When we left St. Martin for St. Thomas, David and I were on the same page. We would provision like crazy for the Bahamas (since everything is expensive there) and then start making our way back to Texas as soon as there was a weather window.
Once we were back in Red Hook, we made our first of three trips to the grocery store. We were headed back to the safari stop from Cost-U-Less loaded down with food, and a guy stopped to ask where we were headed and said to jump in. We started talking, and he said he was from Ft. Worth, Texas so there was an instant comradery. We told him about our plans, and I mentioned I didn’t want to leave the island. He said, “Why the hell would you go back if you don’t have to?” Our immediate answer was “Jobs.” Then after mentioning that I worked in accounting, he said he was a CPA with his own company and would hire me if he had an open spot. He also said that David could find jobs repairing electrical systems and such on boats. Rusty took us on a quick tour of the nearby private school and yacht club to reinforce the possibility of living there and then dropped us off by our dinghy. We thanked him profusely and made our way back to the boat with a lot to think about.
However, our conversation with Rusty was put on the back burner, and we concentrated on finishing grocery shopping and getting things done on the boat. Two days later we still hadn’t really considered staying in St. Thomas so we headed to Christmas Cove near St. Thomas to spend our last night in the USVIs with friends. We snorkeled in the crystal clear water, and then Elisa and Rudolph from Tulum III came over for some drinks, apps, and dinner. We met them in Luperon, Dominican Republic and became friends after staying there three months for hurricane season. It was the first time seeing them in months, and it was great catching up. I again expressed my reluctance to leave, and after listening to their comments, it made me once again question giving up this life. There are jobs here and we can live rent/mortgage free on our boat because we own it so why not? More talking between David and I still led us going back to the US. The next morning more of the same conversation came up, and as we stood filling out our clearance papers at Cruz Bay in St. John, we were still talking about it. David said he was fine with staying another month and trying to find a job in his field. But it’s me…ME!…who decided to head back. Why after David agreed would I choose to leave?! A place like this has always been where I have wanted to live…beaches…white sand…beautiful water…flip flop weather…all year long. But I know the type of job he wants isn’t here (and believe me I looked at several job sites on-line). So we are heading back because we would have eventually.
|Snorkeling at Christmas Cove|
|The Pizza Pi boat that makes delicious, made to order pizza|
Although I will miss a lot of things I have become accustomed to on this trip, it will be nice to be around family and friends again, have use of our cars ( I haven't driven since leaving Texas), have A/C on hot days, take long, hot showers, have access to fast WiFi whenever we need it, not worrying if the solar panels created enough energy to run our computers, and have a home that doesn't roll or break free of it's grounding.Now we are back in the outer islands of the Bahamas, which are absolutely beautiful. I missed being here. I know other people look at water and beaches and ask, “How do you not get tired of that, especially after a year?” I just don’t. It’s very calm and peaceful, and I enjoy hearing the waves break as I dig my toes into the soft sand and relax.
We arrived at Mayaguana, which has three settlements consisting of a total of around 250 people, on April 4th, checked into the Bahamas, and also bought a new Batelco sim card since the one we bought last April expired after three months of non-use. This time around we didn't have to pay the $150 entry fee since a cruising permit lasts one year, and we checked in on April 22, 2015. Just made it back with a few weeks to spare! We went to Reggie’s to get some reverse osmosis water (we filled jerry cans from his backyard hose) and some groceries. Reggie keeps a small convenience type store, which is the one of the two small grocery stores you will find on that part of the island.
After we got back to the boat, we snorkeled and found some puffer sea biscuits, which we had never seen before. I brought two onboard for my collection since they weren’t alive and also found a lot of bleached sand dollars.
|On the hunt for sand dollars|
|David making sure the anchor is dug in|
|Coral near our boat|
A cold front is supposed to hit tomorrow so we’ll stay tucked away in our anchorage at Port Nelson for a few days until the wind and seas die down.