Thursday, January 31, 2013

Boat Yard Time

Sim and I have worked hard to get Alianna back in the water. Her bottom is anti-fouled, her topsides buffed and polished and a new gold boot stripe added. She is looking pretty smart.
We are absolutely itching to get out of the boatyard. It’s been over seven weeks now since the family flew out and Alianna safely stored. This is the longest we have ever been hauled for. But the novelty of peeing in a bucket at night and the climbing up and down the ladder is wearing thin. The cat is a nuisance – constantly wanting to escape to somewhere she is not allowed to go. The emptying of buckets daily for this and that and battle against the mosquitoes which have not been so bad this year but all you need to hear is one little whine past your ear and a little itch on your arm and you are wide awake and frustration sets in. The decks are filthy from all the dust and dirt flying around. But all in all this has been a good haulout. The people at IGY boatyard are very helpful and if you get the right people knowledgeable. This is a good time of year to haul as the climate is that little bit cooler. The toilets despite being a portacabin are kept clean throughout the day. Island Water World and Johnsons are a 5 min walk away. We did most of our own work but did get the yard to do the spit and polish part and we were pleased with what they did. Everyone is friendly and security seems good. This is the second time we have used this yard and we would come here again. They seem to have no problem with us doing our own work and by and large are no differnt in price then the yards in Grenada. There is a lovely little bar/ restaurant in the yard called Mikes Bar it serves cheap beer and good food at the top end of the being reasonably priced range. Sim loved the steak and kidney pies. Right outside Mikes bar is a floating dock that bridges the gap between the yard and the marina it works by pulling yourself along with the ropes. Pretty neat.
So now we are sitting here waiting (as usual) for them to come and tell us it’s our turn to launch but as with all things Caribbean its been delayed and put back and we are starting to wonder if it will happen at all today…..

Monday, January 21, 2013

Back to Reality....

The family at Heliconia House
Everyone has gone home now and Sim and I are back in the boatyard. All we have left are the wonderful memories of a Burr family holiday.
Left to right - Ali, Izzy, Jenny,Dad, Mum, Sim and me. Only missing Michael
The entertaining quiz evenings up at Heliconia House where Mum and Dad showed that their depth of knowledge knows no bounds. The wonderful home cooked meals and BBQ’s that each couple took turns in making. The sumptuous meals we ate out. The chilled out days at the beach having great fun belly surfing on the large north swells rolling into the bay and the days out exploring in the car. I think everyone had a fabulous time and it was great just to be able to hang out with my sisters and their partners who I don’t get to see that often. St Lucia is a truly beautiful island. I love its underdeveloped-ness, with the rainforest right down to the roadside. The trees dripping in fruit and flowers and the rickety little brightly coloured Caribbean houses. It is a lush and vibrant country. The only time we felt a little uneasy was when we wanted to visit an off the beaten path waterfall where the locals suggested we only go down there if we have a gun and a body guard! We decided to give this days outing a miss!
Waiting for the waves at Reduit Beach
We are now back on the boat, in the boatyard. Back to our own little reality; of being frugal with water and electricity – those long hot showers a distant memory. Back to peeing in a bucket at night while we are in the boatyard or the long walk across it if we need to do something more! Back to our life of restrictions that in turn offer us so much freedom. We will miss the house and its amazing garden and of course my family. But boatyard work is calling and its time to prepare Alianna to go back in the water.
Heliconia House
Sim et moi!
Ali et moi
A night out at the Ocean Club Bar
Jen and Izzy
Belly surfing!
Sunny daze!
Marigot Bay where Dr Dolittle was filmed
Marigot Bay
Reduit Beach, Rodney Bay
Reduit Beach
Taking a rest at the botanical gardens
Diamond Falls Botanical Gardens
The amazing Ginger Lilly
My new home!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Christmas, Birthday and New Year Celebrations

We celebrated Christmas in style with Mum and Dad up at Helinconia House. Sim took advantage of the huge kitchen and cooked up a storm with all the trimmings. There was so much food we could have fed a small third world country. As it was, none went to waste – this is us we are talking about! Ali and Michael arrived a couple of days later in time for my birthday where we spent the day at a very beautiful beach down at Anse Chastenet, 2/3rds down St Lucia’s west coast. The water is crystal clear and inviting. Although this beach does have moorings its somewhere we have never stopped before as it always looked so rolly. This exclusive hotel dominates the bay and though despite all beaches being public it is made very clear that we should not disturb these top dollar guests!! We swam and snorkeled and had a lovely lunch at the secluded hotel. The grounds are lovely and the beach a dark, sand tropical paradise. I couldn’t have asked for more. The long drive there and back took us through some amazing countryside and landscapes. St Lucia’s coast line and interior certainly are very pretty if you can see the beauty in the ramshackle look – which I do.
Anse Chastenet
The last week has been spent drifting down to the beach at Rodney Bay. Sometimes Sim and I go and work on the boat and leave the others to their relaxation. We went to the Friday night Jump Up at Gros Islet where a street closes down and food and drink stalls open up offering local delicacies. Ali found it pretty gross to find a whole pig snout in her otherwise tasty pork dish!  Michael has gone back home as he was only out for a week. We had a stunning walk on Grand Anse Beach on the east coast where the turtles lay their eggs – though right now it’s out of season. The beach is wild and windswept – a great beach for beach combing and photo opportunities. It’s been one of my favorite days so far.

Grand Anse Beach on the east coast
Tomorrow Jen arrives and we’ll all journey to the south end of the island to meet her. There is less than 2 weeks left of this family holiday. Sim and I are trying not to get distracted by the boat in the yard and will continue the work when everyone leaves.
The Pitons
Anse Chastenet
Anse Chastenet
Reduit Beach, Rodney Bay
Sim goofing at Reduit Beach
Grand Anse Beach
Mum and Dad on Xmas day
Ali and Michael with fresh coconuts from the garden
Mum, Dad, Sim and me at Pigeon Island
Ali is not s impressed with her snout!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013


It’s out with the old and in with the new as another New Year dawns upon us. This last year was a little oddball for us with not really being sure where we wanted to go, should we stay in the Caribbean and even if we wanted to stay living on a boat. But Alianna continued to be our humble home and with brand spanking new sails has taken us from Grenada all the way to Puerto Rico and back via the Spanish, US and British Virgins and showed us a fabulous time. How on earth could we consider doing otherwise! Then the decision to change boat to carry us on to new adventures has given us the new impetus that we needed. So who knows what 2013 will hold for us and which direction we will take but that is the beauty of this vagabond life…
"Another fresh new year is here, another year to live!
To banish worry doubt and fear,