March 31, 2013 by Last Star blog
Is Georgetown for George…..
We left Farmer’s Cay and headed south for Georgetown in Elizabeth Harbor on Great Exuma; it is about a 40 mile trip and took the better part of the day. The winds were light and we got there about 4:00 in the afternoon. Now Georgetown is one of the most popular stops for Cruisers in the Bahamas. At peak season there can be 500 boats or more here in the harbor. We prefer our stops to be a bit less crowded so we came late in the season hoping there would be fewer folks here. There were about 150 boats here by our count and the place still seems a bit overcrowded.
We settled in for the evening with the intent of getting the dinghy in the water the next day and seeing what made this place so popular. We tuned into the “sailor’s net” at 8:00 to hear what sort of information was passed about during the morning radio broadcast–more on that later. After the 45 minute broadcast we got off the boat and went looking for some of the popular sights here. Now most folks anchor east of Georgetown closest to Stocking Island for the VolleyBall and the “Chat n Chill” beach bar. We put in at the Chat n Chill and got some directions from the fellow there to get across to the Atlantic Beach. We had to follow the trail, cross the water if the tide was low (or swim), rejoin the trail, climb over the hill and go by the Coconut tree and find the beach!!
As usual we were not disappointed with the sites and views.
After our trip to the beach, we had lunch at the Chat n Chill. We hoped for the Conch sandwiches but they had no Conch so it was cheeseburger (in Paradise) and grilled fish of the day. Kaliks all around and a nice conversation with a Canadian couple. After lunch we got back to the boat about 2:00 PM and scratched our heads about the popularity of this place. We didn’t know how anyone could stay here for 2-3 months. Not for us.
The wind was going to come out of the southwest and our current location would be rough that night so we decided to move the next morning closer to Georgetown (GT) proper and check out the city there.
Now GT has a little lake in the middle that can access via dinghy and permit you to shop the stores and tour the area from one easy stop. We took a trip around the lake and took care of some provisioning needs in short order.
After 3 days here we decided to take advantage of a weather window tomorrow and head to Long Island as we aren’t digging the GT scene. It’s just not for us.
Being in GT is like living in a retirement community. There seem to be lots of rules, lots of guys with their pants pulled up nearly to their nipples telling you how and why things NEED to be this way and how the old way was better. TOO many of the conversations start with “well I’ve been coming here since the ’70s…..” You know “that guy” in your neighborhood who has a hissy fit whenever another neighbor leaves out his garbage cans an extra day or fails to shovel the sidewalk for snow in a timely manner and next thing he is getting a flyer (ready made) in his mail box telling him about Home Owners Association rules…. well GT is full of those guys. The morning sail-net is run like that, everyone gets a vote, everyone has to add their comments and 2-cents. For example there was a question on how to get some boat parts shipped here to the Bahamas from the states in a timely and hopefully inexpensive manner (there can be lots of taxes and duties applied to things here). After the question Herman, George, Walter, Raymond, Victor, Edward, Clarence, Martin, and Vernon chime in with their latest and greatest advice, half of them repeating what has already been stated!? And if that wasn’t enough the NEXT day one of the people with obviously little else to do (because they don’t move, navigate, anchor, check the weather, look for food) “researched” the whole thing and then began reading (yes reading) from the official Bahamian customs site on the legalities of importing into the Bahamas. The original poor guy just needs parts for his auto-pilot. Oh after the sailnet the radio is “ablaze” with converstaions like a bunch of college kids on spring break with plans to “get looped” at the Chat-n-Chill, and play volley ball and hit the happy hour but truth be told it’s a ghost town around here at sunset after the vitamins wear out and the supply of Viagra runs low. Sorry to end on a sour note but GT seems to be about people who are fleeing the colder temperatures and are creating their own retirement fief-doom here in the Bahamas.