Hey we are in Barbados(you have to sing it)

andromeda of plymouth
Susan and Andrew Wilson
Thu 6 Jan 2011 19:31
Happy New Year - Hi there and sorry the blog hasn't been updated, we have
had only sporadic access to internet until recently and then have so many
things to get organised that updating the blog hasn't happened........ but
here we are again. Thanks to everyone for the great Xmas and New Year
messages – they really, really helped us.

We are hoping to get the figures for the insurance company this week and
will then, we hope, be able to put a plan together. Clint, the local and
only rigger on the island, has put a design together and is liaising with
a US supplier for a quotation as there are no local companies in these
here parts. The surveyor, Martyn, has been to have a look and has sent his
thoughts back to the Insurance company so we are in waiting mode at
present. If we get the go-ahead we will be here for about another 6 weeks
or so. All the parts will be assembled in Florida, de-assembled and
shipped to Barbados and then installed. We then need two new sails cut so
there still quite some time for us on the island. The damage to the gel
coat, the stanchions, guardrails etc. Will all wait until we get to
somewhere where there is a yachting marine industry as local companies
don’t really want to deal with us “yachties” at this time.

It’s very odd at the moment as we really didn't envisage this scenario.
That on top of Xmas and New Year and the swell causing havoc (we have to
leave Shallow Harbour whenever there is a northerly swell and anchor off
in Carlisle Bay) as well as Susan having a really sore leg (not at all
sure what she did) but once we had tied up in Barbados her lower right leg
started aching and after three days of not getting comfortable and not
sleeping she went to the doctor hoping to get some knock out drops but got
sent away with paracetamol and anti inflammitaries. A week later she had
it x-rayed but nothing showed up. It is now easing off, especially in the
day but still uncomfortable at nights but at least it is improving.

Now the festivities are over and we are slowly getting sorted out. There
is only one marina here which caters for the super yachts so we are lucky
that the boatyard (Willie and Steve) are letting us moor up by their
travel hoist for the moment whilst we have the rigger and surveyor coming
by on a regular basis. Once everything is ordered and we are waiting for
it to arrive we will go and anchor off in the bay for while every few
days. We are also trying to source a new fuel pump for our generator as
we had someone look at it at the boatyard and it needs a new one and there
are no dealers on the island – the nearest are in Trinidad or Grenada, so
e-mails are on their way for information. Without the generator we can
only be at anchor for 3-4 days as the wind/solar generators are not really
up to keeping all the batteries charged – an oversight on our part.

The people here are lovely and helpful and english is the first language
which obviously makes things a lot easier. Barbados does not however have
a lot of yachting, well small yachts like ours, enormous cruiser liners of
which there have been about 30 (6 alone on Xmas day and boy are they huge
– small towns at sea) since we got here. Where we are moored there are 5
huge catamarans that take the passengers out for the day and they have
been busy every day we have been here but we are distinctly small fry.

The ARC used to come here about 25 years ago but then went to St Lucia
when they built a marina and Barbados didn't - still on the 25th
anniversary of the ARC at least one yacht came here, albeit not planned
and minus a few bits! When coming to the Caribbean and wishing to visit
Barbados you really do need to see the island first due to the prevailing
winds. With the ARC and non-ARC yachts mainly heading to St Lucia there
are not many visiting yachts nowadays, hence the lack of a sailing marine
industry and marinas for the average yachtie. Even the yacht club and
cruising club don’t have dinghy docks or anywhere to securely leave them
as they are more orientated towards the social side of things – no
criticism, merely an observation and if folks are planning to come to
Barbados under sail there are a few things to be aware of.

We have felt a bit shell shocked really and with all challenges on our
plate we are only just finding our feet. We have got our bikes out and
joined the local yacht club which is where we can get internet access but
it is a good half hour ride through the centre of Bridgetown and its
attendant traffic. It is a nice club and apart from reasonably priced
drinks and food they have HOT showers, so well worth the ride.
Happy, Happy New Year to all and more in due course, and some photos once
Susan has downloaded them from her new camera.

Susan and Andrew
S/Y Andromeda of Plymouth