Liming in Trinidad!

Blog 4

After 3 weeks in Grenada we headed back to Trinidad; we motor-sailed most of the way because when we sailed we were heeling at 40% (and Mum didn’t like it). It was good to be able to catch up and jam with a few friends who had arrived while we were in Grenada (Terry from Libertine and Gerard from Saltwhistle).

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Jammin’.

There was a charity cook up (to raise funds for a Christmas dinner for the poor) in Powerboats one afternoon. There were stalls with local food and drink, boat stuff and clothes, and a local band came and played Parang music.

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Powerboats in Powerboats.

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The Parang band.

A few days after arriving in Trinidad, weather deteriorated and by the time it improved it was almost Christmas so we decided to stay. Anita (formerly from Orion) joined us for a surprise visit.

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Reindeer Bethany putting up the Christmas decorations.

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Dad and me (Santa and his elf).

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Cape with her Christmas Heineken flag.

We were given some fish by some friendly fishermen.

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The piece of tuna was 70 cm long — not sure how long the whole fish was!

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Tuna steaks.

A few days before Christmas we hired a car to do some shopping, and to visit Fort George and Edith falls; we weren’t disappointed.

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Port of Spain from Fort George.

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‘See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil.’

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Bamboo on the way to Edith falls.

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Edith falls is the highest waterfall I have ever seen.

After Christmas, the rest of the week followed with lots of parties, eating and drinking.

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Limin’ with our Trinidadian friends. (Liming is getting all your friends together to eat, drink and talk junk).

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The boats rafted together.

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Me dancing — something hardly ever seen!

 

 

We went to Chacachacare for a few days. On the way we were escorted by about 40 dolphins, possibly Bottlenose dolphins.

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After staying in Chacachacare for a few days we moved around to Scotland Bay for more limin’.

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All the boats rafted up together — a long lime!

We saw 2013 out and 2014 in at a party in a friend’s house, accompanied by a pig roast and lots of flares.

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The pig in roasted format (delicious).

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Bryn setting off a flare.

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Interview with Vidya Jeremiah-Pettersson

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Vidya and her husband, Kenneth (EL CORDERO) came into Coral Cove in the berth opposite us. The boat was dressed with flags and the local press were here to greet them – it turns out that coming into Trinidad completed their circumnavigation. I interviewed Vidya about their travels.

What was your route?

Originally we started from Sweden in 2003, but I count my circumnavigation as starting from Trinidad (in 2004). From Sweden we went down the French canals into the Mediterranean, Spain and Gibraltar before heading to the Canaries, and then going across the Atlantic to Trinidad. We stayed in Trinidad for the hurricane season. In November 2004 we headed to the Venezuelan islands, Bonaire and Curacao, Cartagena and Columbia, and the San Blas islands (which are part of Panama).

The following spring we went through the Panama Canal and out into the Pacific, where we visited the Galapagos Islands, French Polynesia, Tonga, the Cook Islands and Fiji. Most cruisers head to New Zealand for the hurricane season, but we didn’t fancy the cold so stayed in Fiji, which we loved. The culture and people were very like Trinidad.

From Fiji we carried on to New Caledonia, Papua New Guinea (not the main island but little archipelago, called the Louisiades Archipelago), and through the Torres Strait. After that we went to Indonesia and cruised around the islands, eventually pushing on Singapore, and up the Malaki Strait to Malaysia, Thailand, and India.

Many boats now choose to around the Cape of Good Hope due to piracy, but piracy wasn’t such a big issue then and we decided to go up the Red Sea, visiting Yemen, Sudan and Egypt before heading into the Mediterranean and Greece, mainland Italy, Sicily, Sardinia and France. We headed north to Sweden via the French canals, and this time stayed about 4 years. My husband is Swedish, so we took the opportunity to sail in Scandinavia, work to top up the cruising fund and I learned Swedish.

In 2012 we started back south via the French canals into the Mediterranean, spending the winter in Spain, after which we went from the Canaries to the Cape Verde, and back to Trinidad. So I count my circumnavigation from Trinidad to Trinidad but my husband counts it from Sweden to Sweden! We visited between 40 and 45 countries, depending on how you count them.

Did you like sailing in the Mediterranean?

The Mediterranean offers many different cultures with lots to see but the sailing is not always the best; there is either no wind or too much wind, and it is usually on the nose!

How many years did it take you to go around the world?

We started in 2004 and came back in 2013 so it took almost 9 years, but we were in Sweden for 4 years, so basically the sailing itself took 5 years, but from Trinidad to Trinidad took 9 years.

Which place did you like the best?

There are many places, but I guess Fiji because we met a lot of lovely people there. We became friends with a great Indian family so almost every Sunday we would cook with them and spend time together, so for us Fiji was No.1.

How long did it take you to cross the Pacific?

We did a relatively fast crossing, taking about 6 months.

How long did it take you to cross that Atlantic?

From the Cape Verde to Trinidad it took us 21 days, because we didn’t have much wind. Normally this crossing takes between 16 to 18 days, but we were slow because we had almost no wind for a week.

Would you do it again and if so would you do anything differently?

Yes I would do it again. However, I would like a bigger boat. Ours is comfortable for two, and ideal for the French canals, but I would like to have more room so that friends and family could visit. The second thing I would like is a little more money, because we were working with a tight budget, so some things I wanted to do, we couldn’t afford to do.

What type of boat do you have?

