Friday, April 30, 2010

Manjack Cay

Kyle and I snorkeled on the most amazing reef that I have seen yet here in the Bahamas. The coral, the fish, the sea fans, sea vegetation, caves, arches, crevices, and walls were all so stunning......and I forgot my camera. I guess that means we will have to go back. We may even take Harley this time.

Yesterday we took a trip up to Manjack Cay and instantly fell in love with this small island. An acquaintance/friend from way back, Bill Harrington, lives there so it was really nice to see him again and his wife Leslie. Bill owns a wonderful piece of property (his own corner of paradise). He has built a fabulous home surrounded by beautiful gardens and overlooking a pretty cove on the Sea of Abaco. The home itself is a work of art. On the far side of his property is the ocean side of the island, which has a magnificent white sand beach that stretches forever. If I lived there I would NEVER leave.

We are looking forward to the Island Roots Heritage Festival, which starts today here in Green Turtle Cay. Should be fun!

1. Bill and Leslie's front porch
2. Dock on sound side
3. Off the back deck
4. Ocean side

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Good times!

We are still having fun in Green Turtle Cay especially since we have Kevin (the host with the most) taking care of us. Yesterday we spent quite a bit of time on the beach snorkeling, swimming, and beach combing and after, Kevin took us on a booze cruise in his Boston Whaler where we ended up at a bar called Sundowners. It was all great fun.


1. At the beach

2. A live sea biscuit

3. The start of the booze cruise.

4. The end of the booze cruise

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Green Turtle Cay

After Kyle arrived we decided to stay another day in Marsh Harbour. One thing we didn't know was that there is a very nice snorkel spot within a short walk from the anchorage. We enjoyed a nice afternoon there then after, in the evening, we went bar hopping. It's not like we were tourists gone wild or anything like that, but we got to visit a couple of the local hang outs. It was fun and, if nothing else, it was good for people watching.

Today we are sitting in White Sound, Green Turtle Cay where we have met up with Kevin. In true Bennett fashion Kevin has shown us all the high spots and things the normal tourist wouldn't see. He also took us on a tour of his home that he is constructing....all by himself. Let me tell you, when he is finished this home is going to be spectacular. No detail has been overlooked. We were totally impressed!

Tonight we have been invited (via Kevin) to a B.B.Q/Party/Bon Fire, which promises to be a good time. We will be staying in this area for a week so I am sure I will be writing more about Green Turtle Cay later.


1. Harley, Kevin, and I

2. Kyle

Friday, April 23, 2010

Kyle's here.

The wind has died down in the Sea of Abaco and for the last few days it has been flat as a mill pond. It's pretty cool when it's like this though for we can see everything on the bottom as if we were floating on liquid air. There is no sailing however. We motored the whole way from Treasure Cay to Marsh Harbour.

Kyle arrived right on schedule and after our happy reunion we proceeded to show him around the booming metropolis of Marsh Harbour. I'm not being facetious when I say that. This area has the most built up town that we have seen since Nassau. There is even a traffic light! There are hardware stores and a GREAT grocery store complete with a wide selection of produce. We even found a wholesale fish market were we bought lobster for $8.00/lb. Guess what we had for dinner?

This afternoon we will likely move over to Great Guana Cay then tomorrow Green Turtle Cay (GTC) where, at long last, we will meet up with our good friend Kevin. Kevin has lived in GTC for many years but is a good friend of ours from way back to our single days. We have stayed in touch ever since and we can't wait to see him again.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Treasure Cay

It's been like a vacation away from our vacation the last few days. From what we can tell there is a lot of money on Treasure Cay, which means the nearby marina is a bit more upscale than most. We are anchored out but for $10.00 a day we have full use of the facilities. This includes hot showers, (notice #1 on my list) a beautiful pool, pool bar, and free internet. Across the road is a magnificent beach that, we have been told, has been voted one of the ten best in the world. (no beach glass though..... lol) We have had the best time taking advantage of it all and getting to know some more very cool boaters.

