shauna and Tim were delighted to see us again and we had a great time catching up with them and Tim cooked us some of his most amazing fishcakes as a treat. (Ron and Carolyn please note – they are still delicious!). Enjoyed the sunset and were back on board around 6.30 pm for a quiet night.

Chatham Bay

Tim the chef

Tim's famous fishcakes

Sunset over the anchorage at Chatham

During the night the wind howled – as expected – but there were strange noises coming from the anchor chain as we swung around. So a couple of times Richard went out to check everything and all was well – we think it was just snatching so we led out another 40 foot of chain…. It was a gorgeous moonlit night though although the photo really doesn’t do it justice. So another restless night – and we are both pretty tired!

Bright moonlit night

Wednesday morning and we were up bright and early – and did more boat jobs like laundry and making water. Oh yes, Richard had to go back to Aqua to retrieve our dinghy padlock which he had dropped into the sea yesterday!   Didn’t let him have the camera this time…. We eventually went ashore around 4pm and did a beach bar crawl. The first bar – called Mr Pleasures – was very local and near the fisherman’s village. Really friendly people and we enjoyed chatting with them. One of the guys – called Stress – had caught an iguana in the morning and it was bubbling away in the pot. So Richard, getting in practice for “I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here”, decided that it was worth a taste. No, it doesn’t take like chicken! It was strong and tough as old boots – and I nearly gagged watching him chew on the green lizard skin…. Yuck although the local guys were very impressed that he ate it!   Later on we moved to Sunset Bar and bumped into some cruisers that we had met recently in Carriacou. Had a bit of a laugh and then wandered off on our own to have an early dinner at Bollheads…. Fantastic spread as always – thanks Tim!  Amazing what he can turn out with the very limited facilities that they have behind the scenes.Panorama of Chatham Bay

Tim's wonderful meal

Another sunset and this time with a cruise ship coming into anchor behind us for the night. Who needs the moon when these guys light up the anchorage for you????

Another Chatham sunsetCruise ship in our anchorage

Thursday morning and we have a bit of a lay in…. followed by some boat jobs. I’m keen to clean up the stainless along the guard rail, the rub rail and the deck fittings – so get in dink and manage to get half of it done. The rest can wait until tomorrow as we are supposed to be ashore for 1pm at Bollheads today. They have very kindly invited us to join them for their staff lunch (at no cost). What an honour and pleasure it was – fantastic food too. Really really local – callalou soup (think spinach) which was the base for a stew which contained plaintain, carrots, home-made dumplings, pigs tails and chicken wings… All on the bone of course… so lots of eating with hands followed. We had a really nice time.

Staff lunch

Callalou stew

After lunch we went off to Aqua again as we want to check the weather forecast in preparation for our next sail direct to Bequia. The weather actually is vastly improved with the odd shower and potentially stronger winds overnight Friday into Saturday – but any other day would be good for passage making…. Coming back to Morphie we spot that Troubadour have just anchored – so we went over to say hi and then went ashore for happy hour and caught up with all the other cruisers, who all knew each other from before. It was great to see Linda and Chris again.

After a great happy hour, we then walked back on our own down the beach to Bollheads for sundowners. We enjoyed another spectacular sunset and then as we were leaving Tim ran out with a huge pot of the callalou stew for us to take back onboard – so guess what we had for dinner on board too?!? Fantastic tasting stuff…. and, with bellies full, we had an early night.

Sadly no green flash tonight

It is Friday now and we have decided to leave for Bequia on Sunday or Monday – providing the forecast sticks. So this morning I have finished the rest of the stainless and Richard has done a couple of other jobs…   We are in Aqua again now to publish this and are hoping for some beach bobbing time real soon!

Bye for now



Exploring Carriacou and beyond

Tuesday and the weather started to improve with just occasional showers and some blue sky. Hurrah! We spent most of the day doing boat jobs and watching the anchoring shenanigans – so glad we are at the back of the fleet and away from most of them. Even a large motorboat came in and tried to anchor five times before finally giving up and leaving altogether – I assume embarrassment was behind that decision… Oh yes, and we have a Swedish boat anchored alongside us and they do like to get naked!

