Back in the Virgins
St John, USVI
The passage to the Caribbean took 15 days not because it's that far but rather that the wind was always
against us. If a straight line passage would be possible we would be looking at about 1300 nm. But on a
sailboat one never (or hardly ever) gets straight line, so in total we sailed about 1700 nm. We departed
Cape Fear heading due south for a day or two and then crossed the Gulf Stream. The wind was from the
NE creating a rough ride and in fact for the first time in ten years both Rene and I had a touch of mal
de mer. This lasted for a day or two and then we set to work. We had to tack and tack and tack adding
that extra 400 to 500 miles to the route.
Anyway when we arrived in the USVI we grabbed a mooring ball in Caneel Bay and were welcomed by a down pour of rain that washed the boat of all the salt and gave our foul weather gear a good rinse. As the sun broke through there was Sadie Sea on the horizon chugging around the corner of the bay on a special sunset run. The owners of Sadie Seaare Tom and Amy Larson whom we met in Bora Bora and traveled with off and on from there to the Mediterranean. As luck would have it we had arrived just in time for Tom and Amy's anniversary.
Daytime temperatures are in the 80's and water temperature in the 70's and a nice break from weather in the midwest. The first few days were taken up with general clean up chores, stowing cold weather gear
and catching up on some sleep. We volunteered to work on Sadie Sea whenever we were needed and within the week we were aboard with a group of high school kids from Beverly Hills, MI. They were spending mid-winter break at the Virgin Island Enviornmental resource Station (islands.org/VIERS) and we were delighted to work as deck hands and share the snorkeling experience. But other then that we continued to relax and as always make improvements in the boat. It is just subconscious, you can't sit around and not think of things to clean, wax, improve or fiddle with. St Thomas has a Budget Marine and this Sint Maarten base operation has several small pieces for French built boats that you just can't find in the US. So we took the ferry to Red Hook and then the bus to Kmart (which is one of the largest department stores on the island) and then to Charlotte Amalie just to look around.
But for the most part we have just been preparing for our up coming visitors this March.