Time seems to be flying by.

We have been in Grenada for almost a month. During the last couple of weeks we have been doing a lot of socialising and getting on with jobs on the boat. We also lost three days as I had a very nasty bout of BPV ( benign positional vertigo). Actually there is nothing ‘benign’ about it! I was poleaxed for the first day, unable to move without feeling as though the boat was spinning and tumbling around and it was not much better on day two, but with the kindly administrations of nurse Marcus, I managed to complete the exercise that gets my middle ear rebooted and by the third day,I was sitting up in the cockpit reading.

Just as Marcus popped his head up to check on the patient, the big catamaran that was moored nearby, drifted gently past, heading slowly but surely towards the rocks. After a hasty call to Ian on Celtic Spray, Marcus was off in the dinghy to prevent the inevitable demise of the cat. Between them, the two little dinghies saved the day and when the cavalry arrived, in the shape of Mike and his 50hp rib, the ‘stray cat’ was secured to a new mooring buoy with no claims for salvage!

Marcus and Ian to the rescue.

Marcus and Ian to the rescue.

With my balance restored to normal, we set off to try and help the locals celebrate Independence Day, but to no avail! St George’s was deserted and there were no buses running out as far as Woburn Bay, so after hitching a lift into St George’s, we met up with Stamen and Durita and stayed the night on their boat in Prickly Bay. 

A back street bar in St George's on Independence Day.

A back street bar in St George’s on Independence Day.

Only a few bars were open and, apart from one truck with a pan band on it, there wasn’t a band or any loud music to be heard………..perhaps they didn’t really want independence!!?? The people who were strolling around all had the national colours on and Stamen wore a Grenadian flag as a bandana and got red, green and yellow beads braided into his hair.

Even the bus conductor was dressed for the day.

Even the bus conductor was dressed for the day.

Celebrating 41 years.

Celebrating 41 years.

On the Sunday morning after a rolly night on ‘Gaia’, we went to hear Stamen play at the Brunch at Whisper Cove and then ferried Durita and Stamen and their two friends from Norway, over to Hog Island to hear a local band that were playing that afternoon. So much for lazy Sundays! It seems to be the only day with a time schedule to keep to!

Ferrying  Stamen, Durita, Sven and Teresa to Hog Island.

Ferrying Stamen, Durita, Sven and Teresa to Hog Island.

The band we were off to listen to are the band we saw play a couple of Fridays ago – FLOM – For The Love of Music – has two brilliant girl singers, acoustic guitar, piano and drums. They set up on the beach bar’s stage, that doubles as the local fishermen’s fish and conch filleting platform during the week. There is no electricity on Hog Island, so the pianist sailed his yacht around from the next cove and moored just off the beach, off loaded all the equipment and ran a power line from his generator to the stage!!

With no Health and Safety to restrict, creative thinking abounds.

A magical afternoon listening to Tammy and Sabrina.

A magical afternoon listening to Tammy and Sabrina.

There was a real festival feel to the afternoon.

The stage in the water. Boat providing power in the background!

The stage in the water.The boat providing the power is behind the pianist!

The girls performing.

Sabrina performing with a great girl guitarist.

The Fishermen's conch shells serve as some support for the stage.

The fishermen’s conch shells serve as a breakwater and give some support for the stage.

Stamen and Durita enjoying the music.

Stamen and Durita enjoying the music.

As the music finished it was time to ferry Sven and Teresa back to catch their taxi. With them on board, a couple of women with a baby asked for a lift to Whisper Cove, so then we were 5.

As we set off from the beach we were hailed by our friend, Hugh. His dinghy motor was playing up, so we took him in tow and dropped him off at his boat on the way to the quay.

Rescuing Hugh.

Rescuing Hugh.

Having dropped the Norwegians off, the women decided they had made a mistake and it wasn’t Whisper Cove they wanted to go to, but Secret Harbour which was in completely the opposite direction!, so back we went into the wind and waves, trying not to splash the sleeping baby.

As it was getting dark by the time we got back to the beach bar, I got Marcus to take over. Secret Harbour lies around a headland with reefs marked by one stick with a garden solar light and a flag nailed to it. He has done the trip twice before in daylight and at night, so I was happy to relinquish the responsibility.

On Monday we decided to move into the marina, just around the corner from our anchorage, to fix on the D400 wind generator. We got Ian to help us as there was a pretty strong wind ready to push us too quickly onto the pontoon. The approach was tricky as you can see from the photo. If you look closely you will see two white buoys just off the land…..we had to come in between them as the boat on the end of the pontoon had two bow lines out under the water! It was a tricky manoeuvre, but we needed to be lying alongside so that we could lower the wind vane pole off the port quarter, to remove the old and replace with the new.

Lying alongside in Whisper Cove Marina.

Lying alongside in Whisper Cove Marina.

Being in the marina and attached to the land meant that we were able to do some stocking up shopping. With all the entertaining we have been doing, the bar was running low! The walk up the hill to the bus stop is a ‘work-out’ in itself, so the ‘noodling’ aqua-robics classes were paying off.

The view from the bus stop is reward enough for the effort.

View across to Hog Island from the bus stop above the marina.

View across to Hog Island from the bus stop above the marina.

Whilst we have been here, we have met some very genuine people who have stories to tell and reasons to be here. Two of these are Julie and Mike on the tug The Flying Buzzard. Julie runs the noodle exercise group every morning at 8.30. She has a Cambridge PHD and is married to Mike, who hales from Devon via Canada. They bought ‘The Buzzard’ from a maritime museum in Maryport, Northumberland, and spent four and a half years restoring it, removing the steam engine and replacing it with a huge Diesel engine and then setting off for Canada via Grenada!? They have been here for four or more years and are definitely PLUs! They have a website -www.flyingbuzzard.com- It’s worth a look to see how much they’ve done to have a working tug to live aboard.

The Flying Buzzard.

The Flying Buzzard.

One night we were passing by with Stamen and Durita in the dinghy when Mike swung his search light on us….. it serves as a ‘tractor beam’…..before we knew it we were onboard and being fed from a huge pot of ‘oil down’ THE local dish. Oil Down consists of a stew of bread fruit, fish or meat, vegetables, turmeric and callaloo, a local spinach type plant. The ‘oil down’ name comes from the coconut milk and coconut oil that the whole thing is cooked in. When the oil is absorbed by the breadfruit and it’s no longer floating on the surface, then the oil is ‘down’ and the meal is ready!
The food was delicious and the hospitality warm, so a good night was had by all.

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