We are back in the Bahamas!
We spent several days creeping our way from Satellite Beach south, spending a few nights in Sebastian and a few more nights in Vero. True to Vero Beach’s alternative name of Velcro Beach, we stayed one night longer than planned but we got to see good friends one more time, it was a good few days. The plan was to keep slowly working our way down to Lake Worth (Palm Beach) and wait for a weather window to cross, there wasn’t one forecasted for at least several more days, but when we got the report Friday afternoon it surprisingly showed a calm as calm can get crossing starting that night! After some deliberating we decided to go ahead and take it before it closed out. We went from mosey mode to mission mode pretty quick! We spent probably at least an hour going over everything to make sure everything was secure and wouldn’t go flying after everything else on our pre-departure checklist was complete. We don’t necessarily have full faith in forecasts.
The extra care in stowing everything extra securely was for no reason. We left at about 2:30am under a bright moon and barely a wisp of wind and a flat sea-which became even flatter as the day went on. It was more like a car ride than a sailing trip, we just sat there and drove. Keith had a large white bird come land on the dinghy while I was napping and toward sundown we had two curious little finches join us and provide us entertainment. They had no fear and fluttered and hopped on and in everything including climbing down into the anchor locker and inside the cabin.
At sundown we were treated with a spectacular full moon rising on our bow. A treat, indeed. At about 2:00am and still a good mile away from Great Sale Cay, where we planned to anchor, we called it “close enough” dropped the hook and dropped into our bed. In the morning we were greated to clear waters as far as we could see–felt like coming home. We carried on after coffee and tea to the un-inhabited cay of Allens-Pensacola. We had the anchorage to ourselves and took a long awaited for swim around the boat. We didn’t go ashore since we hadn’t cleared in yet, not that there would be anyone to know or care. We didn’t want to clear in on a Sunday so sailed to Manjack the next day and anchored again so that we could sail over to Green Turtle Cay first thing on Monday morning.
I’m glad we waited until Monday, we had the nicest Customs officer who had the discretion of charging us either $150.00 or $300.00 for our cruising permit based on the length of our boat. Under 35 feet is $150.00, over 35 feet is $300.00-we are 35.1 feet. Sometimes we’ve gotten charged the lower amount, but recently they have been asking us for the larger. She chaharged us the lesser so it was pleasant way to start the morning.
Once we were cleared in, we stopped in to say hi to some of the shop owners, got our cell phone data topped up, and put the final touches on our hurricane plan for this area. Then it was back on the boat, back to Manjack, and out to the reef! Keith had a hogfish for us after being in the water for less than three minutes. I am serious. I love being married to my Aquaman!
^^ The Gulf stream about as flat as it gets.
^^ Kai usually has to stay in the cockpit underway but it was so calm we let him enjoy the extra breeze on the deck for a bit. Still tethered in of course.
^^ I was wrong, it can get even flatter.
^^ I see a beach!!!
^^ Relaxing after a long, uneventful crossing.
^^ Beer-battered fish tacos in the making.
^^ The other morning I almost stepped on this little crab. I was not on the beach-he was inside our boat! He is now back swimming in the ocean.