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Monday, January 28, 2013

Bread, Zeke and Stacy!

George Town back to Perry Institute and back to Compass Cay

We moved off the dock on Sunday the 20th and went around the corner to Red Shank Anchorage. We had our own beach and were safely tucked away. The winds were predicted to blow for the next few days and we were better off out there than slapping against the dock.
We woke up on Monday morning and Zeke could not put any weight on his left paw. I tell ya this dog is going to be the death of us! We got out the magnify glass and sure enough he had some left over burr pieces stuck in between  his pads.  Poor guy, we did our best to get them out and even asked eagle eye Dan to look at his paw. We bandaged up his paw and  all went to Chat n Chill Monday afternoon. It is a beautiful beach with an outdoor restaurant, volleyball net and picnic tables. The cruisers have events there every day, for example there was a class on basket weaving, they play dominoes and cards. Keeps you from going stir crazy or getting “cabin “ fever I suppose.  We had a tasty burger and just chilled, Garth played a bit of volleyball.

Conch salad anyone?
No Toronto but there is a  .........

 Tuesday, Zeke was still not bearing any weight on his paw.  Garth asked on the radio if there was a vet anywhere close by. Turns out that there is no vet but a woman answered and said she could help. We made arrangements to meet her on Hamburger Beach that afternoon.  We were all thinking that she was perhaps a vet tech but turns out she does distant energy healing. She did a session on Zeke and then suggested he have a foot bath the next day to draw out the toxins and any remaining burr pieces.  Humm........

Seriously ...distance energy healing!!
Tuesday evening Garth made bread – yes, you read it correctly – Garth made bread.  A few weeks back when we were at Farmers Cay we got talking to Andy and Debra from Port Dover. Turns out that Andy makes his own bread and he gave Garth a loaf and the secret recipe. May not sound like a big deal to you but out here bread is sometimes difficult to get.  We managed to get a loaf at Staniel Cay as the supply boat had been there but at Farmers Cay there was no fresh fruit or vegetables and no bread. The local bread , coconut bread, is great for French toast but it is very dense and a little sweet so it does not work for sandwiches.  Anyhow, Garth actually made two loaves and it worked out well. At 10 pm we were taste testing hot bread and butter. It to is very dense but I am beginning to appreciate dense bread!
Happily kneading
Ahh the smell of fresh bread!

On Wednesday morning Dan and Garth took the tender over to get the distance energy healer and the equipment, they came back to Algonquin and Zeke had his foot bath. He just sat there with his paws in a tub and a current going through it. We were also asked to write out the words Love and Gratitude on two small pieces of paper and tape them to the bottom of his food and water dish.  The lady left about noon and at 2 o’clock Zeke was putting weight on his foot.  I wrote the words Love, Gratitude then added Sucker, taped them on the front of his dish and we are now just waiting to see him run in the sand! Will keep you posted.

Thursday we returned to the dock at the Exuma Yacht Club and spent the next two days getting ready for our company.  We did take a break to go back to the Rack n Scrape at the Peace and Plenty. This time we stayed for the music and I have to tell you we were all hurting units the next morning. Not sure if it was the rum punches, the dancing or a combination of the two! 

 Stacy and Steven (Dan & Judys son) were arriving on Sunday and the wind was really picking up. We did not want to get stuck in George Town. We decided to leave Georgetown and go back to the Perry Institute. We would wait there, Stacy and Steven would take a taxi to Barraterre and Dan would take Con there to pick them up. WHEW! the plan worked  Steven and Stacy arrived a little worse for wear and a bit salty but safe!  

We all enjoyed a wonderful dinner aboard Quest then it was early to bed.
First order of business was a trip to the Pink Iguanas for Stacy and Judy being driven in the tender by Steven. It was a little...ok a lot rough out there. Once they saw the Iguanas Steven brought the tender up to the back of Algonquin and Stacy literally jumped aboard! Again, a little worse for wear and a bit salty.

Pink Iguanas
We are presently on the inside and thank goodness cause it was so nasty out in the ocean today, 25 knot winds and 6-8 foot waves.  If we hadn't left on Saturday we would all be sitting at the dock in George Town
After 6 hours we arrived at Compass Cay
It's better in the Bahamas
 From Zeke :  My paw is healing every so slowly, I think I can milk this one for a few more days though as I really like the attention. The burrs here in the Bahamas are nasty. Also, for anyone who has not already heard the news I FINALLY got a zero on my Blastomycosis Antigen Test. This means that there was no fungus detected, if I get another zero on the next test  I can stop the medication!!!  Does that mean I will have to stop the pill pockets?

