Writing this back in the UK some seven months after the event our collective memories are somewhat hazy to say the least! We both thought we had published reports of some of the highlights of our last month in the Caribbean but the evidence, unfortunately, is only too clear to all, in that there are none! Memory or technology, the fact is that there is no record of our activities so a brief resume follows before the start of our next visit to the Caribbean.
We met friends in St Lucia and were treated to 5 star hospitality at the Capella Marigot Bay Hotel because we used one of their mooring buoys. We enjoyed the use of their pool, the free towels, chilled bottled water and the "tastes of the hour" delivered to our recliners. I only hope Sarah is not going to expect this whenever we pick up a mooring in future.
Our sail from St Lucia started earlier than planned at 4.30 am when we were woken by fishermen who asked us to move as we were in the way of them casting their nets. The departure in the dark went smoothly and we had an excellent sail the 70nm to Bequai for an overnight stop before sailing on through the Grenadines to Carriacou and then Grenada.
We spent a hectic two weeks with our friends, "The two J's", showing them the delights of the Grenadines and Grenada. Highlights were the beach barbecue and snorkelling in Tobago Cays and a fantastic night watching leatherback turtles coming ashore to lay their eggs. We were so close we could hear her grunting and were able to feel her smooth leathery shell. A truly emotional experience. A visit to the Belmont Chocolate estate went down well and was followed by a trip to the River's Rum factory, for a tour and tasting session that Sarah avoided. It's a truely traditional operation and makes the rum that the locals prefer, one of which is too strong to take on a plane. Our farewell meal with our guests at the Mount Hartman Bay Estate "boutique" hotel was truly memorable for all the right reasons and gave us a chance to experience this amazing hotel that we first were intrigued by when we sailed past and witnessed its fantastic architecture that Bilbo Baggins would feel perfectly at home in.
After the departure of our friends we had a week to get the boat ready for haul out. So it was a bit hectic. But we did manage a couple of "hashes". These were walks/runs on different locations following paper trails through the bush. We had heard a lot about them and their slogan: "runners with a drinking problem" is apt. They are very social events and finish with a bbq and drinks, and are a great way of exploring the island.
Amazingly we hauled out on the Friday and were ready to fly home on the Monday. In fact our weekend on the hard was fairly relaxed as we had managed to get most of the hard work done while still on the water. At least it was cool on the boat once the lay up cover was on and Sarah could finish her magic with white vinegar.