February 25, Prince Rupert Bay, Dominica. 15.34.85N 61.27.99W

David Batten
Fri 27 Feb 2015 13:18
From Peake's Boat Yard to anchor in Prince Rupert Bay, lovely Dominica in one blog, but what a journey!  

First of all, it is better not to describe the disappointment and annoyance felt at the lack of progress made in the installation of the generator.  No sign of the generator, only one pipe and no inlet or outlet holes and only the generator mounting to show for one week's work and no chance of any further work being done until carnival is over.  We were not impressed and not happy.  We achieved more over just Sunday and Monday with patching up the keel ready for launching and getting as much of the boat ready to go to sea as possible.

But we did go to Carnival, courtesy of one of Jesse's drivers and with lots of other yachties.  There seemed to be only one Carnival song this year:  "I do it like a boss", but lots of stunning costumes and lots of sexy dancing and noise.  We all wore ear plugs and were very glad of them.  It is definitely a do it once event, but once is probably enough!

Then we did whatever jobs we could, such as servicing the winches, so as not to get in the way of the generator installation guys, who seemed to spend a lot to time driving between Peakes and their base at Crews Inn fetching parts and things they had forgotten. By Friday 2.00pm, they had finished the holes in the hull and the generator was in as the travel hoist arrived to launch the boat.  We sped out of the travel hoist dock with a beam wind and then moored stern to on the Peakes pontoon with the help of a very competent dockie.  At 6.00pm, the generator was ready for a test run, but one of the pipes was found to be leaking and split.  No way of getting a new pipe at that time, but Ash, who was doing the installation, promised to be back as soon as a supplier opened with more piping.  We did everything we could other than put the sails on to make sure we could go to sea when Ash finished.

True to his word, Ash was back before 9.00 with some piping, by which time we had put the sails on, had breakfast and were ready to depart. Piping installed, generator tested and ready to go, we cast off at about 10.30, heading straight for Dominica as there was no time to visit Bequia and be sure of catching Jane's aeroplane home.

Alcedo was very forgiving and nothing refused to work except for the guest electric loo, whose pump was seized, just as it had been in Las Palmas before the ARC last year.  Very annoying and Jane was reduced to sharing the aft loo with us.  The 300 hundred NM to Dominica was fast and fun, followed by frustrating and bumpy and then fast and fun again.  We passed the Southern tip of Dominica in the early hours of Monday morning (February 24) and reached Prince Rupert Bay at about 7.00am, perfect timing for safe anchoring and a good breakfast.  After a visit to customs, courtesy of Monty from Cobra, one of the PAYs members, we booked a trip to Indian river for the morning and then indulged in R and R in idyllic surroundings.  A walk ashore in the evening resulted in renewing our acquaintance with Steve and Maria (Aspen) friends from last year's ARC and such fun.  Maria provided us with a new mantra for the Skipper's wife when things are not going well: "Is it fffing August yet?"

This morning we had a wonderful trip down Indian River in the early morning and then a leisurely stroll down the main street of Portsmouth.  Dominica is still green and unspoilt and unsophisticated and so beautiful, it is a privilege to be here. 


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