It is an old Swedish design – an Allegro. My husband built it himself, including the woodwork, the stainless steel, and the fiberglassing. She is just under 10 metres in length. She is called El Cordero, which means ‘the lamb’ in Spanish, as my husband used to be a sheep farmer.

Where –or what – next?

We don’t have any definite plans, but we want to explore the Caribbean. Our other plan is for me to get a job!

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Vidya and Kenneth.

Nothing on a boat can’t be fixed with duct tape, batteries or glue

Blog 2

So on my last blog I said that we had moved over to Mount Hartman Bay for the weekend but I didn’t explain why. Well it was getting rolly in Prickly Bay, and there was racing on Saturday morning (which Bryn and I wanted to join in with), as well as that, all our friends are over in Hog Island, which was now only a short dinghy ride away.

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Mount Hartman Bay.

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Inside the reef was like a different world.

So early on Saturday morning we got up and went over to Clarkes Court Bay to see if we could get on a team for the racing. I got on the team Staut whilst Bryn got on the team Happy Hour Gang. The first race didn’t go well; Bryn’s team and their opponent collided before they had even passed the start line, and Bryn’s team got disqualified. The boat that had been hit had a bit of damage, but nothing that couldn’t be fixed with duct tape! They got the boat alongside the barge, lifted the fibreglass deck piece up and back into place and duct taped the damage – good as new.

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The damage.

As that team had been disqualified it meant no more racing for them, so Bryn ‘jumped ship’ to team Italien (that was how they spelt it). My team raced next, against Palm Tree Marine, and I have to be honest, we annihilated them and came first by more than a minute. Team Italien raced next and came first in all their races until the semi-finals when they lost to a semi-professional team. My team came second overall, but it was still good fun and I got a certificate and a beer.

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Coming in after the finals.The team I was on.

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Me with my certificate and beer!

Late Sunday morning there was a jumble sale at Secret Harbour Marina. I took some Turk’s head key rings I had made and sold some of them. In the afternoon there was a jam, so we got together with a few other musicians and played; I play the flute, Dad plays electric bass guitar, Bryn plays electric guitar, Mum sings (and we need a bigger boat for all the instruments)!The jam

Eva off the boat Music came over to Mum at the end of the jam and told her that Bryn and I were very enthusiastic but bad at volleyball, and she offered to teach us. So on Monday morning all of us kids got together and went to the volleyball clinic that she ran. She gave us a lessons just before every volleyball match, and I have to admit, we have all really improved. I hit the ball in the right direction regularly!

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Bryn catching the ball.

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Me about to hit the ball (in the right direction).

Prickly bay at dusk

Prickly Bay at dusk.

Yet another caribbean sunset

Yet another Caribbean sunset.

Christmas tree Tiki bar

The Christmas tree at the Tiki bar, Prickly Bay.

Trinidad to Grenada

Trinidad to Grenada

Blog 1

On the 20th of November 2013 we left Coral Cove marina and headed for Scotland Bay, which was about 1 hour away. After putting the anchor down and having a quick swim we had lunch and slowly got the boat ready to go.

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A panorama of the shore of Scotland Bay.

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And the hills surrounding the Bay.

At around about 18:00 we upped anchor and headed out of the Boca and set our course for Prickly Bay, Grenada. Leaving Bryn and Dad on watch I went and got some rest before my watch.

I woke up when I heard the alternator belt squeaking down in the engine room, then silence as Dad turned then engine off. It turned out that the hose holding the cooling water for the engine had slipped and had rubbed through on the alternator, leaking water onto it. We fixed up the pipe with lots of rescue tape and a bit of duct tape, then we decided it would be better to go back to Scotland Bay and get some more pipe and fix it properly.

Dad went and got the pipe as soon as Budget Marine opened in the morning while Mum, Bryn and I cleaned the boat and relaxed. As soon as the new piece was on we left.

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The view from the boat, early in the morning

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The shore of the Boca; the land under the clouds is Venezuela.

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The rock in the middle of the Boca.

We had to motor sail to Prickly Bay, as the wind and waves were coming from ahead of us, and along the way we had squall after squall. We caught a small fish, unfortunately it was small so we threw it back.

We arrived in Prickly Bay at about 07:00 in the morning, just in time for the net! Mum, Bryn and I listened to the net, put the main sail away and cleaned the boat while Dad went to check in, then after breakfast we rested.

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The welcoming sight of Grenada.

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All the boats at anchor in Prickly Bay.

The weekend went by quickly, on Saturday Bryn and I went and met up with some of our friends over in Hog Island. We went swimming, caught up on stuff and had a go on a doughnut off the back of Sailing Diver’s dinghy. Closely followed by Sunday when we went and played volleyball with Emma from Day Dreamer.

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The houses around Prickly and Mount Hartman Bay are very pretty and different.

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I think this building is a hotel, if not, it’s a very impressive house!

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The walk to Mount Hartman is pretty.

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There were lots of colourful flowers and bugs along the side of the road.

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The view from the old hotel at the top of the hill on the way to Mount Hartman was quite breathtaking.

There is volleyball every Tuesday, Friday and Sunday, as long as there are people around to play. We try to go to all of them — practice makes perfect!

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Volleyball at Mount Hartman.

We stayed in Prickly Bay for a week before heading over to Mount Hartman for the weekend.

 

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A panorama of Prickly Bay.

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A beautiful Caribbean sunset.