Monday, February 20, 2017

Heading West

I feel as if we are on the last leg of our decade long journey. At the moment we are sailing between Martinique and Bonaire, the first of the ABC Islands. They belong to the Netherlands and are referred to as the Netherlands Antilles. They are located north of the Venezuelan coast and west of the Windward Islands of the Caribbean, such as Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, st. Vincent, etc. 
We spent a total of two weeks in Carriacou, enjoying the small town feel of the island and the anchorage. We had the sun screening I had sewn for the bimini in 2013 replaced as it had started to deteriorate. The new screening offers much better shade but not as much air flow as the old stuff. 
We visited the boat building community of Windward on Carriacou and found this unfinished large boat in the yard.  There was no one working on it but it was great to see that the traditional skills were still in use. 
There were a number of smaller craft to see, all of them exhibited the rather flat bottom that seems to be this island's style. The bright colours are another feature of Carriacou boats. We went on this trip with Carleton and Aggie a couple we met who were from Florida, they have been living on their boat full time for the last four years. 
We needed to reprovision for the next three months, so we headed north to Martinique to do some serious grocery shopping. I knew the stores there and it does not cost anything to enter Martinique so off we went.  It took us 36 hours to go about 125 miles, we were hard on the wind the whole way and had to tack the last 20 nm into Fort de France. We met up with the young German couple we had for dinner at Christmas, it was great to see them again. Most of our time in Martinique was spent shopping and hauling the stuff back to the boat. There was a good weather window two days after we got there so we left.  We are almost half way to Bonaire now. There is only 1250 nm left until we get to Golfito, Costa Rica and complete our circumnavigation. I have told myself to live in the present and let the future take care of itself. It is hard not to run scenarios about what will happen when we get back to Canada in my head. There are lots of wonderful things to see and do between here and there and I intend to enjoy them all. 
A gorgeous red sky in Fort de France. 
A group of drummers practicing for "Carnival " . They we awesome and went on for hours.  They must have been exhausted when they were finished. The fellow in the middle is the conductor, he had a whistle and would blow it to indicate a tempo or rhythm change.