Unscheduled overnight stop in Clifton
Wednesday 30th May 2012
Distance run: 8 nmiles
Yesterday Steve & James went diving together for the first time. Since his visit with us in Antigua last year, James has taken up diving and is now a PADI open water diver, which is great news for Steve as I chickened out of a dive course twice, on both occasions after only an hour or two in the water, and so he has no hope of me ever joining him below the surface! They had two dives, and although buoyancy still seems to be a bit problematic, especially for Steve, they enjoyed themselves, saw lots of interesting underwater life and are looking forward to going again in the Tobago Cays.
We went ashore to Customs and Immigration to check out of Grenada, and had a meal in a restaurant recommended by one of the divers which was tasty, filling and very reasonably priced.
This morning we were under way by 0900 and sailing on a close reach for Clifton on Union Island to check into St Vincent and the Grenadines, of which the Tobago Cays are part. We decided to pick up a buoy for a couple of hours rather than spend time finding space to anchor, and were later glad that we had. We went ashore and checked in, and bought some provisions. Back at the boat we were having lunch when some nasty squall clouds came over and the wind picked up to 30 knots with heavy rain. Then the fun began – boats at anchor began dragging and one, which had nobody on board, started to wreak havoc as it moved between other boats, damaging them or dragging them on its way.
The boat boys were very good, and between them they managed to get the boat under some kind of control, just before it put itself on the beach. Eventually they managed to tow it to an empty buoy and tie it up. Several other boats had to pull up and reset their anchors before the squalls had finally passed over a couple of hours later. We were grateful to be on a buoy that had happily held onto us through it all, and by the time it had passed it was mid-afternoon and still looking a bit grey, so we decided to stay put for the night and set off for the Tobago Cays in the morning.