News 11


Turquoise Lagoons

Tiger checking out the marina

pure nature

what a life

After a rather rough passage, we arrived in Mayaguana, Bahamas, early in the morning. 25 to 30 kts of wind, the reef passage not visible, coral heads everywhere, the anchorage fully exposed, what a day and what a night. The next day we went on to San Salvador, the island where, according to the legend, Columbus first landed in the New World. We checked in with the authorities at the airport (looking like some Mafia place out of a B-class movie), filled in five forms, payed 100 $US for the cruising permit (for what?), and were left to the peace and quietness of an island on the edge of the known universe.Peace and quietness are one thing, but sometimes you need to stock up. So, on we went to Cat Island, to discover one of the smallest, most secluded marinas we had seen so far: Hawks Nest Marina at the southern tip of this scarcely inhabited unspoiled idyll. Only to be told, that there is no ATM, no bank, hardly a grocery store, and the only place, where we can pay with credit card, is the marina associated resort, the facilities whereof we could of course use without extra charge. The next 3 days we overindulged in a very special holiday, relaxing, snorkeling, scuba diving (Gabriele met her first hammerhead) and being treated to breakfast, lunch and dinner without so much as moving a finger. Tiger liked it too. And those rum punchesBack to reality, we moved from anchorage to anchorage way up north in the lee of Cat, where we sometimes had so much wind, that we couldn't even leave the boat. Next followed the 30 hour passage to Marsh Harbour, Great Abaco. Nice sailing, if it hadn't been for the reef passage at the end of it: no buoys, no markers, just what they call eyeball navigation, a nice euphemism for guessing. And, forget about GPS, most of the surveys are 19 th century.For the next week we enjoyed daysailing between Elbow Cay, Man o War Cay, Green Turtle Cay and Allans-Pensacola Cay. We spent a lot of time snorkeling on the outer reef, being fascinated by all those colours (and the sharks, of course).All too soon it was time to move on, 300 nm to Jacksonville, Florida. We were very sad to leave the tropics, knowing, that it would be a long time till we were bound to experience such beauty again...

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