Monday, April 15, 2013

George Town, Great Exuma

We are now in George Town at the southern end of the Exuma chain of islands. For a lot of cruisers this is as far south as they come and spend the whole winter here. The harbour is not very crowded now. A lot have started their journey back to the States or Canada. However, there is a race here next week called the Family Island Regatta where native boats come from all over the islands to compete and the harbour will fill up again. The boats are traditional Bahamian sloops and have massive mainsails. Here is a picture of a past race:

Should be cool to see. Our friend Quinn is arriving on the last day of racing for a 10 day stay.

Speaking of Quinn, a funny thing happened today. We were sitting in our beach chairs on Volleyball Beach while the kids played in the water. A women who was vacationing here walked by and asked if we had been here before. We told her we had just arrived yesterday by boat and she wanted to hear our story. When we told her we were from Littleton she said,"No way. We lived in Evergreen for ten years until my husband, who works for Century Link, transferred to Louisiana." He walks up and I say, "we have a friend ,Quinn, who works for Century Link." He says, "oh yah, I know Quinn. He worked under me for a few years."
Small World...

Here's another good story:

After we left Staniel Cay we headed to a settlement called Blackpoint where we did some laundry and got wonderful homemade bread. We stayed there two days and then moved south about five miles to a place called Jack's Bay to get to a more secluded anchorage where we could make water and not have to worry about everybody around us discharging their heads (toilets) overboard. We anchored and I jumped in the dinghy to go check out a reef a few hundred yards from the boat. I looked at it through the looking bucket and was heading back to the boat so I decided to open up the throttle. As I gunned it to take off I hit two big waves, the boat boat bounced over them, and our 4 month old outboard went flying off the transom and straight to the bottom. F#*K!!!
I immediately threw the anchor out and put on my mask and fins to find it. I dragged the dinghy along until I was on top of it and dove down to tie a line around the handle.
I was barely able to get it back aboard. It weighs 84 lbs. and trying to get it over the side of the dinghy almost swamped it. I then swam back to the boat towing the dinghy and got the motor back aboard Shambala.

I immediately drained the motor oil and about 2 cups of seawater came out with it. I washed the exterior with fresh water and then took the carburetor off and completely disassembled it to clean and dry it. I then put it all back together and added fresh oil. We lowered it  down to the dinghy and it started right up. I ran it for a few minutes and then hauled it back onto the boat to change the oil again. More water came out but not much. I repeated the process four times and by the fourth draining of oil there was no trace of water at all. I treated the whole motor and all the electrical connections with a really good anti-corrosive water dispersant spray we have.  

We've run the motor quite a bit since the incident and it seems to be perfectly fine. I've changed the oil two more times and it's as clean as can be.

We had been towing the dinghy behind us for the four days preceding the disaster and the pounding of the waves must have loosened the clamps that hold it to the transom. From now on as soon as I clamp the motor on I put a padlock through the clamp handles so they can't turn. And no more towing the dinghy with the motor on it.

We keep a handwritten log of everyday we are underway. I always write about what we did or saw that day and up until the day before the above incident the log entries ended with "another great day." As I wrote that the day before, I thought to myself,"will I every have to write 'it was a bad day'?" Well my question was answered the very next day. The log entry ended with "It was a f%^&ing horrible day".
But in the end it all turned out fine. Live and learn.
Our own little island beach at Blackpoint

Sign post on Volleyball Beach

Put-in-Bay, Ohio is right off of Port Clinton,OH where we
started our trip

1 comment:

  1. You are amazing. Just tearing shit apart like you've been doing it your whole life. If you don't have a crappy day in paradise, how are you going to appreciate the great ones?

    Love you guys.


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