Sunday, February 5, 2012

St Lucia to Bonaire

We left the fuel dock at 1000 hrs and headed west on a run with an increasingly lumpy sea. We were going fast (for us) and continued this coarse of 270° for about 24 hrs.  We came to 230° to make it a broad reach and continued to make about 7 knots over the bottom. The sea became more smooth as we went south and we are sure we were getting an increasing boost from favorable current.  Some squalls but great sailing; could hardly be improved upon.  We approached Bonaire and rounded the southern end to pick up a mooring near the 'North Dock'. Went ashore to customs a little south of the dingy dock (at the water side pub).  All aboard must go to have passports stamped,; no fees, one stop, very simple an easy.  Bonaire is very different from the other islands we have been to. Much smaller and more laid back; most of the town is easily within walking distance.  The Harbor Marina is a must visit since they manage the moorings and collect the $10 per day fee. No anchoring is permitted anywhere here.  Our 'dock to dock' time was 3 days to the hour.    

Bonaire is very different from the other islands we visited.  It is much smaller, quite 'laid back' and seems to have little poverty. The shops are nice and seem to depend on tour ships.  Food here is good and the official money is the US dollar.  The water is extremely clear and bright pink flamingos are common as are bright green and red or yellow parrots. A three foot long lizard dropped out of a tree at our feet and scurried under a hedge as we walked streets in town.  Diving and snorkleing are the big things here as is sea salt production.  

Enjoy.   Phil,  SOPHIA

Friday, February 3, 2012

Off to the ABCs!

Sophia is off on her next adventure! On Tuesday (Jan. 30) she left St. Lucia with Phil, Jeffrey, and Bernie (the newest Sophianaut) en route for Bonaire.

Jeffrey, Phil, and Bernie
Ready to head from St. Lucia to Panama

The time in St. Lucia was rejuvenating for the crew -- settled sleep, showers, mornings at the cafe, afternoons at the beach, ziplining through the trees, and rum tastings. Ah, the life!  This time also allowed for mending of the main sail, welding of the windvane, and a few other repairs after a lumpy Atlantic crossing. She was shipshape in no time thanks to a diligent and knowledgeable crew.

Joan and Christine have both headed for home, leaving the guys to take Sophia to Panama. They will certainly be missing Christine's amazing cooking!

As of this writing (Friday, Feb. 3), they have just arrived in Bonaire. They plan to make a few other stops along the way, possibly in Aruba, Santa Marta, San Blas Islands, and finally Colon, Panama. You can watch their progress via the "Current Sailing Track" link on the left.