Aboard the Sailing Vessel

January 29-31, 2005

Coffee At Sunrise
Coconut Rum At Sunset

Most mornings when we are at anchor, and some mornings when we are docked in a marina, we have a cup of coffee or hot chocolate in the cockpit for sunrise.

Then after an eventful day we have what is known as a 'sundowner'. For us a 'sundowner' is a shot of coconut rum at sunset.

Life aboard Shibumi has changed dramaticaly from our experience last January through last May. The major difference is the cockpit enclosure that Jill made. Until the enclosure was installed Shibumi's cockpit was open on three sides, leaving us exposed to the elements. We often sought shelther below decks due to cold, rain, wind or a combination of the three.

On this voyage we spend most of our time aboard in the cockpit. It doesn't matter what the weather conditions are outside. Our cockpit is dry, generally warm and free from the ravages of howling windstorms.

Now we celebrate the sunrise and sunset in the cockpit nearly everyday.

Jill at the new laundromat in Blackpoint.

Shibumi at anchor near Blackpoint.

The Community of Blackpoint
We arrived at Blackpoint on Great Guana Cay on Friday Afternoon.

The sail from the Staniel Cay area was fabulous. The wind was ninety degrees on the beam about fifteen knots. Shibumi loved it. We shut off the engine entirely and enjoyed a the glorious feeling of sails powering our twenty-ton home through the crystal clear Bahamian waters. The trip seemed too short, as we basked in the true meaning of "Shibumi", 'eloquent silence'.

Blackpoint is the second most populated community in the Exuma chain. Second only to Georgetown.

The night of our arrival we dinghied ashore in some rather blustery winds and were introduced to a very congenial town. It would be difficult to find a more friendly community, anywhere.

Blackpoint is a true out-island community. It has three churches, a vibrant school, a medical clinic, three restaurants, a bar, two grocery stores, a telephone office, two policemen, and the charming "Garden of Eden" which is a driftwood and shell work of art.

During our first night ashore at Blackpoint we visited Lorraine's Cafe and Scorpio's Bar. Both establishements were having 'happy hour'. Crusiers and local Bahamians gathered at Scorpio's until late in the evening enjoying music, a pool table and libations.

Our return trip to Shibumi by dinghy was quite an adventure. First we had a flashlight, many other cruisers at the Blackpoint dinghy dock did not. So, being good mariners, we helped folks from several other boats get aboard their dinghies. They all set off happily to their motherships.

As the saying goes, "..no good deed goes unpunished". There we were, happy that we were able to help. But we were now alone, just the two of us. During the hustle of everyone getting underway someone tripped the anchor that we used to stabilize our dinghy. Our dinghy drifted with the current under the dock. It took Jill and I nearly a half-hour of dock-side gymnastics to free the boat, in the dark, choppy, windy waters, from under the pier.

But that was not the end of the adventure. Wet. Cold. Dark. Windy. It did not take us long to identify Shibumi's anchor light in the distance. The cold choppy waves slapped us repeatedly as we navigated our dinghy back to our mothership.

This is supposed to be fun... Looking back it was more of an adventure then it was an ordeal. So we went ashore again the following night.

How Do You Spell Deja Vu?
Saturday was quite a bit calmer when we dinghied ashore. We made the trip twice.

Early in the day we vistied the laundry and walked around town and met people.

In the evening we went to Lorraine's Cafe for the terriffic barbarque that Lorraine hosted. The place was packed and everyone had a great time.

We were very circumspect when we walked back to the dinghy dock. Our dinghy was fine and we got aboard it right away this time. We spotted Shibumi's anchor light about 200 yards away.

But there is a 'however'. Jim and Sue from "Pitcarin" got their dinghy caught under the dock. They were in the same position Jill and I were in the night before, with two differences. One, the wind and waves were not nearly as intense as last night. And two, a nail in a board under the dock punctured one of the inflatable dinghy's tubes, rendering it useless.

Although we had set our sights on home... we notice none of the other's responding to Pitcarin's pleas for a tow back to their mothership, which was way on the otherside of the large harbor.

Still mindful of the old axion that bit us last night, "No good deed goes unpunished", we turned our dinghy around and picked up Pitcarin's tow line as Jim and Sue hopped aboard our dinghy.

The trip across the harbor was dark, cold and a little wet. David and Stasia from "Two Us" had taken the outboard motor and gas- tank from the Pitcarin dinghy to reduce the weight of the tow. They lead the way with a small light, snaking pass boats acnhored in the harbor, including Shibumi.

"No good deed goes unpunished", kept playing silently in my mind.

Alas, the crew of Pitcarin safely aboard their yacht and the wounded dinghy tied securely to the mothership, Jill and I searched the galaxy of anchor lights on the dark horizon for Shibumi's mast light.

The trip back to Shibumi was long, dark, but uneventful.

And I was finally able to bury that tired, old, and false saying, " ...no good deed goes unpunished".

Shibumi to the left anchored near Blackpoint
Use your browser's back button to select another date