Beyzano was looking beautiful after Rob’s hard work and I was very happy to be back on board, despite feeling every small rocking movement for a day or so. She was shiny and sparkling throughout with a few new touches, such as bungee straps to stop our outboard fuel tank moving around in the dinghy and a new pole to hold the navigation lights for the dinghy. He also fitted a cleat to tie a piece of string to, attached to the light in case it falls off!
As we can do over 7 knots in the dinghy, we apparently need proper lights in the USA, with the green, red and white tricolour on display at night rather than just a white light.
Rob also fitted the mega-expensive new gas bottles, as our European ones can’t be filled in America. He also fixed 2 new cleats to the dinghy, for a stern line or anchor.
Steve’s first few days have been a succession of social events due to it being Classics Week in Antigua. We have walked to the nearby Historic Dockyard 3 times, to visit the museum and pay the Port Authority 45 GBP for just 4 nights in the ‘Park’, eat at Fish Friday and for the Parade Of Classic Sailboats. Sponsors have provided free drinks every night at the Yacht Club and we meet many other cruisers at these events. Compared to last year there seem to be fewer participants in the racing and fewer super yachts in the marinas too.
The petrol station is open again in Falmouth but Caribit, the Apple dealer where we got excellent WiFI, has shut down.
So many of our friends are here it is going to be impossible to catch up with all of them in the few days we have in Antigua. Sadly we are going north whilst they all go south to Grenada but we decided to do something different this year, so the price we pay is having to say lots of farewells to some really nice people. We hope to see some of them again but it won’t be for at least 2 seasons.
Rob and Steve energetically walked to a viewpoint so they could see the racing one morning, whilst I cooked a couple of curry dishes for Richard and Lavinia from ‘Partners’. We had a great evening with them but again, they are heading south! By co-incidence, a couple who did the ARC with us, Eric and Sally on ‘Ellisa’ were in Antigua for a friend’s wedding and to race in Classics. We haven’t seen them for 3 years as they shipped their boat back to the Med. Great to see them again.
Steve was with us just over 2 years ago when we had the honour of seeing a Carriacou sloop launched. ‘Exodus’ is racing here with some of her sister ships and they all moor in what is known as ‘Carriacou Corner’ in the marina. They are such pretty boats and will always have a special place in our hearts.
We have now started the trip north by visiting Deep Bay, where we met up with Howard and Wendy from ‘Blue Moon’ for a BBQ on ‘Beyzano’, followed by a quick change of plan so we could just enjoy the bay for another night before moving on to Jolly Harbour to provision, clear out and eat at the Fish and Chip Bus but will be sailing to Nevis tomorrow to tour the island before having a longer sail to Ile Fourchue. We sat Steve down with a chart of all the islands and began on Plan A. After scheduling all the islands he wanted to visit it became apparent that it only allowed him a couple of days in the BVIs at the end of his holiday, so we had to ask him to drop some islands until Plan B gave him more time to explore the BVIs. It’s a shame not to be able to see the French islands as they are so different from the others but 3 weeks is just not long enough.