Tomorrow our son Kyle is arriving from Banff, Alberta. We haven't seen him in almost two years and we are super excited to say the least. He is flying into Marsh Harbour so today we are sailing over. We need to be there a day early to reprovision so we have something to feed him for the next three weeks.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

New Past Time

I have a new past time and I am totally addicted. It's fun and as exciting as panning for gold. I call it beach glassing.

Most people, I'm sure, have seen beach glass before (also known as sea glass); and I'm sure most people would look at it and see a piece of garbage washed up on shore. But you know what they say, 'one man's garbage is another man's treasure'. I have admired enough beautiful beach glass jewelry and seen the value of it in the stores to convince me that it is a treasure to find and I'm determined to find it. So far I have filled a mason jar with the stuff and I am so proud of my collection.

Sea glass is glass that, for whatever reason, has been thrown into to sea. Over time this glass breaks and the pieces get ground smooth from the sand and the constant motion of the surf. A perfect piece is not shiny but is smooth and the sharp edges have been rounded. It comes in all shapes and colours. White, green, brown and turquoise are the most popular colours but sometimes you can get lucky and find red, blue or even purple. That's when I get really excited. Harley found a blue piece the other day and he contemplated trading it to me for sexual favours. (Funny guy.)

Yesterday we moved to Man O War Cay....another pretty spot here in the Abacos. The settlement there is very laid back and (like in Hope Town) the homes are sweet and very well kept. Today we sailed to Treasure Cay. We just arrived so you'll just have to wait to hear what this place is all about.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Abaco Inn

Abaco Inn. Great food, good service, lots of atmosphere and a great place to celebrate our 30th anniversary.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Hope Town

It rained on April 12th 1980 in southern Ontario. How do I know this? It was on this date 30 years ago that Harley I tied the knot. I was told that it was a good omen to have rain on your wedding day. It rained here in Hope Town today as well. I want to think it's a good omen to have rain on your 30th anniversary too.

Rain or not, Hope Town is a wonderful spot. Actually right now the sun is shining bright and it's hot and humid. It rarely stays overcast for a whole day here in the Bahamas.

Hope Town is the cutest little village loaded with ambiance. The narrow lane ways are lined with very pretty and quaint cottages, unique gift stores, and a couple of cool pubs on the water's edge. The homes are immaculate and beautifully landscaped. The gardens are small but full of colour as everything seems to be in full bloom right now. To top it all off, at the entrance to the harbour, which can be seen from just about everywhere in town, is the prettiest candy-stripped lighthouse that you can imagine.

We will stay here for the next few days to wait out a blow. For now we plan to enjoy the sights and the company of the great people we have met. From here we will continue on to see what the Abacos have to offer. Looking forward to more good times ahead.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Eleuthra to Abacos

Because we liked it so much, we stayed another day in Governor's Harbour. This was such a quaint settlement with many beautiful homes and lovely gift stores. And on the other side of the island there was a very cool pink sand beach that I just had to check out.

Unfortunately , the extended weather forecast has changed our plans for the next few days though. We would have loved to spend more time in Eleuthra but we needed to push on to the Abacos before the weather socked us in. The prediction is for the wind to pick up and blow like stink for the next five or six days and since we are meeting our son Kyle in the Abacos soon we didn't want to risk not making it in time.

We left Governor's Harbour yesterday and sailed to Royal Island at the northern tip of Eleuthra. On the way we had a beautiful dolphin travel along side us, performing all his tricks, for about two hours. It was one of those "pinch me" moments. (Meaning: Pinch me. I can't believe this is happening.) It was so cool.

Royal Island is really a nothing anchorage but is a favorite harbour for cruisers making the Abacos-Eleuthra passage. The crossing from Eleuthra to the Abacos can be rough, and needs to be done when the conditions are good, so today we made the leap.

It was a good nine-hour sail and we are sitting in Little Harbour on Great Abaco Island today. Already I can feel the difference here. More cottagey? More prosperous? I am not sure why but I know I am going to love it here.


The Pink Sand Beach

View The Trail of Blue Blazes in a larger map

Monday, April 5, 2010

Harley and Crazy Glue. My two best friends.

