Day 72, Year 1: Vieux Fort, St. Lucia to Bequia
Date: Wednesday, December 28, 2005, 1748 AST
Weather: Sunny and 83 degrees
Latitude: N 13 degrees 00.62 minutes
Longitude: W 61 degrees 14.52 minutes
Location: Admiralty Bay, Bequia, The Grenadines

It is 5:58 pm here, Atlantic Standard Time, and about 5:00 pm if you are reading this from the eastern US. The sun just dipped below the horizon and we are sitting here in Admiralty Bay in Bequia. I have been using Eastern Standard Time until now in these logs, but have decided that it makes more sense to report things by the time they are happening here. Just remember that we are always an hour ahead of those of you on the east coast.

A quick summary of today:
Sunrise 0550 Atlantic Time in Vieux Fort, St. Lucia
Mark and Judy up and at ’em 0600 Atlantic Time
Raised the mainsail and pulled up anchor 0620
Set a course of 212 degrees for a windward sail around St. Vincent to Bequia 0630
Changed course to 245 degrees for a leeward sail around St. Vincent to Bequia 0730
Motor sailed with the wind behind us most of the day
At 1330 turned off the engine and sailed from the south end of St. Vincent to Bequia
Anchored in Admiralty Bay in Bequia 1530
Took the dinghy into town to check in with Customs at 1700; bought a baguette and a few local beers to supplement dinner
1730 Returned to Windbird to watch the sunset
Tough Life!!!

As we pulled up the anchor in Vieux Fort this morning, a neighboring boat hailed us. The boat was Greetsiel from Germany. Mark scurried below to get a couple of quarts of oil and I prepared to do my first “drive by” drop off. It actually went very smoothly and Mark was able to toss the quarts that were caught by Greetsiel’s captain quite easily. When he was offered a bottle of wine in return, however, he had to decline as I think he was sure he wouldn’t be able to catch something that heavy and thought, “Why waste a good bottle of wine?” If we see them in another port, we can go say hello and collect that bottle of wine in a more conducive atmosphere.

Since Vieux Fort is located at the southeast tip of St. Lucia, we had hoped to cross over to St. Vincent and sail down the windward side to Bequia. Winds should have been out of the east and by staying on the windward or east side of the island we hoped to avoid the problem of having to motor once in the lee of the land which is what happens when you sail on the west side of these islands.. But about an hour into the crossing we realized that this was not going to work. We had north/northeast winds directly behind us. So we were rolling in the seas and fighting a current. That was going to put us in Bequia after dark, so being the flexible sailors that we are learning to be, we changed course and headed for the west side of St. Vincent. At least this way we knew we could pull into an anchorage on the west side of St. Vincent and continue to Bequia tomorrow. There are no safe anchorages on the east side of the island, so this was the safest bet.

As we headed down the coast of St. Vincent toward Bequia, we recognized the places we had visited during the past week–Wallilabou, Barrouallie, Layou, and finally Kingstown. Heather, Jed, and Justin will remember all of those places as we spent time in each as we traveled up and down the coast of St. Vincent in the local busses-an experience I won’t forget for a long time. As we came close to Bequia a new kind of boat boy approached us. He was not selling oranges, local art work, beaded necklaces, or trying to help us with a mooring. He was flying by in his rubber dinghy and either video taping or taking pictures of the boat as we entered the bay. He did the same with other boats arriving. I’m sure he will find us tomorrow to offer his wares.

Our trip into town to check in with Customs was quick and easy. We are now back on the boat, cooking dinner, and just relaxing. We plan to stay here for at least a week, maybe two, reprovision, and do a little boat maintenance. Tomorrow we will explore a little a report on what we find here.

051228 Day 72 Arrive Bequia
Day 73, Year 1: Lazy Day in Paradise
Day 71, Year 1: Just the Two of Us