So, a lot has happened. First, I’ve learned I have VERY poor time management, especially when it comes to this blog. Since the New Year I started school, we moved the boat a few times, and started having battery issues. Because a lot has happened, I won’t go over what happened every day but I will go over the important details.
On January 1, 2019 we celebrated the New Year with some cake for breakfast. This is a very important detail, not really. Mark, my parents, and I went to a beach that had previously been taken up by charter yacht guests and played a game called Rollers. About a half hour after we got to the beach, the crew of SV Stargazer joined us and we all played together.
P.S. I had an amazing winning shot, though I only got second place.
On January 4th we sailed to Nassau so we could look for a boat part we needed and get a few more supplies. We arrived in Nassau and got right to work. Mark, my mom, and I went with Jerry and Keelan from SV Stargazer to shop. We purchased a SIM card, Starbucks, and propane. We walked back to the marina and I went to SV Stargazer with Jerry and Keelan while Mark and my mom continued to shop. I ended up sleeping over to hang out with Aeriss.
On January 5th everyone besides Aeriss and I went into town to get food. She and I spent time together up until lunch when I went home to help unload the groceries. Mark and my dad walked very, very, VERY far to get some delicious conch fritters and cracked conch. After we ate lunch, we started our light-winded journey to Rose island, again.
On January 6th we hoisted dad up the mast. I hate when we do that! I don’t like to bring him up the mast because I’m only the backup so most of the time I’m just occasionally pulling on a line so that if the main line holding him up breaks he won’t fall. It’s incredibly boring. My mom on the other hand despises when we do this because she is deathly scared of heights and putting my dad so high up makes her feel uncomfortable. Also, because his life is in her hands. We also met up with SV Dances with Dolphins again. We spent time on a beach with Aeriss then she and I went swimming for the rest of the night. We swam to and from each of our boats and blew our horns at sunset. I ended up sleeping on her boat for the night.
The next day everyone went with the crew of Dances with Dolphins onto an island where their dog would fish in puddles, Aeriss and I swung on a rope swing, and we could wade in the water. My favorite part was the rope swing, it was as big as me! Wes from Dances with Dolphins even tried to show my dad and I how to tell if a coconut is good. He couldn’t because the coconuts were already bad. *signal mua mua mua music*. The view from on top of the island was beautiful! Later that night when Aeriss was gone our boat crew played a bowling video game. I lost…but we don’t talk about that.
On January 8th we sailed to Norman’s Cay with Stargazer in tow. I’m happy to say that I finished my book from Christmas. It was ‘War Storm’ from the Red Queen series. A few hours after we anchored, we went with the crew of Stargazer to a bar named McDuff’s that we could only reach by dinghy and a short trek on sandy paths through short, stubby bushes and trees. The bar ended up looking like any other tourist trap except less charm. It had a small outside area where Aeriss and I sat while my parents had drinks at the bar. Like most tourist places the bar and food was incredibly expensive. I didn’t have any food because they stopped serving anything besides drinks at around 3:00 pm and we arrived at 4:30. The bartender got extremely annoyed with us since we stayed until around 6:00, even though the bar closes at 5:30. WHAT BAR CLOSES AT 5:30!? We got back to the boat and I had the most brilliant idea…we should have my dad sell his drinks! Profit! I’m still waiting on an answer for that.
On January 10th we ended up near Shroud Cay. We found a beautiful private island with its own beach, house, and forest! I didn’t get to see the house because it was so deep into the palm trees, but I did see the roof. The beach looked like what a travel ad would put on tv to make you spend money. The people on the island had three dogs that started barking at us the moment we dinghied within 1,000 feet of the island. Even though they looked like they would bark and bite me if I got close to them, I still wanted to pet the adorable puppy dog. Sorry my dog lover side kicked in. The house was surrounded by some of the clearest water I’d seen yet. The water was clear enough for me to see a blade of the seagrass that was all over that anchorage. Now I know what I want when I’m older. That night we went over to Stargazer and my parents played Farkle (a game I really don’t get why they have become obsessed with) while I hung out with Aeriss.
The next day we went exploring around Hawksbill Cay. We found beautiful clear water and The Russell Ruins (the ruins of a loyalist house). I must note that towards the end of hike my mom screamed bloody murder because there was a snake and she was too frightened to cross its path. Once it finally moved she was free to run like mad. Come to find out that very snake was called a Brown Racer and they are actually venomous but only to lizards and frogs. After we hiked the trail to see the house, I was given an assignment to teach us about these people. It was impossible! There is almost no information, but I found enough to try and put together my idea of what may have happened when the Russell’s were brought here. It’s probably not that accurate but I tried.
On January 12th my dad and I went on a hike through the island. We went to the other side of the island that was beautiful in a completely different way than the side we were anchored on. This side of the island had crashing waves that would mist you from a hundred feet away. The waves would crash on the rock and spray the water feet into the air. It was majestic. We decided to turn around when we saw rain clouds rolling in so we hiked for just a little longer so we could get a higher view point. Being at the top of hill/mountain gave us a gorgeous view of almost the entire island. The thing that was hilarious was that on the top we had the best signal strength on our phones than we had seen in a long time. We tried calling my grandma and uncle but when they didn’t answer we called my friend and had a video call from the top of a deserted island! I still can’t tell if she was impressed or not.
On the 13th I started school, then two days later we cleared out the crew berth and I set up my new favorite place on the boat my _________. I still haven’t come up with a name for it. It became my “office” and “just do whatever I want to do” room. The crew berth is the room attached to my own. It’s where we store our beach tools, snorkel gear, and code zero sail. In cases when a friend is visiting long term, we would take all of our gear out and lay down a mattress for me to sleep on while the guest would have my room. Right now the mattress is on its side and the gear is pushed towards the front, giving me a few feet of room to do whatever I please. I put a blanket down and two pillows so I wouldn’t have to lay on the stiff sail. I keep two books, my sketch book, a writing journal, fan, headlight, panda playing cards, and an old computer to play movies on a shelf that also holds the covers I would use if I slept in there.
On the 17th we swam near O’Brien Cay and snorkeled by fish that seemed unaffected by our presence and we could swim in the middle of their school and they couldn’t care less. I can only assume they are used to people snorkeling and feeding them since we were in a park and it was illegal to fish there. We dinghied back to our boat, only stopping to try and take a look at a plane that crashed and was now sitting on the seafloor. We didn’t get a good look but the crew of Stargazer did. We have some really cool photos from them. Fun fact: Johnny Depp’s island was right next to us.