Morphie enjoying the sun

About 4 pm we went ashore for sundowners at the Lambie Queen. Had a few cold beers and enjoyed the view out to the anchorage and catching up with the owner. The sun was starting to go down as we headed back to Morphie and we were really pleased to be able to get such a great photo of her. We had a quiet evening followed by a rough night as the wind howled and the boat rolled….. Oh well.

Lambi Queen

Morphie is at the back!

Morphie at sunset

Wednesday and more boat jobs accomplished – Richard is working to a regular maintenance schedule now and I spent a few hours washing the salt off all the external woodwork and stainless steel. The weather continues to improve and the sun is now shining so we take some time out to explore the mangrove swamp. Feeling our way through, around and across sandbanks, Richard the intrepid dinghy captain explorer was thoroughly enjoying himself.

The dinghy captain

Creeping across sand bars

Just inside the entrance we came across quite a few dead boats – presumably remnants from previous storms. Dinking around and there is nobody here apart from us and the birds…. and the huge fish that keep swirling close to the surface and one huge one which almost leaped out of the water alongside me, and it really made me jump it was so close! The whole area just kept opening up as we meandered through and was a very enjoyable way to spend a few hours – a real treat.

Dead boats 1

Dead boats 2

White egret in the mangroves

Huge mangrove swamp

I can still see you!

Huge mangrove swamp 2Go faster stripes

Panorama of the mangroves

On the way back we had a look at the new marina they are building – well, actually, they’ve been building this for more than a decade and very little to show for it so far! And all of this goes on alongside the sleepy traditional way of life with fisherman cleaning today’s catch on the beach….

It's only taken 13 years so far

Cleaning today's catch

Oh yes, and at the dock, there are a family of cute little fish to welcome you – and here I am with my hands and camera in the water trying to get a good photo – only to be warned by the locals that this particular type of porcupine puffer fish are incredibly toxic and a puncture wound by one of their spines would be fatal…. Not one of my better ideas then!

Welcoming party at the dockCute but deadly!

Wednesday late afternoon we went ashore to the Lazy Turtle which has just reopened under new management. We enjoyed a few sundowners and had a jolly time chatting with some cruisers before going back to Morphie for dinner and to our rolly bed.

View out from Lazy Turtle

Thursday morning we had a lazy start before going ashore to do a tour of the island. Although we have been to Carriacou before a few times this is one island that we haven’t really explored much. And there really isn’t a lot to see apart from some stunning scenery across the Grenadines and down towards Hillsborough…. But interesting nevertheless, particularly hearing about their traditional boat building heritage, which continues to this day with all construction being done by eye, with no plans.

View down to Hillsborough

Paradise beach looking out to Sandy Island

When we got back to Tyrrel Bay we dinked to the new customs and immigration office where we checked out for a Friday departure to Union Island. Job done and back on board, pretty shattered, so after a restorative nap Richard took me back ashore to the Lazy Turtle for dinner. Good food and pleasant evening….followed by an early night.

Panorama of Tyrrel Bay

Up early Friday morning and we are underway by 8.30 am. Weather forecast was a bit iffy again but nothing to concern us. As we headed out towards the Sisters Rocks the wind kicked in – strongly! But no worries, we are reefed down, and then we get a series of squalls with winds around 35 knots. We changed our course to get some shelter from the foaming seas by running inside Sandy Island towards Hillsborough before we headed out into the channel towards Union Island. And we found some superyachts anchored here too……

Goodbye Carriacou

A rainbow to wish us on our way

Superyachts by Sandy Island

Sandy Island

As we passed through Hillsborough into the channel the torrential rain squalls just kept coming! Boats were struggling to keep control and one charter boat in particular kept broaching and every time he recovered he ended up on a collision course for us. Luckily we had spotted him before the latest whiteout and kept ourselves safe by taking constant evasive action! What is it with these people? Full sails up in really rough conditions with poor visibility?? Grrrr…..

Oh well…. no harm done… and we arrived into Clifton around 11 ish. Got ourselves sorted out – while simultaneously fending off a selection of boat boys who remembered us from previous visits – and then went into town to check in. Customs was open but immigration not manned – so we had to head off to the airport to do this bit. This always happens to us! Back on board with the new flag hoisted and we had a lazy afternoon on board with constant squalls coming through.

