Thursday, February 23, 2012

A New Captain, Boule, Blackbeard's Tower

Trying to sail off of Great Harbour, Jost Van Dyke without any wind.

We have been all over the Islands this week and are getting super familiar with the names of places, how the trade winds work, evening squalls, prices for tourist's vs locals and so much more. Last week I left you guys off when we were back in Soper's Hole in the BVI's. From there we crossed back into the USVI's through customs in Cruz Bay. We grabbed provisions and headed straight for a town called Red Hook on the eastern tip of St Thomas Island. The bay is not protected from swells from the North so it was a rough two days but we pushed through as usual. The atmosphere of the town was super cool along with ridiculously cheap "Happy Hour" ( really three or four hours long ) with dollar hotdogs right off the grill. We also found some cool pirate gear in some of the local shops.

I have been scouring old shipyards for any type of dinghy we could possibly purchase to replace our highly missed Sea Eagle. I found Old Yellow here in the back of a rusty pick-up truck at the Independent Ship Yard. After Cathy, the manager of the shipyard, smoked four cigarettes back to back while we negotiated a fair price for the Kayak she just gave up and told me to take it. I thanked her and asked if I could at least repay her in cigarettes and booze. She said, "I drink way too much already" and walked away. I smiled and pulled my new prize off the back of the truck and started paddling towards the dinghy dock. Then I realized the giant crack on the stern of Old Yellow and almost sank.
The view from Lizzy Belle's mast in Great Harbour, Jost Van Dyke.
The beach at Great Harbour.
Although "Old Yellow" was my find I decided it was time for Evan to Captain his own vessel. He has come a long way since he first got his sea legs back in Nova Scotia and he has earned a promotion. So, he is now the proud owner of an old beat up, cracked sea kayak. Congratulations dude! I hope there are no Mutany's on your vessel. Hahaha
Feeling proud of his accomplishment as Captain.
Evan had some work ahead of him. Nothing Duck Tape, Tuck Tape and a little effort can't fix.
The final product! She doesn't take on a drop of water.
I bought the Boule game from Dougie at the Boatlocker in Lunenburg. He let it go for $50 and then later looked it up online at a price of $250. Thanks again hommie!
After about an hour of reading the official rules of the game we were off. Boule quickly draws attention. Here is Greg and Andrew from Toronto, Ontario in an intense match with Jess and Evan. I'm pretty sure the Nova Scotians took care of the business.
An action shot. Like I said, Boule is an intense game. It's hot out there on the beach! hahaha We all played until the sun went down.
These are our judges. Mel got really into his job and made sure we all had cold refreshments. Thanks again dude!
I'm always messing around with the Engine. She's a 28 year old 8 Hp Yanmar 1 Cylinder Diesel. Simple and awesome to learn on. I'm cleaning up making a new gasket seal here for the exhaust.
We woke up one morning and this guy was swimming around Lizzy Belle with a horse. Not sure if this is a common thing or not but it was the first time we had ever seen anything like it. The dude was super happy and as we looked at him speechless and said, "Only in the VI'S" while smiling on the back of his horse.
A hard day at work...
This could possibly be the image that was taken right before I dropped my $2400 L series Canon 14mm lens into 200 feet of water. I looked directly at Evan and said, "Oh My God" and looked down at my camera body which was now lensless. All good though, that's the name of the game. She went straight to the bottom.
A Hermit Crab now has the fanciest home on the reef. Enjoy it buddy!

LB playing chicken with a giant cruise ship. There were 5 of them in Charlotte Amalie this day.

These steps are called 99 steps. I guess the Dutch would bring the stones over as ballast for their boats. They would take them out after crossing the ocean and built these steps with them. Kinda cool.
Blackbeard Pirate Tower. A view from the bay as we sailed in.
We walked up for a closer look but they were charging a ton of money to go in and look. I managed to snap this image through the doorway while Jess distracted the gatekeeper with questions. There was a pretty cool statue of him in the entry way.
Cool authentic pirate treasure for sale. I think the large coins were around six hundred dollars. Too pricey for us but really cool to see.
Lizzy Belle feels at home here in Lindbergh Bay in front of Mike's bar ( guy with the huge catamaran in the past blogs) on the beach. Jess took off today and headed home to Toronto to prepare for her internship in Boston. Good luck Jess and all the best from Lizzy Belle and her crew. It was a time to remember for sure!

As for Evan and I. We are doing laundry, making repairs and cleaning LB up for the arrival of the legend himself. Chris Belts! Looking forward to next weeks adventure.

Peace out my friends,

Welsford and Evan

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