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March 24, 2013

It's Sunday - so off to Nippers we go.  We were going to take the big boat and anchor off Great Guana Cay to go there, but it was kind of rough, so we opted for the ferry.  Matt, Daniel and I, joined by Dave and Dianne from Boot Scootin, all jumped on the first ferry - about 10:30, which docked us at Great Guana about 11.  Took in the sights on the relatively short walk over to Nippers.  Got up there, and were not disappointed!  It's a wonderful beach bar, decent food, beach access plus a couple of pools, music and a dance floor, and unbelievable Bikini-clad sights!  We had lunch and drinks, dancing and beach walking, a LOT of people watching, and just one super-fun day!  A rather exhausting day, all-in-all, so we were glad we just had to hop back on the ferry to get home again.  Needless to say, a quiet night tonight!!  We did walk to a couple of local restaurants in search of an easy dinner, and ended up at Curley Tails for some very enjoyable food.

March 25, 2013

We're spending a few days here at Marsh Harbour, once more waiting for some weather to pass.  Matt went over to find the Immigration Office this morning to extend our Visas (we've been here longer than expected due to all the crappy weather delays).  He went to where it was listed on our local map - and was told it moved to the Government Dock.  Went to the Gov't Dock, and was told it was moved to the new Gov't Complex.  Got directions, went there, and hit sort of success - found the office, but could only exten his own Visa - Daniel and I have to show up in person to do ours.  Oh well, we'll hit there tomorrow. . .  Today wasn't a lot going on, so we moseyed on next door to Snappa's for some lunch.  Saw their special today was XX Burgers (which I've never had before), so we decided to try them out.  Probably could have stayed aboard and had peanut butter and jelly instead.  I ordered mine rare, Matt's medium.  Mine with provolone, his with American.  Both came out well done (destroyed!), both with provolone, both with bacon.  The only thing rare about my burger was the bacon (yuck!).  Matt had a margarita.  Would have been better off with the ones that come single-serve/pre-mixed.  So much for Snappas!  Tonight's a big treat for dinner though - Dave is coming over to pick us up (Boot Scootin is anchored out just off the marina we are in) for dinner aboard their boat.  Grilled lobster tails coming up!!!  We get over there about 4 in the afternoon, and were joined by Mike and Jean from Tomorrow's Dawn, and another couple (newly met, I didn't catch their names) for cocktails.  These folks return to their boats about 6-ish, and we settle in for the "good stuff" - excellently prepared, we stuffed ourselves with grilled lobster, fried grouper, and roasted veggies.  Dave and Dianne can cook for us anytime!!!!!!

March 26, 2013

Daniel and I head off to the Government Complex to extend our Visas.  Found it with no problem, and it was empty when we arrived, so we were in and out in 15 minutes (whew!).  Next stop is Maxwell's, the supermarket, for a few things.  We're on bikes, so we keep it fairly light - each with a backpack, my bike basket full, and 1 pkg clamped on the rear fender rack.  I guess I should get used to shopping like this, as I'll be heading home soon, where I have no vehicle awaiting me!  Get all that done, and peddle back to the boat.  I guess it's provisioning day, so next up is the beer re-stocking.  Found out there's a liquor store a couple of blocks over that will deliver right to the boat (yeah!!).  So off Matt & Daniel go to do the "important shopping".  Delivery shows up about 45 minutes later, so now we're all set again for a while.  After all that hard work, we walked over to try out Mangoes next door for lunch (ain't going back to Snappas again!).  Oh boy.  Should have opted for that PB&J again!!!  Matt orders a "plain, original daiquiri".  Waitress puts in the order.  Bartender comes over and says "what is it you ordered??".  Matt explains, AND lists the ingredients.  Drinks are delivered.  Matt's comment to the waitress is "I don't know what the heck that is, but I guess I'll drink it."  (I tasted it - it's a Mango Daiquiri.)  Other bartender comes over to find out what's up.  Matt re-explained, and the bartender says - no problem, I know exactly what you want.  Whisks away the Mango drink and returns with a plain Daiquiri.  On to lunch.  Their lunch special is a steak smothered in mushrooms, onions and gravy.  Matt places his order - this confuses the waitress.  I point out on the menu the difference between the "entree" he has ordered and the sandwich he did not order.  OK - understood.  Lunch orders are delivered to the kitchen.  Mine eventually comes out (island time, mon!), and it's fine.  Same with Daniel's.  Uh-oh - here comes Matt's; it's a sandwich!  Meat's all sliced and smothered in cheese on a roll, not a drop of gravy or a mushroom in sight!  He pushes it away and said that's not what I ordered, and proceeded to share Daniel's large pizza with him for lunch.  The waitress that took our orders came over and took one look at the sandwich and said "That is NOT what I wrote down!".  Apologized left and right, bartender delivers another Daiquiri, and HE apologizes.  We get thru everything, get the check, they didn't charge for the screwed up steak order, and gave Matt his drinks for free.  I guess that kind of makes up for it, but come on, can't anybody get an order straight around here!?!?!?!?  So much for that - we'll have dinner on board today!  I defrosted a bunch of the conch I bought at Maxwell's, and made a big batch of conch salad.  Finally - an order done correctly!!!

