Summer Sleep in Antigua
Position: 17:03.99N 61:52.93W
Date: Monday 24th June 2013
The sailing has now finished for the summer months. We have hauled Ocean Gem at Jolly Harbour Marina, taking her ashore for the duration of the hurricane season. Insurance companies are rather worried about their liabilities for boats in the Caribbean between July and December, when destructive hurricanes can sweep through the area. In order to retain good cover we have had to find a secure marina with a strong cradle to store the boat in. In fact to keep our insurers happy we have also had to do a number of other things that I am not sure are strictly, necessary such as removing the boom and securing the mast by strapping the mast head halyards to ground anchors.
Here is a picture of Ocean Gem in the boatyard, just before she was left for the summer months.
During the last few weeks since the previous diary entry we have been lying at anchor in various delightful bays around Antigua. Apart from the delights of the island, there were other reasons for this. Whilst we had been in Martinique during April the Volvo engineer that we had seen had identified a service recall on our engine that requires a very expensive engine part (the fuel injection pump) to be replaced. We were keen to get this done under warranty, but had to wait for clearance from Volvo to have this work done. This clearance came through after we had arrived in Antigua in early May. It was agreed that we could get the work done in Guadaloupe (the nearest Volvo agent) but would have to wait for the part to be delivered, something that should only take a few days. This is one of the reasons that we had decided to wait in Antigua. For several weeks we told that the part would be arriving ‘in a few days’, but of course it never turned up. Eventually we gave up waiting and agreed what we hope will be a plan that will be honoured; namely that we will return to Guadaloupe in December, after the hurricane season, to have the part fitted. We will have to see what Volvo’s response is after they have had a few months to let things cool and bearing in mind that the warranty period will have expired by then!
So this blog is going to sleep for the summer months. We plan to return to the boat later in the year, when we will resume diary entries.