Can't see much!

Whiteout coming!

Finally it settled down just long enough for us to get to Happy Island to see Jonti. We spent some time chatting to him and some rather inebriated French and Germans whilst watching Morphie hanging onto her anchor for dear life in the squalls…. The conditions drew the kitesurfers out too and we were royally entertained by their acrobatics! Made it back on board by 7pm and had an early night.

Hang on Morphie

Sunset from Happy IslandKite surfers showing off!

Saturday morning and we are up early – and Happy Birthday to me!!!   Thanks for all the messages and cards – much appreciated…..

Happy Birthday

We came ashore for breakfast at the Anchorage Hotel and to get internet access.     We are planning to go back to Happy Island for the afternoon and to have dinner there…. and may move onto Petit St Vincent tomorrow if this sun and blue sky continues!

Bye for now



Goodbye Grenada, it’s been a blast!

New Year’s Day we just recovered, slept, read, ate and listened to the incessant rain pounding onto the boat….

Thursday and we are up early as we need to go to the other end of town. We need to replace our sanitation hose and Island Water World don’t have any in stock – so on the local bus we go. A long hot walk from where the bus dropped us and we end up at Budget Marine – mission accomplished. Then we walked back along the Maurice Bishop Highway, the only dual carriageway on the island, to Ace Hardware for more storage boxes. We then waved down another bus and went back to the marina. The weather was holding up nicely so we decided to take the afternoon off and go to Grande Anse beach for some bobbing and relaxing time.

Maurice Bishop Highway

As we dinked around the corner we realised that a huge German cruiseship was in town – and when we got to our normal jetty we were told where to park by water taxi people. Well, this was a new experience. Dink secured we head off to Coconuts and were accosted by people trying to sell us beach chairs for the day. Wow – loads of people on our beach – whatever next!

German cruise ship

Anyone for a sunbed

Very busy!

We wandered off to the other end of the beach and realised that the cruise ship passengers didn’t walk too far as it was pretty empty there…. But no facilities – so we headed back to the bar and just people watched for a while.

They don't venture far

So we went into the sea bobbing and I played around with the waterproof camera – Richard really doesn’t bob with two beers, one of them belongs to me!  Enjoyed people watching some more and were amazed by how many people could get squeezed into one boat at a time as the hordes came and went every 10 minutes or so…. Interesting afternoon but it was time to go back to the marina for another quiet night on board. Made it back in time before the heavens opened, again….

Double handed bobbing!


Bit full!

Friday and it is another shopping day – the ship brings imported goods into Grenada on a Thursday – so this is the best day to go to the supermarket. Ah….my last chance to shop in a supermarket that is well stocked for a while….so I actually enjoyed it! Yes, I know I’m sad.

Last chance to visit a supermarket

Mission accomplished – huge shop done – and we got a cab back to the marina. Offloaded all the stuff and then Richard stuck his head down the hole again to replace the hose whilst I did some laundry in preparation for our departure. Jobs done and time to get tidied up as we are going out to dinner with Tom and Kerry (Dragon’s Toy) at Sails to celebrate his birthday. We had a lovely evening.

Sails restaurant

Tom and Kerry

Saturday was supposed to be our departure date… but the weather window had closed and the forecast was pretty brisk! – so we decided to stay until Monday instead. So off we go to visit St Georges for the last time – and dinked round through the commercial harbour alongside this huge container ship. They are pretty large up close!

Big container ship in today

It is really good that they have now allocated a part of the harbour wall for dinghies in the Carenage… so secured dink and headed into town. Walking through the historic part of town – we admired the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank Agency office, which would have meant something to us in a previous life!

New dinghy dock

The beautiful Carenage waterfront

Eastern Caribbean Central Bank

And then we walked through the Sendall Tunnel, which is 350 feet long, 9 feet high and connects the east and west side of town. It was opened in 1894 by the British in honour of Grenada’s Governor Sir Walter Sendall and is considered an engineering milestone for the 19th century. To walk through it is an experience as it is still open to traffic too – one way thankfully – but you have to bend your head into the curve if a minibus / taxi comes through!