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Perry Institute & George Town, Exuma

 Time travelled:   7 hours - (over a week)
 Nautical miles:   48.6
 Docked at:         Perry Institute Mooring & Exuma Yacht Club
Just another beautiful beach

 We left Farmers Cay and went to the Perry Institute for Marine Studies. They have several mooring balls in the harbor. Unfortunately, the institute has run into hard times and has closed. The mooring balls are still there but the "painters" or the loop to grab the rope is gone. They were attached with stainless steel and someone has lifted them. So, as Dan approached he drove by one ball and could see that it had no painter, he went to the next one - humm, the same thing. Judy tried to haul up the rope and ball but it was too heavy and too far up. Sailboaters have the advantage of their bow being closer to the water. Dan came out but by the time he got out there the boat had moved and it was still too far. So, Judy kept the boat in place and Dan got in their tender and drove around to the ball and did the lines from below. Then he drove back to us and I threw down the lines to him and he fed the lines through. Once we got settled we all headed over to Coconut Beach for some much needed R & R.
We spent three nights on the ball. The second day we went over to the institute. The first thing we saw was a skid loaded with computers just sitting there rusting away. Dan, Judy and I walked to the beach and trash surfed. I found two sea beans. One special one and one ordinary one.  When we went back we joined Garth and Zeke on Coconut Beach. The next day the four of us went back to the institute and walked to the beach from there. I found a hamburger sea bean and one other big one.
The day before when we were walking to the beach Dan noticed a pile of cooper, someone had burned the coating off of it and it was just sitting there. Well, the next day it was all gone. It was eerie because it was as if someone called and said OK everyone off the island we are now closed. There are clothes in the washers and dryers. Tools just sitting out, jars of food still sitting there. There is even a submarine parked up in the shed. While we were walking around the institute Zeke found himself up to his shoulders in a burr patch! (more to come on this misadventure)
Great! now I have a sore paw!!

We took our weather opportunity and left for Georgetown on Thursday the 17th.

Shark below the boat at Perry!!
David Copperfield's island, $325,000 a week

Sneaking through skinny water, 3.9 ft of water under the boat
A movie shoot, this is the supply/johnny on the spot barge!

Pretty scenery

We arrived at the Exuma Yacht Club and Marina shortly after noon.
Kids being kids!


It is right downtown Georgetown. After we hooked up we went for a walk. The grocery store is small but has everything you could ever need - not want - but need. You may have to wait for the next boat to come in but eventually you'll get it.  There is even a Royal Bank and a Scotia bank here. We went to the Peace and Plenty Hotel and Restaurant  for  Rake n' Scrape. You get to choose between BBQ chicken, ribs, hamburger and two sides - the sides are always - peas and rice, coleslaw or mac and cheese. The mac and cheese is more like a hardened glutenous mass, but it tastes OK.
On Friday, Garth and I walked around the lake and searched all the stores for distilled water . We have to wait until the next boat comes in. ( it is for the batteries) I cleaned the outside of the boat at the back getting rid of a ton of sand and grit! On Saturday, we walked over to the other grocery store and got a few things then finished up our shopping at the market across the street. We all jumped in the tender and went to the Fish Fry for dinner.

Bahamas Food Court

Clevon, the dockmaster, had recommended a place to eat but when we got there the women tending bar told us that the cook had to leave the island for a funeral. So, they could serve us booze but no food. We ended up at "Shirleys" and all had delicious meals. Cracked conch, curried grouper and a chicken wrap all washed down will eleven rum punches. We followed our GPS trail back to the boat and all was well!

We are leaving here to go anchor out for a few days and will return later in the week to get ready for our company. Cleaning, provisioning and laundry!
I have since learned that the Rake N Scrape is all about the music and not about the food. When we went there the first time the music was starting as we left.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Random pictures of Farmer Cay

High and Dry again - wonder if there are any beers in that cooler?
I forgot to mention the high and dry situation we found ourselves in after the long trek across the cay and through the cave. So, we hiked across the whole Cay, and stopped at the cave for a look see - it was awesome. Then we spent a long time combing the shore for hidden trash, shells and gold. Back across the Cay we went and low and behold Con was high and dry! The big problem was that there was no bar to get beer and no restaurant to get dinner. So, Dan and Garth sat and Judy and I went shelling. Eventually, we pushed Con out into the water and all jumped aboard.

