December 9, 2012 by Last Star blog
West End; we’re in we’re out…shake it all about.
So the last time we posted we were checked in at West End and were putting out to be on the anchor to slip a day before we headed south to get Cole.
So yesterday we drug our heels most of the day before we pushed out of Old Bahama Bay Marina. Sort of like asking for the late check out at the hotel. We ran through the village, the bikes etc and after long hot showers–ok mine was not so hot because it’s hot here and why add more heat to my total thermal count and it wasn’t so long because the stall is so small that if the water is running you can’t lather up proper (southern speak) so you have to cut off the water. Since fresh water is so hard to come by here that it is also the proper thing to do, cruisers are the ultimate “recyclers”. We glide out of the slip without any blood loss, yelling or breaking anything on our boat or someone else’s so overall a good launch. We motor out about 3/4 of a mile to an anchorage that is just outside of where we were. 12-ish feet of water, crystal clear, all good. We can see the beautiful home that we saw from the marina, just a different perspective. So the water is so clear here that folks say you should “dive on your anchor” to check it. So I get my kickin’ set of snorkel gear on (courtesy of great friend) and get in the water–slight gasp; it is December after all. I start to kick towards the anchor and find it at the end of the line and chain, a real anchor detective am I! and there it is laying on the bottom doing what it does best–I guess.
Now bear in mind when we were setting it I put a good 12-1500 RPMs in reverse on it and the water was boiling out from underneath, the line was tight like a piano wire etc etc…. all holding. Now 15 minutes later I go below and there sits the anchor and the chain on the bottom. Well that’s sort of how anchors work. A great mystery. Now it is blowing from the East at about 5 knots, the chain is on the bottom and the anchor is holding onto a Bahamian pebble , what am I to do. As long as the conditions stay out of the East we’re good to go.
Now we settle into happy hour–read as snacks to supplement my dinner and replenish me after my amazing “pearl diving” routine–I can hold my breath about 10 seconds, you’d think I was a 2 packs/day smoker for 30 years? As we’re watching the sun and clouds go to sleep here comes two boats to settle in next to us–the drawback of always getting the anchor set early. Others see you and think “oh there’s a good spot ’cause that boats there”. I like to call it the blind leading the blind.
So that easterly breeze is all good but the Atlantic still has a few rollers that it likes to throw around the Bahamas and those rollers are NOT aligned with the wind so we are getting it from two sides; still not too bad. Sun goes down, dinner is down, motion makes Patricia a bit green but not too bad. OK, two episodes of Game of Thrones and off to bed with the boat getting it from all sides. The anchor alarm on the Garmin is on at 100 feet, still quiet , all good. We turn out the lights and the boat is just getting rolled hard about every 90 seconds– total ass. Loud and sloppy. The wind is light, the light rain showers require closing the overhead vents so all the side hatches are open. The open hatches make for a nice carousel for the cats to visit. Sometime in the middle of the night when I’m not sleeping there is a feather poking me in the back of my thigh….more discomfort. No wait, this isn’t my feather bed, what the hell is that? Well it is a June bug! In December? Where did it come from? I grasp the offending varmint before he gets more intimate with me and drop him next to my side of the bed where no sooner do I release him that I realize I have just delivered a toy to the nocturnal miscreant called Mini. OK, find bug again, toss him forward as far as able. Again try and get to sleep. Man it’s hot….. why are we rolling SO much? WTF. Well fast forward to 4:11 and the anchor alarm is singing…I’m up and off to the cockpit as I’ve seen this act before and I know that the two other boats are right behind me. Alarm is right, we’ve moved, the pebble evidently failed. Maybe it is the 14 knot winds (no longer 4-5 Knots) and oh BTW they are now out of the south so we are getting more waves–damn!! The region is hard limestone below and you need sand to set the anchor properly, works best with no wave action. Well I dove on the anchor previously and know that there is more limestone than sand in the area so the best course of action is to start doing some NASCAR driving and just do laps until dawn rather than try and reset the anchor on the limestone below. Patricia and I turn circles, all left turns, and finally try another area about dawn. Well the tide is running, there is about 2.5 knots of current and there will be every 6 hours until the moon leaves its orbit. We are NOT staying here so we are back to the marina. We are in we are out….soon I’ll shake it all about.