The Sendall Tunnel

Through the other side we wander around and get some local fresh produce in the market. Phew really hot today – glad I’m wearing baggy cotton clothing!  Had a great time – with a stop for a couple of really tasty smoothies while we were out – and made it back to the marina – via our short cut under the dock where we lay down in the dinghy to get through! – dodging a few more showers on the way. We cleaned up and spent happy hour in the bar and enjoyed watching Bliss, a very sleek superyacht, come into the dock. An early night followed.

St Georges

St Georges 2

Shopping for fresh produce

Fresh veg market

Short cut

Sleek superyacht

Sunday the weather remained changeable – and we just really tidied the boat and got Morphie ready to go to sea. We were invited on board Fru Valle by Dorte and Rene (our Danish neighbours) for sundowners and to say farewell. So spent a couple of hours with them… and then had an early night. Really nice people.

Monday up bright and early – got the meters read and paid the bill for the power / water that we had used – and with sandwiches and flasks of coffee in hand – we headed out around 10ish. Saying goodbye to St Georges behind us we motored between two cruise ships who are in today. After we had cleared them and the shipping channel we got our sails up and headed north.

Goodbye St Georges

Goodbye St Georges 2

Club med are in town

One of the Costa ships

The wind was forecast to have a south element in it – er wrong!  It was supposed to be between 15-20 knots – er wrong!   And the squalls were all around.


Squalls around

But hey – 23-25 knots close hauled is fine by us although the seas were a bit lumpy at times – and the huge squall of very heavy rain at 37 knots was something we would have preferred to do without – but nothing could detract from the big grins as we were back out there again.

Morphie riding the wavesSteaming along

With the sea state, strong currents and wind direction we had to tack a bit as we really wanted to sail the whole way – so actually covered 40 miles rather than 30, but still got into Tyrrel Bay, Carriacou, and anchored safely before dark with more weather coming through as the sun started to set.

More weather as sun starts to setSettling into a quiet night in the cockpit – well apart from the howling of the wind of course – and we spotted a number of boats coming in behind us. One – a large catamaran – tried to pick up a mooring ball at least six times before they abandoned that and went looking to anchor. They were heading straight at the reef so was a bit concerned and not sure if they touched bottom or not but we did hear their engines straining…. eventually a couple of local guys came out to offer them assistance and got them secured onto a mooring ball. Phew….bet that cost them!   We couldn’t help unfortunately because dink was up on his davits and the outboard was on the rail so not in a position this time….

It’s now Tuesday morning and we are just enjoying being on anchor…. Bye for now



Happy New Year!

Thursday night and we enjoyed the last views out to Calvigny Island as the sun started to set. It’s been fun but we were ready to move on.

Looking out to Calvigny

Friday and we are up early and got ourselves ready to go to sea… Took stock of the last views of our anchorage and then moved out through the reef. A following sea and some nice wind meant that we had a fantastic sail – making up to 7 knots – under reefed headsail alone, and we really enjoyed ourselves.

Last view of the anchorage

Following seasSailing under reefed headsail only

Turned at the airport runway – watching out for planes – and moved up the west coast of Grenada to the capital St Georges, having to douse the sails in the end as unfortunately we couldn’t hold the new course. We had made online reservations for Port Louis Marina and radioed in for our slip information – to be informed that we would have to go stern to as there were no alongside slips available. Damn…..really not happy with that!  Anyway, we get all the fenders and lines out ready and realise that we have to drop dink – if we go stern to between two boats dink will be trapped and we need him to get around. So we do this whilst underway and partially in the shipping channel – and guess what? – I forget to take off one of the securing lines so managed to get a nice rope burn around my upper arm. Ouch!!!!

As we mooched around waiting for the marina rib to assist us they then told us that someone had just left so we could go alongside after all….. great news, but now we have to change all the fenders / lines. Oh well…   Rest of the day was spent working hard.

We awoke Saturday morning to another mixed weather day…. but at least we have a different view!  We went in dink to Foodland to get a major shopping trip out of the way – finding some weird soup mix, not sure I fancy that!

New view from our cockpit

Not sure I fancy this much!

Having stored all our provisions we headed into the Carenage to top up our local mobile phone and have a wander around. There was a Windjammer cruise ship in town and the tourists were milling around looking bemused by the fact that most of the shops were closed!  We enjoyed our first rainbow of the day while we were out and about.

