We don’t have ordinary days any more, which I love. I know I keep repeating this but despite the challenges that living aboard a boat brings – we know we are extremely lucky. We have been giving a great deal of thought to purpose – what next for us, and what for? It is good to have time to think.
An example of an extra ordinary day is this –
We were working on Magic – cleaning and tidying and sorting – these three things are a constant when you live in a small space. Vincent, the excellent electrician here in Rodney Bay – was fitting our new transponder (what ever that is) So that our VHF will work again. He suddenly came out on deck – “oh, that is a friend of mine and his engine has just cut out” – we hadn’t noticed it but when we looked a large blue steel boat was suspended in the lagoon, slowing drifting towards the private pontoon of one of the large houses on the bank. We have never used our dingy to help move a boat before but we didn’t thing twice and jumped into the dingy – starting it took a while (it always does when it matters!) A local man was skippering the blue boat and he had two passengers who it turned out were a lovely Scottish couple he had taken out on a fishing trip. I was thinking that it was lucky that his engine had cut out while he was in the Marina rather than out at sea.
It didn’t take us very long to reach them and we took his bowline. We drove the dingy forward but we didn’t have enough power in our small outboard to pull the heavy fishing boat so our dingy just struggled and went sideways. Then we heard a friendly “Hello – what are you two up to? Messing about with boats?” …It was Simon the Saxophonist and Linda – we really like those guys – it is so lovely meeting up with people up you know from the ARC and down the Islands – We had met them in Marigot Bay and now they were in Rodney Bay. They were in their dingy – on the way to the supermarket (yes, that probably seems strange but that is how it is done!) We explained to them what we were attempting to do and Simon said “You are going to need more horsepower” He had a larger engine and suggested that he and Linda pull the boat and we stay along side it to nudge and steer it. Together we managed to get the blue boat to its dock. The skipper shook our hands and the lovely Scottish couple gave a beautiful, shining, just caught Tuna to each of us. Perfect! Simon and Linda took their fish and heading off to the Supermarket and we took ours and headed back to Magic. May was delighted with the fish – she finds them fascinating. We took a picture of our prize and then ate it for lunch! It was delicious – there is nothing like the taste of very fresh tuna. It all felt very ‘Island’
We were still waiting for the vet to come on board Magic – May’s permit for being in Saint Lucia has run out and we needed a new one. I had been fretting about it, as I seem to get quite stressed and anxious about officialdom. I needn’t have worried – the vets (as three of them turned up!) were charming. Two of them came on board with a scanner to read Mays microchip. The scanner immediately found the chip – but then they said “that’s strange – what number is this?” Their scanner had found May’s original microchip – I explained about what had happened in Las Palmas – the vet there, not being able to find the chip had fitted a new one. I had a letter from the Las Palmas vet explaining about the fact that May’s papers all had one microchip number on them but that microchip was lost and stating the number of the new one – what a muddle.
Then the scanner went ping again and the new number was displayed on the screen – I couldn’t believe it now May has two microchips! Well at least it is now clear that the papers I have do relate to this dog and there won’t be any doubt. It does seem strange to me that there are thousands of people moving about the islands, birds migrating and fish and things swimming about but May – she has to have micro chips, 50 tests and certificates and vets to come on board to check her before she can move from Island to Island.
But all is well that ends well and I am happy that we now have our new Saint Lucia Permit.
It was a day of two chips and a fish.
Today is Wednesday 20th January – we were due to leave this morning to, finally, head South to St Vincent and Bequai but we decided to have the mainsail repaired here in Saint Lucia where there is an excellent sail loft. The sailmaker says the sail is in good condition and only needs minor work so it will be back on Magic tomorrow morning. That probably means tomorrow afternoon – Caribbean time – so our plan is to spend this morning sorting out Magic for our journey and this afternoon on the beach. First of all we have to tidy up after our lovely evening with friends on board – we had a “chippy Tuesday” Lesley from Sea Symphony made delicious chip shop curry sauce and white bread and we made lots of chips – Val and Cliff from ‘Why not’ were with us too ..it was fun!
Tomorrow is my daughter, Sara’s Birthday – she is in Australia so the time zones and the technology makes it hard for us to get in touch but I hope we can manage a Skype.
I love and miss her very much.