Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

This will be our last opportunity to make a posting for awhile. We arrived on Tortola on the 21st of December, as scheduled. The marina was surprised we got out of Europe, but Z├╝rich airport is usually able to cope very well with winter weather.

Esther joined us on Wednesday morning and announced that she had work to do, so not to expect her to emerge from her computer until late yesterday. This was a "good thing", as she has been waiting for her "pro bono" assignments to kick in.

We have spent the last few days sorting out the boat (we left her in rather a hurry in November), fresh food provisioning, and of course, cleaning. We also installed our new outboard on the tender, and are waiting for a part so we can stow the motor on board while not in use. We hope to leave today for Norman Island and then will meander east to get to Virgin Gorda for New Year's Eve.

The weather promises to be fantastic, temperatures in the low-mid 80's (30C) in the day, mid-70's at night. Winds promise to be fair as well.

We'll try and get some pictures to put in the next post. Until then, happy holidays. posted by Gretchen

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Heading Back to the Caribbean

We are enjoying our few weeks in Switzerland, with lots of wintry weather and beautiful views of snow-capped mountains. But we'll be heading back to the tropics in a few days, and really looking forward to an extended period of cruising.

Esther, our daughter, will be joining us for three weeks, including the holidays. Her flight home is booked from St. Croix, so that will be a new sailing destination for us. We are starting off on the wrong foot financially, by staying in an expensive marina for several days. But there are very limited anchoring possibilities on St. Croix. Gretchen has visited the island with her mother, and has several ideas for off-the-boat activities.

We mapped out a very general itinerary for our winter in the Caribbean, and hope that this will let us meet up with friends once or twice. Basically, our schedule will be something like:

January: St. Martin, St. Barts, Saba
February: St. Kitts, Antigua, Guadeloupe
March: Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia
April: St. Vincent, Grenadines, Grenada

All subject to change based on weather and whim. The only things that are fixed are at the beginning (Jan 10 on St. Croix) and the end (in Grenada by mid-April).

With this timeline, we can afford to spend something like a week on each island, which should give us time to get to know the island, maybe do a little volunteer work, and just relax in the sun.