Windjammer cruiseship in town

First rainbow of the day

Then the heavens opened again – so we took dink over to Sails – a restaurant which is located at the end of the Carenage – and which overlooks the commercial harbour and the marina. Service was slowwwwww – but we enjoyed a couple of cold beers while watching the weather moving through and then another spectacular rainbow. This one finished at the container port – so we wondered whether this meant a pot of gold had been imported???

Carenage, St Georges

Sitting out the rain

Sitting out the rain 2

Which container has the pot of gold....

The rain moved away so we headed back, got cleaned up, and went into the marina for happy hour where we were joined by the crew from Dragon’s Toy who we had last met in St Lucia.  Nice to catch up again.   Richard was blown away by the huge sailing megayacht in town and took some photos – and informed everyone that we were thinking of trading up!  Not sure that even a lottery win would be enough – $50 mn to buy, $5 mn to run per year???!!! Oh well who cares, we have our dream boat in Morphie anyway and we don’t need crew.  He wasn’t so impressed by the huge stinkpot next door though!

That's a big boat!How's that for a mast!

Richard getting the iPad shot !

Large stinkpot

Back on board and we enjoyed playing with the star gazing app and realised that the very very bright planet we could see tonight was Jupiter. Simply amazing….


Sunday morning and a day of rest – just as well really – as it rained and rained and rained and rained…. Got pretty fed up even though we did some useful jobs down below and ended up having a lazy day followed by an early night.

Monday morning and the shops are open again – so laundry delivered, drinks delivery sorted, gas bottle filled and chandlery visited along with numerous jobs done… Richard spent a lot of time with his head down a hole sorting out a Y valve and cleaning out (smelly!) calcium build up in some hoses…. I topped up the varnish again and cleaned all the salt off Morphie. And another happy hour and early night.

Tuesday and it is New Year’s Eve – Happy New Year to our friends and family!!!  We miss you all and wish everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous 2014….

Happy New Year!

For New Year’s Eve we went a bit mad and decided to party in style!!!!  So we purchased all inclusive VIP tickets to the marina party and the amount of preparation that has been going on looks like it could go on and on and on and on…. It doesn’t even start until 10 pm. We were pretty excited…..

VIP tickets

Whilst doing boat jobs down below there was a knock on the hull – Sha Sha are in town.  They have come into the marina to have lunch so have sought us out. Fantastic – had a really nice couple of hours with them in the restaurant – and then said our fond farewells as we probably won’t see them now until later in the season…. Rest of the day was spent lazing around waiting for the party.

We arrived at the New Year’s Eve party promptly at 10.00 pm and there were about three of us! There were huge numbers of security, police and marina staff around too…. Had a wander around and looked at the stage and the setting for the party and were glad to see loads of bars and covered areas in the VIP area cos the rain keeps on coming down…. Even the superyachts were lit up for the occasion.

All ready to go

An early arrival - check out those shoes!

Staff setting up one of the many bars

Superyachts lit up for the celebrations

There was an additional elevated VIP area too but we couldn’t gain access as this was for ‘special’ VIPs only – jokingly we said that this must be for the Prime Minister and his entourage and, guess what, it was!!! So funny…..

Anyway between torrential rain showers we were out and about drinking, eating, dancing and enjoying the show – lots of twerking going on as usual, but not by me!   We also spent some time with our dock neighbours who have just sailed across the Atlantic from Denmark – really fun people – and one of the couples got engaged half way across the ocean. How romantic…

Silly grins to go with our hats

Big crowd

Our boat neighbours from Denmark

One of the bands

Dancing Grenadian style

The New Year arrived and was heralded by the usual countdown, firework display, champagne quaffing and more dancing…. Followed by more rain – and most of the VIP guests ended up under cover on top of what is usually the swimming pool – the floor was vibrating with the movement and the bass from the stage and we did wonder whether it would hold at one point!  Anyway…the party continued and we had a blast, getting back on board at 5.45 am today… and the event was still going strong!   Pretty tired but great fun.

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year 2

Gone to recover now…….  And yes, it’s still raining!  Bye