Another shot of the cave
The Five F Festival originated here

 The Five F Festival is the FIRST FRIDAY in FEBRUARY FARMERS FESTIVAL, we are planning on returning for it and have already pre-ordered our lobsters from Aiden.
runway/road combination
Conch Hill
My shell collection so far, the two large brown "things " are sea beans
Sting Ray in Little Harbor
Little Harbor Farmers Cay, note police car in background
Zeke on the Beach
Watching the action 
 Truck coming off the barge! (Algonquin in the background)

Farmers Cay Yacht Club

In the way of a small world story - so here we are in Farmers Cay, population 60. The Farmers Cay Marina and Yacht Club has room for 4 boats maximum.  Yesterday a sail boat from Port Dover pulls in, Andy and Debra are aboard. So, we get talking because Port Dover is close to Simcoe and Port Rowan where Garths family is from.  Turns out that Debra works in home improvements and just before she came down in December one of her jobs was wallpapering Garths cousins bathroom in Simcoe!!!! 

We are leaving here tomorrow morning and heading south. Will probably not hit civilization again for a week or so.

Little Farmers Yacht Club and Marina

Time travelled:    about 3 hours
 Nautical miles:   17.3
 Docked at:        Farmers Cay Yacht Club and Marina
                          Farmers Cay, Exuma
                          Population 60

Farmers Cay terminal one

Brendas Kitchen - best burger on the island

Post office
We had made arrangements to stay at the Farmers Cay Yacht Club and Marina before we left Big Majors. The Farmers Cay Yacht Club and Marina is truly charming it is run by Roosevelt Nixon and his family.

 When we pulled in the wind was really howling, Roosevelt's son had left work and driven over to help us dock. Once we got all settled a catamaran, filled with Quebecers,  came in for water. We started talking to them and they chartered the boat for three weeks and had too much beer on board .......go figure, too much beer. So, we helped them out and bought two cases of Coors -light. They managed to get some lobsters and coconut, so they left happy boaters. It's all good.

We went to Quest for dinner and Dan was able to BBQ delicious steaks despite the wind. We took advantage of having power and gave Zeke a new doo .....he looks fabulous and it is so much cooler for him. Our first day here, we had planned to walk into town but it started to rain so we brought our computers into the bar and here we sit!! Oh, excitement - the Bahamian Defence Force just pulled in - Garth has gone to find out what the scoop is! Turns out it is Roosevelt's cousin - so in the bar he came , we meet him and now he is off downtown.

The rain subsided and we all went for a walk to town. We went the long way via the air strip and came back via the beach. We saw pretty much the whole  island. The store downtown had a good stock of canned goods but not much else.

We had only planned on staying a few days but the wind is still raging so looks like our 3 day stay will now be at least a week. Our daily routine is to walk to town via the beach and search for shells and trash.  That takes a few hours. A few days Zeke and I have walked around here looking for treasure. Wednesday  night we went over to the airstrip to watch the sunset.

 On the way I found a coconut and thought I would try to polish it, I did not want to carry it along the airstrip so carefully placed it on the side of the airstrip. One truck went down the airstrip/road while we were having beachtails and wouldn't you know it he ran over my coconut. Aiden, is now called the coconut killer.

Denzel and Carzel pounding conch at the harbor

The supply boat came in and dropped anchor to unload people and cargo. It has two vehicles on it for the island but the weather is too rough for it to come to the dock so it will return later in the week.

Our days have been pretty much filled to capacity with walking the beach and visiting the harbor in town.

Fan coral 

Police car for a population of 60 people

On Saturday we took Con over to the Great Guana Cay for a few hours. Part of the terrain was sharp coral heads so we left Zeke on the boat. A sailboat from Port Dover had pulled in - Andy and Debra, they offered to let him off the boat if he started barking too much.

Path, what path!

The Mother Lode of string/rope

Blindly following Dan
Our final Destination -Treasure and Trash Nirvana

But first the cave

Very Very cool !!
We are planning on leaving here tomorrow, Monday the 14th and will probably not have internet access for a while. Hope you are enjoying the pictures. It really is a spectacular area.