We have just received a good forecast for our passage from St Lucia to Bonaire tomorrow. Chris Parker emailed us a very detailed forecast, with a suggested route to take advantage of the current and different conditions. Very impressive service. We can also phone him during our trip, giving us peace of mind. Our satellite phone now has a new SIM, one which is much cheaper than our last one as it is just for the time period we need it for and not thousands of minutes for years on end!
There have been quite a few small task to complete before we go, some delayed by needing to sort out the final battery and monitor problems which have plagued us since we got Beyzano. Sorted out now though! It turned out our bowthruster battery was causing the problem and we had that fitted in 2008. Even when all the battery bank switches were turned off, power was still being generated somehow, very weird. Negatives and shunts etc were all discussed at length with Vincent from Regis Electronics but my attention span lasted a nano-second and I’ll have to leave Rob to post a technical report later on.
Although Rodney Bay is very quiet now, with most boats ashore in the yard or already gone south, our intrepid friends Ron and Karen on ‘Magpie’ are anchored in the bay and dropped by as they had seen Beyzano in the marina. Another great evening followed at our favourite pizzeria, Elena’s. I could eat one of their pizzas every day of the year! We hope to see them again in November.
The wind dropped enough this morning at 0600 to get the mainsail back on, with all the reefing lines threaded through properly. We topped up the water, got the gas cylinders filled up and provisioned yesterday. I cooked and froze some meals today although I am hoping for a fresh tuna on the way. We have stored our belongings away safely in case of rough weather, weighed out the rice in case we both feel seasick and can’t bear to be below searching through lockers too long. We just paid the marina and Regis, cleared out and after a good night’s sleep we will be ready to go at dawn.
It is both exciting and worrying going off on a longish passage, especially out here where Tropical Storms keep popping up! Dorian is the latest one, with a predicted track well north of us but even so, just the approach of a TRS is enough to make you think about your mortality. Signing up with Chris helps with the worry of the weather but nothing is certain. Our other issue must be the tiny chance of pirates north of Venezuela but we have to take the risk. It will be good to get to Bonaire on Sunday and then have 3 months of relaxation, diving and socialising with the other cruisers who arrive there each hurricane season. It will be interesting to see a new island too and have to sail for a few days.
So, next post from Kralendijk 🙂