Log 3rd January 2019!

s/v Safena's blog
Simon Ashley
Sun 6 Jan 2019 12:04

Ok, sorry, no blogs since Christmas! It's been a busy few days aside from the fact that good internet connection has been lacking. On top, Vodafone have blocked our SIMS without any discussion due to a breach of some credit limit - presumably a security thing - so no 3G/4G either!

Our 3 nights in Tobago Cays was wonderful. On Boxing Day we sailed to Union island. The anchorage at Palm Island was too rolly and Clifton Harbour was packed so we went round to Chatham Bay and I am so glad we did! What a beautiful bay.  We spent 2 days here. This was the ideal spot for snorkelling and using the doughnut and paddle boards. Unfortunately, when the boys were setting up the boards one of the fins was lost! Amazingly, this was subsequently found by Nina the following day on the sea bed near our anchor chain! Ben duly retrieved it!

We had the most wonderful evening at Sun Beach and Eat where Seckie cooked us some amazing fish.  This was the archetypal Caribbean beach bar. We were helped onto the dinghy dock by a guy called Summer who also looked after us. We had fun playing the ring and hook game, drinking rum punches as well as some of Summer’s curious home brew (forest in a bottle!).

On 27th December we moved round to Clifton Harbour to re-provision. A friendly and attractive little town where we were able to get most things. Clearly a major kitesurfing spot. We spent the night on a mooring and ate on board.

On 28th we sailed to Mustique. This was quite an uphill slog beating into 20kt NE winds and waves/swell. Brittania Bay is beautiful and we were given a mooring close to the shore. A perfect spot for swimming and relaxing.

That evening we went to the Cotton House for dinner.  Undoubtedly this was one of the highlights of our trip. What an incredible ambience and dinner! The seared Tuna starter was one of the best ever.

We had superb French patisseries from Sweetie Pie for breakfast and came across some good provisions including decent wine!

We also loved Basil’s beach bar and decided to have my Birthday dinner here. The 30th December, my birthday, was a perfect day. We walked along the beach in the morning, relaxed on Safena in the afternoon and had a much needed Burger and Fries at Basil’s in the evening! It was also their Jazz night and it was great fun.

As much as we loved Mustique we decided to move on for New Year’s eve and sailed back to Bequia. We anchored in Admiralty Bay off Princess Margaret beach, a beautiful spot. The bay was full of yachts and there was quite an atmosphere for the New Year’s celebrations. We hadn’t booked dinner anywhere and everything was fully booked so we stayed on board to see in the New Year with magnificent fireworks at midnight. New Year’s day we relaxed. We hoped to reprovision but most places were closed because it is a national holiday. I cleared out of customs/immigration and had to pay an extra fee because it was a national holiday! Nina cooked a fabulous full roast turkey dinner with all the trimmings.

On 2nd January Nina and I got up at daybreak and set sail for St. Lucia. This was a fantastic upwind sail in 15-23kts wind.  We really got Safena setup well and were flying along very comfortably. We picked up a mooring at the Pitons and arrived in time to clear in through customs/immigration at Soufriere. Once again I got stung for extra fees because the 2nd is also a national holiday! We had a sundowner which was spectacular with incredible views of the Pitons.

Later that evening Jack (Rowland Smith) arrived and anchored near us (in the dark!). It was lovely to see John and Sue Hardy (fellow ARC sailors) again and quite serendipitous.  We had managed to get locked out of our cabin. Due to the roll, a draw had opened and got stuck behind the door to the cabin so we could not open it! Also, the deck hatches into the cabin were locked. I knew we would have to damage something to get in.  John (a retired marine engineer) took a look and we decided on the surgical option. He got one of his big drills and drilled out the locking hatch handles so we could open one hatch and get in through the deck - this worked! No damage, just two handles to replace!