Well, I don't want to jinx it but it looks like Harley's crazy glue repair to our wifi antenna is working, albeit intermittently, but for now it's better than nothing. Yeah Harley!

The wind today was much stronger than forcasted and we had an exhilarating sail from Rock Sound to Governors Harbor. Eleuthra is a long skinny island and it will take a number of days to travel the length of it but that's o.k. We are really enjoying this island. We are noticing that Eleuthra is more, dare I say, civilized than most of the other islands we have been visiting lately. There are actually cars on the roads. Today is Resurrection Monday and we have been told that it is tradition here for everyone to go to the beach. (That explains why the town was dead.) Apparently, at whatever beach they go to, they party all day and all night with bonfires and music and dancing. You have to love a tradition like that.

When we came back to our dinghy after walking around town these four Bahamian children were so excited to see us and as soon as they found out what dinghy was ours they jumped in. They all started talking at the same time asking us questions and one of the girls immediately put on a life jacket. They were just too cute for words and we were absolutely delighted to let them hang with us for a bit.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Huston We Have a Problem

Little San Salvador was once a place where cruisers came to find a secluded island paradise but that certainly is not the case now that Holland American Cruise Lines has taken over this beautiful corner of the Bahamas. Ten years ago this island was uninhabited, beautiful, and pristine. Now the beach is lined with hundreds of beach chairs and every water toy imaginable. The other day we watched a cruise ship anchor and in no time there were thousands of people crowed onto this lovely beach. And once the people showed up so did all the organized activities. There were people parasailing, horseback riding, sailing sunfish and hobie cats.....and out came the food. If we were bold enough we could have easily stepped in the food line and helped ourselves but we didn't. About five hours later, as fast as the tourists came, they left, leaving the place looking like Disney Land after hours. It was all very facinating but one day was enough.

The next day we left and sailed to Rock Sound, Eluthra. It's Easter weekend and lucky for us it is also Homecomming weekend and PARTY TIME! There is music, food, and dancing in the street day and night. Given that we like to eat and dance it didn't take us long to join in. Like they say, When in Rome.......

So that's the fun stuff. I do, however, have some sad news to report. (Sad for me that is) Blue Blazes is having some technical difficulties. Our trusty Radio Lab WiFi antenna fell and broke yesterday. That means there will be no internet on the boat until we find a way to get another one. What it also means is that there will be no skype and fewer blog notes (if any) because now I have to find places on shore where I can take my computer to get connected. It's too bad, and we will try to figure something out, but for now it looks like we will have to get by like the cruisers of days gone by. Until recently it was unheard of to have internet on a boat so I guess I should consider myself lucky that I had it this long.

Chow for now.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Cat Island

The waves have calmed down, the wind has shifted, and we have been thoroughly enjoying all that The New Bight, on Cat Island has to offer.

First of all, what is really making it incredible is the fun people we have been hanging with the last few days, (Two couples we have met before, Jen and Maxwell on Anastasia, and Dwane and Linda on SeaVeyor, and a new couple Jim and Anne on Bees Knees) each of us different but all walking the same path and sharing the same experiences.

What makes this island stand out from the rest is the hospitality of it's residents. The people here love cruisers and go out of their way to make sure all our needs are met. Walking down the street it is not uncommon for someone to call out from their home to say "hi" and "how are you?" and "is everything o.k?". But best of all, we are anchored at the foot of Mount Alvernia, the highest hill in the Bahamas and one of the most intriguing spots we have come across. It is here that the late Father Jerome a Catholic Priest/architect built his retirement home.

Father Jerome was one of the island's noted residents who had come to the Bahamas in 1908 after a devastating hurricane and rebuilt many churches with his unique hurricane- proof architecture and stone work. The Hermitage, retirement home is really something to see and experience. All the way up the path to his home on the hill are stone monuments showing not only his artistic talent but also his genuine and humble devotion to God.

Walking and sight seeing is fun but can be tiring so we have also been doing a lot of swimming and relaxing as well. The water is as warm as soup these days and certainly not hard to take at all.

In a few minutes we are leaving Cat Island and sailing to Little San Salvator, which promises to be another unique stop.

(Pictures of the Hermitage to come.)