Apologies to everyone for taking a break from blogging. It seems that once we made it to the Bahamas we took a vacation and perfected the fine art of “doing nothing”! There will be a series of articles about our two and a half months in the Bahamas.
It was now early February. Gypsies Palace and crew were anxiously waiting for a good weather window to make the crossing to the Bahamas. It seemed like it was taking forever for the seas and winds to calm down, but finally we made it to West End, Bahamas from Boca Raton on Fed. 5th. Not many boats chose that day to cross, but it was good for a catamaran. The marina was pretty empty except for other catamarans!
While we were there we decided to try our hand at fishing. Hooray! We caught two dolphin (Mahi-Mahi). That was pretty funny to see us land the fish. We had not done any trolling off of this boat where we caught something. We didn’t hear the line run out and neither of us noticed we had caught of fish on both poles! Steve brought in the first dolphin. Keeping it from jumping back into the water was something else. I didn’t help the matter by jumping up and down yelling, “We got a fish”! Our boat is open the stern and they can work themselves back into the water. We had forgotten to bring the cooler down, too! I thought I was helping when I slammed the net over the top of the fish, but all that accomplished was getting
the fish hook stuck in the net! By the time we got to the 2nd line we lost the fish. We decided that since we were not very prepared it would be wise just to head back into the marina and be happy with one fish! After all, there must be plenty of fish in the sea / Bahamas, right?
Our stop after West End was to anchor out at Strangers Cay. There was a nice beach there where we picked up some coconuts. We had bought a “coconut tapping tool” at a nautical flea market and were anxious to try it out. We were able to get quite a bit of coconut water out of the coconuts. The plan was to try to find an exceptional Boat Drink. Ah, a plan – we can work at creating coconut rum drinks! We enjoyed being anchored and Jazzy got his first chance to run on the beach! There is always something warm and fuzzy about seeing a dog run on the beach.
The February destination was to base ourselves at Treasure Cay for the month since the dockage rate was such a great deal. We really loved being there. Not a lot happens, but the place is friendly and beaches are the best in the Abacos. While we were there we took the free yoga and aerobics classes 4 days a week, which was a big plus. We made new boat friends that were not Loopers, but also reconnected with several of our Looper friends.
During this time period all of the islands in the Abacos experienced a major power failure in Marsh Harbour. They generate all of the power in the Abacos. This lasted two weeks and everyone cranked in their generators. There were periods where they would turn on the power to the docks, but mostly everyone was either on their generators or solar and inverter. We were on our solar panels with a small amount of time running the generator. For example, we must have either shore power or run the generator to either do laundry or vacuum. To use their laundry facilities the charge is $5 to wash and $5 to dry so having the ability to do laundry on board is a big plus.
A big difference in staying in marinas in the Bahamas is that they meter the electric and charge a flat daily fee for water. The water fee ranges anywhere from $12 – $20. We would limit the shore power usage and pick a day to refill the water tanks and do laundry.
The time we spent at Treasure gave us the opportunity to see how life works in the Bahamas while living aboard. Much of what we learned is where to go on what night for the nightly or daily specials. For example, at Treasure their Thursday Pizza Night is really good! We watched for the people coming by the dock selling stone crab, lobster, conch salad and homemade baked goods. Their coconut bread makes the best French toast, especially when paired with our Canadian maple syrup from the Loop! I began to use my bread maker, which I brought just for the Bahamas. Enjoying fresh bread on board is certainly and highlight of daily living.
We really learned to Slow Down and perfected the fine of “Doing Nothing”! We enjoyed the beautiful water, breezes, sunsets and did perfect that rum drink into our “Palace Punch”.
The secret is the fresh coconut water, mango nectar and Bahamas Goombay Punch. Every boat needs a signature Boat Drink!