We're anchored in about 15 feet of water about 300 yards behind a barrier reef that protects the bay from the rollers coming off of the Atlantic. Behind the reef the water is completely calm in spite of the brisk trade winds. It's a beautiful place.
Quinn and I spent this morning on the nearby beach on Green Island while Jen did some laundry on the boat. She couldn't bring herself to pay the $13 (US) per load that the local laundry charges, and so has spent the last few days building up her arm muscles doing our laundry by hand in a big bucket.
Back at the beach, Quinn played in the surf for a while and then picked up all his sand toys, loaded them into his bag and dumped them at the feet of a young English lady sunning herself on a beach blanket about 50 feet away. "Do you want to play with my sand toys?" he asked as I rushed up to apologize for the interruption. Happily, Nina and her sister and father were bored and welcomed the distraction. We chatted while Quinn built Nina a little sand castle and suggested I make several errands to the dingy (to obtain Nina's undivided attention, I suspect).
After the castle was completed Quinn and I took our leave and launched the dingy for the short ride back to Mirasol. On the approach I noticed just how bad the growth on the waterline had become and decided it was time to do something about it. I had planned on snorkeling the reef this afternoon, but that will have to wait.
After a quick inspection it became clear that Mirasol's anti-fouling paint is losing it's effectiveness and I had quite a rash of barnacles to deal with, and not just a quick waterline scrub. Plastic scraper in hand, I started with the propellers and then worked my way to the bow of each hull. It's a long tedious process, but not very hard work. Along with the barnacles and other critters, there was the usual green slime that grows along the waterline to deal with. As all the scraping fell away from the boat, it attracted a big school of bluefish who swarmed around gobbling it all up. It was nice to have company.
While under the hull, I also inspected the zincs and it looks like I'll need to replace the zincs on the saildrive housings soon. I have the replacements on hand so it's time to start looking for a good place to change the zincs. The procedure requires removing the propeller, so I'm hoping to do it in a nice shallow (5' to 8') anchorage with clear water and a sandy bottom. Given that I will be doing this while holding my breath, I want to be able to retrieve anything I drop in the process of diving down, doing something quickly, and then lurching back to the surface to grab a breath. If I'm lucky, I'll be able to locate a dive shop nearby a suitable anchorage so I can rent the scuba gear to make the whole thing a lot easier... Time to dig out the cruising guides and see what I can find. Something tells me another blog will come of all this!