March 27, 2013

Today's looking like our last day here - the seas sound like they will allow us to pull out in the morning.  So we're going to fuel up today to be ready to go with nothing to hold us up.  Let the office know we want to do that, and they say as soon as the boat on the fuel dock "wakes up" and leaves we can get right in there.  We finally notice them going, and prepare to pull out of our slip - just as another boat pulls in to the fuel dock. Figures.  We wait for them a while, eventually hearing some radio traffic that sounds like they're staying on the fuel dock.  WTF???  The office knows we're waiting for fuel!!  Matt goes up to check, and the office checks with the dock attendant, who says - they are just walking over to the bakery to pick up a birthday cake, then will be pulling out.  OK.  So we wait again.  The folks eventually come back, carrying all sorts of groceries, a couple cases of beer, and who knows what else (I didn't see no birthday cake!) - they call up to us as they walk by that they're pulling out now, so we can get our fuel.  Finally!  we pull out and putt over to the fuel dock, spin around in the other boat's wake so we can tie up on our starboard side (where our fuel tanks are!), and tie up to the dock.  There's a Sportfisher boat coming toward us, obviously P.O.'d that we pulled in "in front of him".  Ya know what?  Tough Shit!  (sorry - but we've only been waiting ALL DAY!!!!!).  Even the dockhand was chuckling over that one.  As we finished our fueling, he asked me "don't you need to walk over to the bakery for a birthday cake?".  HaHa!!  That helped!  Dinner tonight is gonna be yet another treat.  Dave and Dianne are providing us with taxi service once more, and we're all gonna meet Mike and Jean over at the Jib Room across the harbor for bar-b-q dinner.  Tonight's a chicken and ribs night!  And a really yummy one, at that!  Then comes the after dinner treat - Limbo!!  Lot's of fun!  Matt and I (with our wonderful backs) opted to just watch, but Daniel got in there a little.  Everything from 6 year olds to the resident Limbo Champion (not sure of his age, but guessing 40's somewhere) are doing it.  And after the Champion proved his worthiness by going under the bar at it's lowest setting, he then wrapped the bar and set it on fire - and got under that on "low" too!  Amazing!!!  And LOTS of practice, I'm sure!  We were also entertained with some "Rake and Scrape" music, with a couple of guys playing saws.  (Yes, saws - like you'd use to saw wood with!)  Daniel got some of that action too.  Terrific night!!!

