2014-02-23 Guests Onboard


I should hardly call Brian & Patricia guests. They have crewed Magnolia many times and have earned the much coveted Magnolia Polo (There are only 6 in existence) Ron & Nancy (Mandela) invited all over for a visit and were somewhat overcome by the sea of red!


One of the benefits of having guests arrive is they are able to bring all those spare parts and one thing Magnolia needed was some replacement davit/boarding lights. I quickly got these installed since it would make it much easier (and safer) for all us to board the dinghy with plenty of light….and boy do we now have light!


First stop on the George Town tour was a visit to Chat-N-Chill. After a couple of Kaliks all the stress of travel was forgotten!

As sometimes (often) happens someone mentions during the morning net “There will be a happy hour on Sand Dollar Beach.” This is what happens, people spontaneously arrive carry’n a snack to share along with there favorite cocktail. It was fortuitous that this “sometimes” event occurred while Brian & Patricia were in town!



Ron (Mandela) and Dave even provided the evenings entertainment.


These two ladies won “prettiest pastels” on the beach award!


It was really a fun evening and a great turn out. Certainly gave Brian & Patricia to jump right into the cruiser scene!


As is often the case, we were treated to a lovely sunset.


In addition to Happy Hours on the beach, this was also kick-off for the Cruisers George Town Regatta. The kick off includes a barbque and variety show. We were anchored across harbor (1.5 miles) and the ladies were concerned they “might” get a case of dingy but. Like that is NOT gonna happen but god bless the level of commitment…yes that is a garbage bag skirt!


The Bahamas National Anthem opened the evenings event.


The “cruiser kids” (yes these kids live onboard and are “boat school”) even did a rendition of “Cups.” There is a YouTube video that evidently went viral and this is a cover of that. The kids did a GREAT job. Can you imagine growing up as one of these kids. They will grow up know NOTHING is beyond their reach. How terrific is that????????


Brian and Patricia enjoy the show!


Dave from last nights Beach Happy Hour entertains a little larger crowd this evening. He is an exceptional guitarist!


No evening would be complete without a visit from the Blues Brothers!



These are the mothers of the “Cup Kids” and they did come fabulously funny covers such as “The Truck is Broke, Propane”, “Pick a Working Channel” along with “Here’s My Boat Card, Call Me Maybe?”


The Rake & Scrape Band closed the evening and the crowd took advantage with some fun dancing.



Sadly hardly before we finally got the week started but it was over.


So sadly we loaded our friends aboard their taxi to the airport and look forward to seeing them in the spring when we return to the Chesapeake.


This was also the week we parted ways with Ron & Nancy on Mandela. They are continuing on south. We have been traveling with Mandela & Eleanor Q for a while now and their company will be sorely missed. We VERY much look forward to seeing them, sooner than later! “Be Safe WF, we will miss you!”


2014-02-14 On The Way To Cat Island I Caught A Fish

Sadly the same evening we were saying our temporary good byes to Eleanor Q a wave washed over my pocket as we were departing the beach. In that pocket was our primary camera so that accounts for few pictures this week Replacement is on the way.  In the meantime I am depending on the Admirals phone camera and photo donations from Mandela. Speaking of, what is better than having a buddy boat with a couple if former professional fisherman. Nothing, notta, it does not get any better!

With the departure of Eleanor Q it was time for the remaining WF to head for a some new scenery. Based solely on the direction of the wind we decided a 50 mile hop over to Cat Island was in order. After a little reading it was decide on off we went on a beautiful beam reach. This was a day sailor dream of!


Yes those numbers are in feet DEEP! There is no way to capture in a picture the true deep blue of the water in that crossing.

More about Nancy and Ron. Before our friend Nancy went off and became one of those CEO corporate types she and Ron fished commercially on the east coast and later in Alaska. As they know a thing or two about this fishing stuff when they said they had lines lines out on our approach to Cat Island I ran down and grabbed my hand line adding a big lime green skirted thing. Low and behold as we came up on the flat off Cat Island I hooked a nice like Jack.


Since yield is so important Ron was nice enough to handle the knife work to ensure we had dinner for four. He yielded more filet than we imagined.


We visited the Hermitage a top of Mt. Alvernia. “The Hermitage was constructed by Father Jerome Hawes.  Father Jerome was a Catholic priest and a trained architect who lived from 1876 to 1956.  He spent the last 17 years of his life on Cat Island and in addition to constructing the Hermitage also constructed a number of other churches throughout the Bahamas include two in Clarence Town, Long Island.” The complete article can be found here: http://shanepinder.com/blog/2008/10/17/the-hermitage-mt-alvernia-cat-island-bahamas/

(Pictures courtesy S/V Mandela)

photo 2-2

photo 5

photo 6

photo 4

After a couple days at the New Bight anchorage we moved the boats over to Fernandez Bay home to a lovely little resort.


As it was time for a nice dinner off the boat we joined the current residents of the resort for pre-dinner happy hour at the honor bar followed by a dinner from Cracked Lobster and all the sides.

photo 1

As we are chatting with the current guests we meet a couple that have a boat at our home marina in the Chesapeake Bay. What a small world it is!

Never wanting to miss the opportunity to explore the mangroves we hopped in the dinghies and off we went, up a creek with a paddle. It was not long till we needed that paddle.


In fact, we did a lot of dragging of dinghies on this particular adventure. This was taken at the furthest point inland and I was feeling a little whooped!

photo 3

Cat Island was great get away but it was time to get back across to George Town to start guest preparations!


We did make time to celebrate Valentines Day on Volleyball Beach dinging at the fabulous Chat-N-Chill. We also got to spend time with friends we had met in Bimini, Gwen and Guillaume from S/V Slow Waltz


(L-R Ron, Nancy and Gwen)

Now it time to get to work and hide all the “stuff” we have been hiding in out guest bunk so our guests actually have a place to sleep. We will see how it goes!!!

2014-02-08–Classes, Training, Fishing & “We’ll Miss You”

If you think George Town Bahamas is more like “Adult Day Care” than anything, well you might be right. The day starts at 08:00 with the morning Radio Net on the two-way radio. There are several sections “Any Emergency or Priority Traffic,” “weather,” ‘Local Business,” “Community Announcements,” ”Boaters General.” By the end of the 30 min radio presentation you know which business is having a sale, what time the bake sale fund raiser for the local school starts, what time softball practice starts, when and where yoga will start and information on where to get that part you need and how to install it. That is just the tip if the iceberg and Annette does a great job of keeping up notes on what is happening and where.


The first of MY weeks activities was the discussion/seminar on boat batteries and charging systems. For many boats the Bahamas is the first time being off the grid (not in a marina with shore power) so there is a lot to keeping your boat powered up and your beer cold. That’s really the risk, warm beer!


As you can see the event was very well attended and the classroom is pretty cool too!


This picture did not come out as well but this was the site of the HAM Radio Seminar. I have been studying for my Tech and might try the General Test as well. Think of my n 20 Feb!


A quick view of downtown George Town



Annette belongs to a Facebook Group called “Woman Who Sail” and there have been a couple of different meet ups that we have enjoyed attending.


(Right to Left, MaryMarie (Eleanor Q), Annette (Magnolia) Nancy (Mandela)


As most readers know we have been blessed to share a huge portion of this trip with our friends on Eleanor Q. Sadly it is time for them to start heading north. We have shared the challenges and successes and we VERY much look forward to seeing them sooner than later. Fair-Winds our dear friends, be safe!