We anchored at our usual place, and did all the things necessary after a trip, laundry, groceries etc. The first night was fine, the next day we docked at our marina to get water and engage the nice guy Vivien (it must have a different meaning in the Caribbean) to scrape the bottom of Ruyam, and spent the night there. Early in the morning, we left. Al thought that we should get inside the breakwater at the harbour, since the winds started to pick up. We tried three times to set the anchor in a very crowded small area, but decided to get out, seeing that the anchor dragged and put us in close proximity with two other boats. Better outside we thought, and anchored in our usual pace, just outside of the breakwater.
I can’t say it was a good decision. During the first night, the sea got so high that we constantly rolled from side to side. I thought it would end in the morning, but no, there was no break from the high wind and high seas. Our dinghy rides become perilous and very wet. After the night, I thought we should go to shore, and explore the beaches from land, since the beach we usually used was smack in the wind. While looking at the chart, Al remembered having heard that Cane Garden Bay, situated at the west end of Tortola, was a nice spot. When we checked the guide book for BVI, we saw that it was recommended only when there were no north swells. So we hired a taxi to see how it looked.
When the taxi brought us down the mountain we saw the bird-eye view of the bay, which was stunning. So calm, so pristine, and so crowded with smart boaters. Almost all the mooring buoys were taken, although the long, sandy beach was almost deserted. The bars/restaurants lining the beach were almost empty in the afternoon. Then I saw that happy hour in one of them was starting at 3:00 pm. I guessed that the place would become alive after that hour.
We made the essential inquires about the services available, and learned that there was water and fuel at the municipal dock, a laundry place, WiFi at the bars and two grocery stores. Well, who needs Road Town, we could stay there until the time comes to make the passage to St Martin/Sint Maarten.
I was thinking of staying that night at the small hotel (nothing fancy), but Al thought we should bring the boat there in the next morning. So we returned to Road Town for another night of violent rocking. It spoiled my appetite so much that we had to chuck some of the food I prepared for dinner. I almost never do such a thing, after spending money and effort in buying and transporting the ingredients and preparing the meals. So, it was a manifestation of my discomfort, and Al apologized for not listening to me to stay there at night and come back in the morning, to get the boat.
Anyway, around 7:00 am, we started our engines, and went underway towards Cane Garden! The wind was strong on our back, so the two hour trip was not all that bad. I think I am getting used to the beating, and if there is a valid reason for taking a trip, I can endure it better.
Since we were so early in arriving there, we were able to choose a nice mooring close to the beach, and settled down. Many more boats came after us, and all the numerous moorings got taken.
I think this bay is what Caribbean is all about. The water is like an aquarium, clear to the bottom, with lots of birds feeding on the numerous fish. One gets startled while swimming, when the pelicans dive suddenly all around. I also saw a brown bird which sounds like our Canadian goose, but looks smaller. There is so much activity around, it is really entertaining.
Al had been checking the weather every day, and finding out that the expected storm was being postponed to later in the week. We came here on Saturday, thinking that it was imminent on Sunday night, but nothing happened until Tuesday morning. In the meantime, we decided that taking a mooring was too expensive, and set out anchor after the first night, however, on Tuesday morning, swells started to roll us a bit, winds turning to north. I thought it was prudent to pick up a ball, after tinkering with the anchor several times, seeing that it had dragged some, when wind started to create twisters around us.