When we arrive in any new place the first couple of days are spent in trying to get phone cards, sorting out internet access and finding out where to go for food shopping and laundry.
On Tuesday night we were back at the quirky beach bar to listen to Stamen playing with some other musicians. The stage at Roger’s, featured in my ‘first sunset’ photo, is built out of scrap wood and supported on old tree trunks over the sea. After the session finished we all sat around drinking and playing acoustically, so out came my trusty recorder!!

By Wednesday afternoon we were back up to speed and ready to prepare the boat for our first Caribbean visitors……..not a big deal, for any of you thinking of paying us a visit!! With the storm sails and cruising chutes tucked away in the crew cabin or on deck, the forepeak was ready for Louisa and Tim.
They arrived on Thursday and quickly slipped into the social life here with another live music evening at Nimrod’s.

On Friday we decide to put our new crew through their paces and headed up to St George’s Bay. We had a good sail and anchored behind John, one of Tuesday night’s musicians. He came over and before we had finished stowing all the lines, we were off to catch a bus up to Fish Friday. This is a must for anyone visiting Grenada. The small fishing town of Gouyava shuts down one of its streets every Friday and various local stallholders set up and serve traditional fish and vegetable dishes, drinks and put on entertainment.

One of the stalls.

One of the stalls.

Tim buying lobster at Fish Friday.

Tim buying lobster at Fish Friday.

On Saturday, we continued being tourists and took a trip with Cutty, who came highly recommended. We spent five hours with him and learnt just about all anyone could want to know about the flora, fauna and geology of the island as well as getting a potted history! We wanted to see the chocolate factory and the Rivers rum distillery. Both of these close on a Saturday afternoon, but Cutty phoned ahead and they stayed open just for us.

Cottage industry chocolate factory.

Cottage industry chocolate factory.

……neither were working, but we got to see the ‘factories’. The chocolate factory was in a house sized building, but they produce thousands of bars a day ……all dark chocolate from 60 to 100% cocoa some with chilli, some with salt and some with nibs of cocoa.

With the master chocolatier.

With the master chocolatier.

En route, Cutty would stop the bus and reach out to pick a leaf or fruit from the hedgerow and pass it back to us to try to detect what we were smelling or tasting. We identified cinnamon, turmeric, cloves, a cocoa pod and, the main cash crop of Grenada, nutmeg

Nutmeg with the red covering of mace.

Nutmeg with the red covering of mace.

Cutty told us that hurricane Ivan not only descimated the housing on Grenada, but also destroyed 90% of the nutmeg trees. 15 years on and the nutmeg is recovering.

From the chocolate factory, onwards and upwards to the rum distillery. Again the distillery wasn’t working, but we got to see one of the last places that uses water power to drive the antiquated machinery.

The mill race for the 18th century waterwheel.

The mill race for the 18th century waterwheel.

Good old British engineering!

Good old British engineering!

The conveyor for the sugar cane crusher.

The conveyor for the sugar cane crusher.

Rum still in the background with furnace and pressed sugar can for fuel.

Rum still in the background with furnace and pressed sugar cane for fuel.

Part of this living museum

Part of this living museum

It was a delight to do a tour with someone who is so enthusiastic, knowledgable and clearly loves his island.

On Sunday we upped anchor early in order to make it back to Woburn Bay in time for Sunday brunch at Whisper Cove marina. This marina is owned by French Canadians, who know how to bake bread!! All the bread we have tasted to date is rubbery and too sugary, so finding a proper loaf is something to write home about! Our friend, Stamen, was plying piano and a holiday maker, Patty Carpenter, sang. It turns out she’s a professional jazz singer……another real treat!!

Sunday Brunch at Whisper Cove.

Sunday Brunch at Whisper Cove.

After brunch, we headed over to Hog Island and the Bare Foot Beach Bar to give Louisa and Tim another treat……

Sundowners at Roger's Bare Foot Beach Bar.

Sundowners at Roger’s Bare Foot Beach Bar.

To round off the evening we had a small party for ‘night caps’ back on Island Kea. We got out the keyboard and saxophone and Stamen and Tim had a rather bleary jam session.

Stamen and Tim enjoying the moment.

Stamen and Tim enjoying the moment.

Monday was a very chilled day although Louisa, Tim and I did don snorkel gear and swam about to the coral atoll that lies about 200m astern of our mooring. Unfortunately the weather has been quite windy, so the visibility was too poor to see much.
After a tasty local lunch at Nimrod’s we spent a lazy afternoon until it was time to take Louisa and Tim ashore for their taxi to the airport. I believe a great time was had by all!!

This last week has been regatta week, with many true racing machines competing. Alongside the posh regatta is the Working Boats regatta. This is like no regatta we’ve ever seen. The crews ready their boats along the shore, waist deep in the water.

Lining up for the start.

Lining up for the start.

when the hooter goes they all leap aboard and quickly attach the rudder and centre board. We saw several boats leaving a crew member to swim after them and get hauled aboard.

.........and they're off!

………and they’re off!

The boats are true working boats used for fishing. They are built here and on Carriacou and their masts and booms are made of bamboo or in some cases, cobbled together bits from wrecked yachts or dinghies.
The race finishes back on the beach where they started and the aim is to get a crew member to the committee tent first!

Off to register their first position.

Off to register their first position.

There was a real festive feel to the whole thing with stalls and music on the beach and the local police were in attendance……more as a colourful addition than a deterrent!

Policing the beach or just chillin?

Policing the beach or just chillin?

So you can see we are loving Grenada. It’s definitely a place we will come back to on our second time round.

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