Saturday, May 19, 2012

Swimming with Pigs and Sharks

Long Island was our first stop in the Bahamas. We met up with Tiger, my green-haired buddy, and walked to Dean's Hole, the deepest known blue hole filled with salt water in the world. We swam over the 663 ft water-filled hole and tried (unsuccessfully) to catch a glimpse of the bottom. Leaf Cay was a nice island with endangered lizards on it that scared Mom to death. She refused to be anywhere on the island with them. Stanley Cay had swimming pigs. They were hairy and loved to head-butt dinghies. They were incredibly fast swimmers, but looked out of place in the water. There also was shark. It's cool to be able to say that I've swam with pigs and a nurse shark at the same time. We went to the Thunderball Grotto. It was a underwater cave filled with fish. It was cool, you couldn't move without touching at least one fish. There was an underwater entrance, too, that I swam out of. We then went to Warderick Wells. There we climbed up Boo Boo Hill with Tiger from sv Alexina, and Tristan, and Raphael the French Canadians from sv Raftan. We wrote Borealis on a piece of driftwood and left it on the pile where many other cruisers left their mark also.  We then played on kayaks that were available from the Exuma Land and Sea Park. Tiger, Raphael, and Remi, the explorers aboard the kayak, Swallow, owned Kayak Island, Seagull Island, and Rock Pool Island. Tristan and I, the pirates aboard Amazon, stole Swallow and wouldn't give her up until they gave us Seagull Island. Our island, Blue Island, was taken over by ladies in bikinis off a big motor boat.

We traveled up the Exumas to the Abacos and provisioned in Marsh Harbor, which is a big town Bahamas-wise. We then went on a passage up to the US. It took 3 days.

Being at sea, or being on passage, can be very boring. Often you can't see land and,  and depending on the conditions, can be very uncomfortable when the swell is up. Most of the time the ports have to be closed so water can't come in the boat. It gets very stuffy on board, especially when the engine is on. Being on passage can also be fun because it usually means that you're going to a new place. Also, it's a great time to watch movies. Most people appreciate things a lot more on passages, like chips and cookies. Being on passage can be boring or fun, depending on how you like it.

It was sad to go back to the US because I like the Caribbean a lot. It was also nice to go back to the US because you can get almost anything, bagels, chips, shorts, you name it, the US has it. One thing that was definitely a downside in North Carolina, where we made landfall, was the cold weather. It was about 56° here in the morning. Unfortunately, all my jeans either shrank a lot, or I grew a ton because I don't have that many that fit me. Luckily I spent two days of the passage knitting a wool hat that I've been wearing. Remi is jealous of it and sometimes gets to wear it. I hope it gets warmer soon.

Catchin' a Ride

A Lionfish


Driftwood Signs

Tristan paddling while I talk to Tiger, Remi, and Raphael on the bow.



(P.S. My hair is still green! It has been over a month and a half and my hair is still green. At least it faded a bit, now it's just been-in-the-pool-to-long-green, not something-is-in-this-water-that-is-not-normal-green.)

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