As we met Alwyn and his son Terry on Sunday when we sailed on Jambalaya, the boat they built in Tyrrel Bay, we decided to get the bus over to the NE of the island to see them in action.
Minibuses drive by regularly and as there are so few people around, they hoot as they get near you, so all you need to do is hold out your hand to stop the bus. They also hoot every car along the road but again that was only about 4 for the entire journey. The bus cost less than 1 GBP to get into the ‘bus terminal’ at Hillsborough, the main town and then another 1 GBP to get to Windward. It also gave us a tour of the villages and lush countryside.
It didn’t take long to get there and on the beach we found their half finished boat. She will be Alwyn’s last build and his own this time. She is 42 feet long and he will sail her in his retirement, having handed over the reins to his son and nephew. The art of building boats on the beach, by eye, is a dying art but at least it will continue within Alwyn’s family. He makes a half sized model first and then constructs the hull on the beach. The mast is made from a tree chosen in Grenada and shipped to Carriacou. The hull and deck will be sealed and painted, in this case in white, pink and green. She should be launched in November or December, so we intend returning to see the finished craft on our way back up to St Lucia.
Having sailed in a larger version on Sunday, we can vouch for their sailing qualities and stability. Not least, their beauty.
One huge issue came up on Wednesday evening when we had Ian and Annie over for a sundowner – the corkscrew broke! So we stopped in Hillsborough for a cooling juice in the waterfront Juice Bar and bought a new corkscrew in one of many small supermarkets. The cost of 2 large glasses of freshly squeezed juice was only 3 GBP.
Back on the boat, we found our Danish neighbours had been having baking lessons at ‘school’ and left us 2 cakes in return for the 40 litres of water we had given them. Cinnamon whirls – delicious. Rob made dinner, smoked marlin we bought from a boat vendor, with mushroom and cream sauce. Again it was delicious. The smoked marlin is a joint, which we carve like a ham and we have had several meals from it, so it was good value and came frozen.
Apart from food, the corkscrew and bus fares, we haven’t spent any money for a week now, having been at anchor since last Friday. We will have a meal ashore this weekend though and go to the Lambi Queen for steel pan night later on. A pizza in the Lazy Turtle costs less than 10 GBP and you need to share as they are huge!
This morning a squall came through, registering more than 40 kts which is a force 9. Thankfully our anchor and that of all our neighbours held and our decks got a nice wash. One neighbour’s dinghy turned upside down with her outboard attached, so we went over to let her know and help her turn it back over. Following the same happening to us in Norman Island, we are careful to tie the dinghy to our stern so that it is alongside and not floating on a single painter. Losing the outboard would almost be as bad as breaking the corkscrew!