Sunday, April 22, 2012

Bequia, St Vincent and the Grenadines

Here's something I wrote back in December...

The weather has us pleasantly pinned in Admiralty Bay, Bequia.  Our plan had been to sail to St Lucia to spend Christmas and New Year's Eve in a marina.  However, the winds piped up to a gale and we saw no need for a hard passage.  Instead, we've settled into Bequia for the duration.  Admiralty Bay in Bequia is one of my favorite anchorages in the Windward Islands.

Kathy and John, our friends on Oceana who we met in Rock Hall, are moored next to us, but you can't see them in this picture.  They arrived from Grenada the same day that we arrived from the Tobago Cays.  On Jen's direction, we selected a mooring tucked up close to town.  I might have grumbled a bit about why we weren't anchoring out in the bay where it was free instead of paying for a mooring.  A little later, when I noticed that Oceana had chosen to anchor in the bay outside the mooring field, I might have grumbled a bit more loudly.  Jen pretended not to hear.

Bright and early the next morning, Oceana joined us in the calm, but not free, mooring field after a sleepless and rolly night.  I pretended I hadn't been grumbling the previous day, but I'm certain I received a few "I told you so" looks from Jen.

We had a couple of equipment failures on our way from Grenada to the Grenadines.  First, our water maker's main pump controller burned out.  After a long call with the manufacturer, they determined it must be the motor controller board, which I did not have a spare for on board because according to the manufacturer... they NEVER fail.  Hmmph.  We made due with the water we had on board until we arrived in Bequia, where we were able to purchase water and order a replacement motor controller to be shipped in.

Bequia has no source of ground water.  For this reason all the water used on the island comes from rooftop catchment systems (fancy name for a tin roof, gutters, and giant plastic storage tanks).  When you need to purchase water, they bring it out to you on a barge and pump it into your tanks.  The water we purchased from these guys was $0.32 per gallon.  They claim it is filtered...   We were happy when replacement part for the water maker arrived so we could make our own water again!

The next problem was the Raymarine E120 chart plotter.  It's LCD display's back light failed, making it unreadable in daylight.  We have two chart plotters, one at the navigation station and one at the helm, so with the helm's display nonfunctional, were were still able to manage just fine.  It helped that we were in familiar waters.

I sent the E120 Chart plotter display to the US for repair, and they turned in around very quickly.  It arrived back in Bequia in good shape and I re-installed it without a hitch.  It was a great stroke of luck to have been able to receive it here in Bequia instead of waiting until St Lucia.  Raymarine again came through with a quick repair when I needed it.  Too bad I need it so often!

Mechanically, we're happily back up to 100% (or thereabouts) which leaves me wondering what is going to break, plug, or leak next.   Probably Christmas Eve.   :)

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