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VIRGIN ISLAND HERE WE ARE March 24, 2015

Posted by sailingnightwatch in Durbeck, FL, Florida, ICW, Pensacola, Repairs, Restoration, Sailing, Sailing the ICW.
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Monday was as advertised. Light winds and dying seas. We left St Maarten about 3 pm which would get us to the USVI around 8 am. I guess if you are not getting blown to pieces, it is good. Well maybe. We had 4 foot seas and 7-9 knots of wind. Both on our starboard quarter or dead astern. Think right rear fender, The seas there caused us to roll around 10 – 15 degrees all the time. We tried to sail, but the wind was to light to overcome the roll. I therefore tightened up the main and mizzensail and used them as steading sails. It worked most of the time. An occasional large wave would still cause us to roll 20+ degrees and make the sails snap back and forth. That is how you break gear. The good Lord looked out for us and nothing broke.

We got to Cruz Bay, St John, USVI about 7:30. We had a good current and with the waves pushing us along and we made good time. We checked in through Customs and headed to the medical center to have my arm looked at. Had to make an appointment for Tuesday, which we did. The outcome Tuesday was the MD gave me a referral if I wanted to use it for a specialist in St Thomas, the main island in the USVI’s. We had a long talk some of which was how I could monitor the spot myself and what to look for that was a bad sign. I have decided to do that. Have to keep the suntan lotion on and use long sleeve shirts. I have been doing that.

We left Cruze Bay and took a mooring ball for a couple days in Caneel Bay. There is a nice resort there, (rooms from $500 to $800 per night) we had a couple beers for $6.50 a piece. That cut down our stay. When my son was down last spring he took us here for lunch. Three people, $160. That may have been the most expensive lunch I ever had. If I recall I had a roast beef dip. That will kill the cruising kitty.

Thursday we moved to Frances Bay for the night. Very nice place and ran into one of our boat buddies who had guests aboard for the week. We had them over for Sundowners. A good time was had by all.

Friday we were on the move again. We sailed up Drake Passage to the east end of the island. We had 12-15 kts. wind and about 1-2 foot chop. Perfect. Made 11 tacks to cover the 7 miles. The most tacking I have done in many years. I figured I would not be able to move the next day. But, surprise, I was not stiff at all. We ended up in Johnson Bay which is a part of much larger Coral Bay. We were securely tucked in behind a reef. That kept us from rolling very much. Coral Bay is very open to the SE and the Caribbean. Talked to the people anchored beside us and they said it could get very rollie there. Thank goodness not this time.

Saturday we explored the area. There is a large anchorage in one of the bays. The water is dirty and the anchorage is crowded. Many derelict boats there. We did some grocery shopping and had lunch at a little deli. It was very good and cheap. Good is easy to find in St John, cheap is not.

We liked where we were anchored. It is near the entrance to Coral Bay. The water was very clean which we wanted because we wanted to make as much water as possible. We have my dock lord from Pensacola coming next week for 10 days. We have 200 gallons stored up and are now keeping that much on hand. It is good to have a wonderful water czar.

Sunday we were going to leave when I discovered we could get WiFi. We both spent a lot of time catching up with email and iChating with the grandkid and her parents. Found out they are coming to St Johns the 3rd week of April. That was wonderful news.
The kids are renting a place overlooking Hurricane Hole, another bay in Coral Bay. After the computer sessions we jumped in the dinghy and rode over to the area of their rental. It is half way up a 520 foot hill. Has to have fantastic views. We are oh so looking forward to the visit. Grandma is in high speed planning on things to do with the granddaughter. After what we did last summer in Granada, it will be hard to top.

Tonight we are anchored in Lameshure Bay on the south side of the island. Tomorrow we will go back to Cruz Bay to get laundry done, get a sim card for the phone, fuel up and move back to Caneel Bay and get WiFi. In a couple days we will move over to the British Virgin Islands and await our guest.

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