Our next destination? Cane Garden Bay on the island of Tortola. Viewed by some as one of the more beautiful areas of the BVI, the bay has beautiful white beaches rimmed with palm trees and colorful hillside homes. There are several shops and bars on the bay, but because it is so close to Road Town, the capital of the British Virgin Islands, its touristy and more commercialized. We spent a quiet afternoon walking the beach, had refreshments at a beachside bar, and then returned to the boat for dinner. I think we were starting to wind down from our week on fun. It seems that bedtime came earlier and earlier. LOL!
Almost at the end of our adventure, we would spend our next to last night at Great Harbour Bay on the island of Jost Van Dyke. It was a short, uneventful sail so once again we were able to enjoy the scenery, and I think a matey or two actually took a nap. After mooring, the plan was to go ashore, have a drink and make dinner reservations, return to the boat to clean up, and then go back ashore for dinner. But once we got ashore, it started to rain, so we said what the heck and grabbed a table at Foxy’s where we would have dinner and simply drank the afternoon away. From our vantage point at the bar, we watched the chef bar-b-que the meat for that night’s meal, and after spending the afternoon smelling the tantalizing aromas, we were more than ready to eat. Foxy’s dinner was an all-you-could-eat-in-one-trip buffet, and people come from all over the island to eat at there. The food was wonderful, the atmosphere was awesome, and the drinks were plentiful. Making memories with our friends…priceless!
Road Town, Tortola
On our final day of sailing we would make the short trip back towards Tortola. We had the option of mooring off-shore for the night and returning to the charter marina in the morning or we could go back to the marina now and dock the boat. All week we had been without air conditioning and because most nights it rained, we had to keep the hatches (windows) closed, so getting a full night’s sleep had been difficult. After a little discussion, we decided to go ahead and go back in and hook up to shore power (and a/c). That would also give us more time to pack our stuff, clean up the boat, and relax a little before beginning our trip back to the States.
It was on this final leg of our journey that I finally took the helm. Yep…wimpy me had not yet had a turn at the wheel (I had been working the lines with Blanche). It seemed way too complicated for me to read the wind and the water, know when to fall off or head up, watch the tailings for wind direction, etc. There was no way I wanted to heel over like Dan or catch a wind or current like Don and Dee did, but finally I gave in….for all of about 15-20 minutes. When the sails started flapping and I had a hard time keeping on course, I was done. But I did it and can proudly say I sailed a 43 foot vessel.
On Sunday, May 22, we left our home on the sea. What an awesome time it had been spending 10 days in paradise with our friends. The experience was unforgettable and we have memories to last a lifetime. We are so grateful that our friends Dan and Dee and Gary and Blanche gave us the opportunity to join them, and we look forward to our next adventure together.