2021 Life Logs, Day 48: Christmas in the Caribbean
Date: Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Weather: Beautiful Winter Day; High 36, Low 23 Degrees F
Location: At Home in The Cottage, East Falmouth, MA
It was a beautiful winter day here today, but ‘winter day’ means it was cold. And just reading about what is happening in Texas is frightening and making me even colder. My sister that lives outside Nashville, Tennessee, has power, but the streets are still snow covered, the temperature is below freezing, and they are expecting 3 more inches of snow tonight. She is feeling very cold even though she has heat. I am so thankful that our weather here is not as severe. Still, it is cold. So, I warmed myself just by writing today. I am currently writing Chapter 6 of The Voyage of Windbird and the title of that chapter is ‘Christmas in the Caribbean’. At this point in our trip around the world, we had been delayed for a month in the Chesapeake Bay area while installing a new engine. Then once we left Norfolk, we had a truly rough passage to Saint Martin in the Caribbean. In this chapter, things are looking up. We are in the Caribbean putting all of the bad experiences of the past two months behind us and enjoying a visit by our children, Heather, Jed, and Justin. This was before Justin met Jo. They flew to Saint Lucia to spend Christmas in the Caribbean with us. We snorkeled, we went diving, we hiked to waterfalls and in the rain forest, we sailed and anchored in spectacularly beautiful places, and it was hot. Most days were in the 80’s and we were all loving it. Once the kids flew home, Mark and I sailed to Bequia in the Grenadines where we spent time researching and planning our trip through the rest of the Caribbean. While in Bequia, I was introduced to Skype by a German cruiser in the internet café, I ran into Martha Stewart in a wine shop, and hiked and explored that island. Then we sailed to the Tobago Cays in the Grenadines and snorkeled ‘til we dropped. All these things kept me warm while writing today. When I give my presentations about sailing around the world, I never really mention the Caribbean. I had forgotten how wonderful it was at the time. I must thank my son Justin for encouraging me to write a daily log as we traveled. Without that daily record, many of the wonderful memories would be lost because there were so many wonderful memories during the six years of sailing . . . too many for one mind to store. So, thank you, Justin, and thank you for giving me the nudge a few weeks ago to start writing again. I am really enjoying it.
I also did all of the normal daily activities. This week that includes going to Heather and Jed’s twice a day to feed the guinea pigs. And today I walked with Shadow, played ball with Shadow, worked on my current jigsaw puzzle (going really slow, but making progress), watched the latest episode in a gardening docu-series, rode my daily 6 miles on my exercise bike, and spent a little time cleaning house. But I must admit that I rush through all of these things to get back to writing.
Something I rediscovered today was a poem sent to us via email the day the kids flew home. It was entitled ‘Twas the Day After Christmas. It was written by our dear friends Detta and Tom Porat and their two children, Matthew and Sarah. It perfectly captured the nine glorious days we had spent together. It warmed my heart. Hope it warms your heart as well.
‘Twas the day after Christmas and all ‘round the yacht
The water was warm and the sun was so hot.
The children lay tanning—Heather, Justin, and Jed
With memories of reef fish aswim in their heads.
A parrot was hung by the GPS with care
In hopes that a mooring in Vieux Fort would be there.
With Pa in his swim trunks and I in bare feet
We’d just settled in for a long windward beat.
When out on the deck, there arose such a clatter
I peaked out of the cockpit to see what was the matter.
Then what to our wondrous eyes did appear
But rainbows in our wake and flying fish oh so near.
As we sailed to the north and splashed through the waves
We remembered rain forests, reefs, and bat caves.
We’ve snorkeled and scuba’d, we’ve hiked and we’ve fished
This Christmas we all got more than we’d wished.
To family and friends we wish could be here
Merry Christmas to all and Happy New Year!
HO! HO! HO!