Friday, February 10, 2012

Keep Calm and Sail On!

Evan and Jessica on an early morning sail to Virgin Gorda.

You might not believe it but it has been a busy week. Last Monday Evan and I finished off the repairs we needed to make on the forestay (the metal wire that holds the mast up on the bow of the boat). Evan has proved himself as a solid deckhand time and time again on this adventure. His tasks go far beyond pulling ropes and folding sails. He is at the point where I can take a rest below and am comfortable with him fully taking control of the helm, navigating and trimming the sails when necessary. On top of that he has been taking care of maintenance on Lizzy Belle like it is his day job. We discuss everything and then execute. Evan has worked both as a carpenter and in a fiberglass plant which makes his skill sets perfect for Lizzy Belle's wood and fiberglass hull. It truly makes life easier aboard a boat built in 1968 with nonstop repairs. I'm not going to lie though, I believe we enjoy fixing her as much as we do sailing her.

Alright onto the good stuff. Last Sunday evening Jessica Myra joined Lizzy Belle's crew. Jess has been a longtime friend and has been hanging out with me since preschool. In between finishing up her Masters in Sweden Jess had some time before she begins her internship in either San Francisco or Boston. Nice work for sure! Jess had been following the blog and I threw it out there for her to join us for a week or two if she pleased. The next email was labelled: I'll be there on Sunday. Good for you Jess for embracing the opportunity and making it happen.

Lizzy Belle anchored in Trellis Bay, Tortolla in 10 feet of water. LB only draws 3.5 feet of water which allows us to anchor where many of the charter boats can't. Every time we drop anchor Evan or I get our snorkel gear and check both anchors. This way I can sleep at night. I still wake up every time it gets windy or rains though.
Not only does Jess have sailing experience but she apparently did her research before flying down and knows all the technical terms. While she's asking me questions like, "Are we on a Broad Reach or Beam Reach Welsford"? I just look at Evan with a smurk and reply, "I dunno, I just do it". Jess has been teaching us the lingo though and we appreciate it.
Sunrise. My favorite sailing is when we get up early before the sunrise and prep Lizzy Belle to take off at first light. I always wake everyone up doing the dishes.
My reflection in the Starboard Cowl Vent. These vents help keep solid airflow through LB to keep her cool. Let me tell you, it is still quite hot in the galley below decks.
A shot from mid mast.
Great light on a great morning, equals an awesome sail.
From the bow looking aft.
Every time we Tack or Jibe I write down our new heading, estimated speed, our compass heading and any other details that seem fit. This way I can log my hours at sea and have proof for when I go for my captains licence.
This log book was given to me by Ramrod's ( Tyler Veinotte's ) mother. Super good gift.

We call this winch "MaryGwen Stackhouse" because she made a great donation last summer to Lizzy Belle and is just awesome like her daughter Gracie. Evan and I were talking about how much better they are than our original winches. Thanks again guys for everything!
Evan on the Tiller. I can tell he is starting to feel Lizzy Belle as we sail rather than just look for problems. Big deal for sure.
Thinking he is a big deal. Hahahahaha
When we sail everything down below goes to hell. We took all the netting down because it was super cramped with it all up. Maybe that was a bad idea...all good though.
Never ending gross feet issues. Whatever, I figure it just adds character.
The Gill Gloves save our hands. Highly recommended for you Pat South.
Alright, Jess bought this Mahi Mahi fish tail fresh right of some dudes boat as they came in from fishing. It weighed three pounds for 20 bucks. I learned how to fillet fish from my grandfather as a kid back in Nova Scotia but wasn't sure how to tackle this one so I had a few locals help me out. Our new friend Dwayne took care of one side and I did the other. It turns out it is the exact same as the small mouth bass at home. Jess made some Avacado Salsa and I cooked up some potatoes while Evan manned the BBQ. We fed Dwayne as well and he said we did a great job. Best meal yet of the trip by far.
We pulled into Virgin Gorda Yacht Harbour to make arrangements for LB's time in the boat yard for the summer. Evan took advantage of the electricity and made some repairs for LB. It looks worse than it is but we definitely had to take a big rotten chunk out of her deck. All fixed up now.
It was like soup in there. Super wet and rotten. This is why Lizzy Belle loves us so much though. We help her and she takes care of us.
They let Evan use the wood shop at the boatyard. I gave the dude five bucks for a beer after work for his time. Super nice people here. It will be a great place to lay LB up for the summer and do repairs next fall.
Evan taking care of LB's forestay back in Road Town. I sat in the shade and drank beer. Hehehehe, it's good to be the captain.
A few of our products from "Arts and Crafts". I made this necklace out of shells from the beach and beads called Tiger Eyes I had purchased a few years ago in Costa Rica. Super happy with this necklace.
Evan relearned how to tie hemp and created this gem. Super good work. He drilled out each bead so he could get the hemp through and used a piece of coral he found on a beach back in Viques, PR. We figure eventually we will start our own company and put the locals out of business. hahahahaha stay tuned to this idea incase we run out of money early.
Chilling on a hammock for the afternoon in Trellis Bay. I told you guys it had been a busy week!
Trellis Bay holds a full moon party every month where local artist's come and do demonstrations and display their work. Super cool stuff and super cool environment to hang out in for an evening.
This Aragorn dude seems to be the big attraction. I'm actually quite inspired by some of his work. His story is; one day a large metal steel ball floated up onto the beach in Trellis Bay. A light bulb went off in his head and he began marking on them with chalk...
As the idea developed he began cutting out some of his drawings with a plasma torch. I think it would be a plasma torch? That or a cutting torch. I'd have to ask Ramrod (Tyler)...
Then the crazy dude made fires inside them and put them in the ocean at every full moon to attract tourists and build a community of artist's in Trellis Bay. Super awesome idea if you ask me.
They had a giant burning man. Which I imagine is the same idea as that festival in the desert near Vegas.
Oh, the giant steel balls are mooring balls for huge container ships. I like how he is using found objects to make art. The story alone is a huge part of the work. Love it!
This is a great pic of it all. I imagine I'll make something like this one day for our beach at home in Mahone Bay. I actually think my old man has one of these mooring balls in our backyard already. I'm going to carve Lizzy Belle in it though.

Alright guys, that is all we have for now. We are headed to the further most island in the BVI's tomorrow morning. It's called Anegada and only has 250 people living on the whole Island. The island is also surrounded by a giant reef and might be tricky to navigate. I'm pumped for the challenge.

Talk soon my friends,

Evan, Jess and Dave

1 comment:

  1. So this is totally new to me! I have no idea how to even word this without feeling like the worlds biggest creep. You guys met my mom in St.Thomas and once she got home I was left with this paper and for me to get a hold of you guys, so im giving it a shot not sure if this will work haha! My mom name was Peggy and im her daughter Haley! Hope to hear from you guys soon! Enjoy St.Thomas so beautiful, so upset I couldn’t make it on the trip with my family!