March 28, 2013

Matt and Daniel had re-built our steering last week when we arrived at Marsh Harbour, so we're thinking we're good to go.  We pull out at 9 to follow Boot Scootin over to Green Turtle Cay.  Shortly into the trip, the auto-pilot goes wacko and won't do anything but steer hard left.  Not good.  We turn around to go back to Marsh Harbour to deal with that, anchoring about 9:30.  We have trouble getting the anchor to grab, so we make a couple of tries at it.  Finally get it stuck in the bottom enough to hold us, but in the midst of this, the windlass (the electric winch that hauls the anchor up) gives up.  Not good.  But now the auto-pilot seems happy again, so we'll deal with the windlass at the next marina.  Unfortunately, that means hauling the anchor up manually - which really sucks, considering we've got a 35 pound anchor that's attached to 100 feet of chain!!!  Oh well, get it up and secured, and head back out of the harbor about 10:25.  Not too far under way, now the engine room bilge pump alarm goes off.  Normally not to big of a deal, at least when it shuts back off in a short while.  Water gets down in the bilges as a matter of normal day-to-day cruising, and the bilge pumps pump it out when the level hits their float switches.  Normal.  Except we're sitting there for several minutes, and the alarm does not go off.  Crap - what next?  Man the life boat?  Gather important papers?  No - shut off the motors, open the engine room, see no water, so climb down to manually inspect the bilge pump.  There's a small piece of gunked up hose (from God only knows what!!) that's got the switch stuck.  Remove the icky stuff, and the bilge pump (and its alarm) shut off.  OK - that's the infamous 3!  We're done now, right???  Cripes!  OK - deep breath.  We pull into Man O War Cay, and find a dock-and-dine dock to tie up to for free for a short while.  We meet up with Dave and Dianne, who have already located the Boat Museum we all planned to visit.  It's only open on Thursday and Saturday from 11 to 1.  Today's Thursday.  They're locked up tight - a local said she thought the curator had gone over to Marsh Harbor.  You're only open 4 hours per week, and you pick now to go on an excursion?  What the hell????  So much for the museum!  Check out the restaurant at the Dock and Dine.  Way expensive.  Thanks anyway, but we'll do lunch on board and just continue on to the Green Turtle Club!  Off we go again, pulling out of Man O War at 11:45.  Took some photos of the shores off in the distance where forest (and other intentionally set) fires rage out of control.  You can smell the smoke in the air.  So far, no ones been hurt, but they've had some close calls.  I'm told that in some areas they just don't have enough resources to be able to adequately fight the fires.  They've set up some fire lines in areas, but the fires are enormous.  We read in the news that one of them was definitely arson - wiped out a school and some local buildings.  The forest fires have taken out thousands of acreage.  Very sad to witness day after day - it's been weeks now that we've been seeing and smelling the smoke.  Boot Scootin was in just the wrong place at one anchorage, and woke up to find their decks covered in ashes.  Yuck.

Tied up at the GT Club at 3.  It's in White Sound at Green Turtle Cay.  Neat Marina - they have a deal where you "eat and drink your dockage fee"!  Basically, they charge $1.50 per foot per night.  So for the Gemini Dream, that's $63/night.  If you go to their restaurant for drinks and/or food, and spend $63 dollars, your dockage is free.  (Or if you only spend $60, then you still owe $3 for dockage).  So we try them out, and join Dave and Dianne for a fabulous dinner!  Unfortunately, Matt tried to order the porkbelly, but they were out.  So he opted for a surf and turf (so did Dave).  Guess what?  They're out of steak.  (What is it with Matt and Restaurants?????).  We finally all settle on some food they DO have - and have to admit, it was simply outstanding!!!  Dave and I both enjoyed bouillabaisse to absolutely die for!!!  I figured I'd bring half of mine home, but that didn't happen!  I can't believe I ate the whole thing!!!

March 29, 2013

Quiet day today, as it's Good Friday and just about everything is closed around here but the Marinas.  So Dave and Dianne suggest a dinghy ride over to the Marina across the harbour to check it out.  Off we go, and have Bloody Marys on the deck at the Bluff House.  Very nice Marina!  Kind of a low key day today, caught up on some book reading - not much exciting stuff to report today, sorry!

March 30, 2013

Arranged for a golf cart today (one with "good springs", as there will be 5 of us in a 4-man cart!) to go and explore the island.  What a great trip this was!  Most of it was focused in New Plymouth, an historic settlement.  The sights there were wonderful, such a marvelous little town!  Toured the Lowe Museum (tiny, but a nice stop) and the local cemetery (cemeteries down here are quite different from home!).  We drove all over the island, even getting back over to the other side again to visit the Bluff House's bar again.  Stopped for a bunch of photo ops at the beautiful beaches, and pretty much saw everything around.  A very good touring day!



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