Heading home to Grenada

We loved our short sojourn (10 days) in Bequia (pronounced Beck-way) and the trips we made to other parts of St Vincent and The Grenadines, but there is something very homely about coming back to Grenada.

This morning in Tyrrel Bay
Tyrrel Bay, Carriacou

 We arrived late yesterday in Tyrrel Bay, on the island of Carriacou in the country of Grenada, and we will spend a few days here in this relaxed little township before sailing down to the main island of Grenada and home.

Cheryl and the children
Participants of Bequia Reader’s Program
I’m fed and I need a sleep!

Before departing Bequia I participated in the Children’s Reading Program held at The Figtree Restaurant under the strict but caring and loving direction of Cheryl, Figtree’s owner. The children learn English at school and some are really advanced. Others have tough challenges in life; two siblings have cataracts and have recently returned from Virginia in the US where they underwent operations. The young boy (7) in my group was thirsty to learn as a new world has opened up for him but his self-esteem is low as he is behind his peers. His younger sister’s (5) operation wasn’t as successful and she will require more ops. All this whilst being brought up by their grandmother in a tiny shack; their mother has moved to Canada and their father isn’t around. I have included a photo of a baby who was there with her Mum waiting for her older brother. These little ones go part-way to helping me cope without seeing my little Autie! I had a great afternoon with these kids.

Deep in concentration

The time we spent in Bequia gave us an opportunity to do some maintenance on Kool Kat, re-stock our provisions and update my sailing knowledge! Bob Almond, you’ll be pleased to hear my anchoring has improved out of sight but one area I have never tackled is driving the dinghy, or tender. Knowing that we’ll be spending the next three or so years on a boat, I definitely want the independence of being able to go ashore when I want to. So, with that in mind, Mal, being the good teacher that he is, threw me in at the deep end one day and told me to take over when we were half way back to the boat. Boy was that an experience! I think learning to drive a dinghy is a good left brain, right brain exercise. Whilst turning the throttle on the tiller and pushing it in the opposite direction to where I want to go, I had to navigate through boats, buoys and swimmers back to Kool Kat. I was so glad to get back safely and without running over anything! I have improved after more practice and even got it up on the plane a few times but there is still room for improvement!

Mal purchasing our cray

We bought two lobsters (live) whilst in Bequia from the local boat boys; at 15EC/lb each one cost us about $19AU. They were so sweet and fresh!

We left Bequia on Monday and had a beautiful 4-hr sail with both the main and the heady up. We arrived at Tobago Cays, had lunch and then went snorkelling. Magic, the visibility was fantastic. We saw a barracuda, needlefish, stingrays, amongst many other tropical fish, and my personal favourite, the trunkfish; very 3-D (photo courtesy of Google). I know some of you won’t believe this, but whilst we were relaxing after our swim, we witnessed a flying stingray! We’re not sure what was chasing it but it was sure moving fast and became airborne twice!

Trunkfish: I love these little guys!

Beach bar at Salt Whistle

We stayed one night but the weather wasn’t as good the next day so we sailed around to Salt Whistle Bay on the island of Mayreau. I was keen to do some geocaching so we popped into the bar first to pick up the wi-fi. Alas, no luck as the bar didn’t have it and I didn’t have the cache’s coordinates. Met a lovely Polish couple over a beer and had a great chat.

Back on the boat we decided it was a bit choppy so we moved to Saline Bay for our overnight stop. Up early the next day and then off to Clifton on Union Island to check out of Immigration and Customs before leaving St Vincent and the Grenadines and entering Grenada. It was raining and wind squalls were coming through during the 1/2 hr crossing from Mayreau Is to Union Is. n was crowded with yachts and the boat boys were at us to pick up a mooring. The squalls were coming through and every time we tried to anchor, it kept dragging. Until suddenly the port engine stopped and we were being buffeted around every which way. We couldn’t move which was thankful given the wind and the close proximity to other boats. Unbeknown to us, we had picked up a mooring: not at the bow but around the port propeller! Just as all this happened a strong 30 knot squall came through with the boat pointing towards other boats and us being held by the mooring rope on the propeller. We put the starboard engine in reverse to alleviate the pressure on the prop. Other boats dragged their anchors during this time and it was chaos all round. After the squall Richard, a Brit from the kite surfing school who also has the same boat as us, came on board and gave me a hand while Mal dived in and freed the propeller. We were then free and off to anchor somewhere else. With the wind and rain, it was difficult to see the sandy bits on the bottom but we tried two more times – each time the anchor dragged and we finally had to accept the offer of a mooring. We have decided Clifton has a mozz on us so it will be moorings for us there in future!

Mopion Island

After finally checking out, we sailed across to Petit St Vincent (PSV) and then Petite Martinique for refuelling. We sailed between two of the smallest Caribbean islands; Mopion and Pinaese. I think this is the island you were looking for Jo Almond; it only has a thatched hut on it and is surrounded by coral reefs. Pinaese is similar – just sand, no vegetation.

We then enjoyed a beautifully relaxing sail down the west coast of Carriacou and arrived at peaceful, spacious Tyrrel Bay. No trouble anchoring here and then straight in the water for a dip and then into the G & T’s. We were exhausted after our horrendous anchoring episode on Union Island and are happy to spend a few days soaking up the carefree atmosphere of Carriacou.

We’ve got Americans, Paula and Scott on Scherzo, coming over for a sundowner or two at 5pm so until next time, lots of love, Sue & Mal. xx

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