March 10 to 13th

March 10th

Antigua Nelsons dockyard

Paul and I had a chat to the rower who just rowed across the Atlantic. He said he was pretty sore. He commenced the challenge as a single rower but half way across had electronic problems and had another guy dropped off to assist him complete the crossing. They saw a great white shark at one point, and also nearly capsized a few times. He told us the boat was for sale its price was $35,000 but we could have it for $25,000! Thanks but no thanks!

Paul, Maree and I had to go into customs and immigrations to get Paul and Maree off the crew list of Southern Star. I had already typed up and printed an official letter which was required, and it took about 20 minutes and we were done.







 We all walked to catch a bus into St Johns. We got an offer from a taxi driver as we walked out of Nelsons Dockyard that we couldn’t refuse. He was 61 years old, with his dreadlocks up in a cap and was absolutely hilarious. He had us in fits of laughter the whole journey. It took about half an hour to get to St Johns.







To be honest we were all disappointed, there was not much there except narrow streets, old buildings and there were 3 cruise ships in the port and the streets and shops were packed. We strolled through the markets they had some nice fish but they were covered in flies. We saw the huge statue of the first President of Antigua. We couldn’t find a nice café for a coffee so we caught another cab to go a supermarket we had been recommended called woods.


Wow, this is the best stocked supermarket we have seen for a while. We even managed to get Robbie some kippers!! We always look for them but have never seen them. We had one very full trolley and the total bill was $1951 EC! We did have 4 bottles of wine in there, but no beer. It was good to be able to stock up with quality stuff. I even got 2 large punnets of strawberries, one of which we had for dessert and they were absolutely gorgeous.

Another taxi back to the boat for $40 EC so all in all in was an expensive shopping trip. We quickly unloaded and put away the groceries and walked over to Falmouth Harbour for lunch. They have a few nice restaurants there and sat upstairs overlooking the marina and had a couple of drinks. We all ordered starters, spring rolls, duck liver pate, calamari, tiger prawns, chili and garlic prawns and a brie cheese with caramelised onions. It was the perfect amount and the dishes were all extremely good. Paul and Maree paid for lunch which was very naughty of them, but also very generous. They have been so generous while they have been with us and just the very best guests. We are going to miss them a lot. I will miss arguing with someone at the grocery counter!

We walked back to the boat and Maree taught me how to cut Robbie’s hair. (Maree owns a hairdressing salon) I know from my previous attempts it’s not easy but it was great to see how a pro does it and hopefully I will remember it for next time! We then relaxed and sat on the fly bridge with a few drinks for the last time. We cooked some of the fillet steak we had brought today and it was melt in the mouth. We had some strawberries and coconut ice cream for desert, this was the best!

We have had so much fun with Paul and Maree and there were times we were almost rolling around on the floor with laughter. They are now going onto the USA and hiring a motorhome until the end of the month, to cruise around and enjoy the sights.

March 11th

It was a bit of a slow start to the morning and of course a bit sad also as its Paul and Maree’s last morning. Maree cooked breakfast Avocado, tomato and cheese on toast it was very yum. I will miss her help!

The morning flew by very quickly while Paul and Maree packed and sorted themselves I did the washing and not much else really. We walked them to the taxi stand and said a very sad farewell. We spent the rest of the day washing and cleaning the boat inside and out. We walked over to Falmouth Harbour and went and said Hi to Sean on Kapowai and both thought we might check out the seafood night in the restaurant right at the back of where Southern Star is berthed. We also checked out a new data and phone service called Roaming experts at one of the Yacht services who is an agent for them. Sounds very good, 10gb data for 100 British pounds per month and works in most countries around the world. We can’t connect until Monday though. Robbie spoke to the guy in the UK and he will email us more information on it. We can maybe do voice and data.

Back to the boat where we decided on an early dinner we cooked Mahi Mahi in Panko breadcrumbs with salad, watched a movie and were in bed by 9pm, we were exhausted.




March 12th We woke bright and early (well 6:30am is early for us now) and had a quick cup of tea and then walked out to the fort on the peninsula of English Harbour. It was nice to see something so old still standing. The guard house blew away in the hurricane in 1751 and was rebuilt. The powder magazine is a small building adjacent to the guards house and was built in 1811. It is bomb proof and can hold 300 barrels of gunpowder. There was a guy praying out loud in there as we walked past so we didn’t go in.

It was a great view out to sea and was quite calm and peaceful. Back for breakfast and Robbie tried the kippers and they got a thumbs up. Jessie – maybe you won’t have to bring kippers after all!! Everyone who comes to stay gets a request to bring kippers for Robbie. Kristie is the favourite so far because she brought him 19 tins!! No one else except Robbie likes them and you just about need a peg on your nose when he opens the tin!

We had to be out of the marina by 12 so we filled up with water and I did a load of washing and we went and brought 2 days of hothothot data to last us until we can get the roaming expert connected on Monday. We departed right on 12 after paying the $100 US charges for water and electricity for 4 days, which is not what you would call cheap but that’s how it is.

We went out the entrance to empty the black tank and it was very rough and roly, I was pleased to come back in the calm of the anchorage. It is still very tight with quite a few yachts in here. We hadn’t even got the anchor down and I saw a turtle.

Well the Hothothot internet is NOT HOT! It is bad so we decided to go ahead and sign up for the Roaming expert. Robbie dropped me into the marina and I walked over to the yachting agent to collect the sim card. We completed the forms online and it will be hooked up first thing Monday morning. Hopefully this is the answer we have been looking for, for continuous fast internet! (Fingers crossed)

On the way back to the boat we stopped in at the beach bar run by an Australian lady Rachel, who welcomed us to Antigua on our arrival. It was very pleasant sitting on the beachfront and we met a young Australian couple who work for the National Australia Bank in New York.

March 13th Happy birthday to me! I was spoilt by Robbie and he cooked me poached eggs for breakfast. I tried to get on facebook, could see I had over 70 messages but could only download about 4 or 5. So frustrating! Emails came through OK.

We decided to clean the bottom of the boat as it was a calm day and the water was beautiful and clear. First of all Robbie did a snorkel and he came up with 2 mask and snorkel sets and a pair of polarised sunglasses. The previous boat must have left them out and they blew off or something, as they did not look like they had been in the water very long. A good score!

Robbie hooked up his hookah diving system and I just snorkelled and did the water line. It only took us a couple of hours. Southern Star has a lovely clean bottom again. It’s surprising how fast it gets growth on it in the warmer waters. We saw 2 turtles together and also dolphins swimming past. Very nice.

 


We had lunch on the boat and then we went into English Harbour and met Martin and Bridgit off MV Moonrise, another Nordhavn 47. We took a taxi up to Shirley Heights, where every Sunday they have a live band and there are fantastic views over the harbours. We could clearly see Southern Star and we could see over to Falmouth Harbour, but we could not see Moonrise, she was behind a hill.



It was a gorgeous setting for a live band and they also had food available, grilled chicken and ribs or hamburgers. Robbie had chicken and ribs and I had chicken, Martin and Bridgit had the burgers. The food was good, the band was good and it was a great atmosphere. We watched the sun set and then caught a taxi back to Falmouth Harbour where we could sit in a restaurant with a nice view over the marina and talk in peace.

It’s great to be able to swap experiences and information with other 47 owners.

We were pretty tired so we farewelled Martin and Bridgit and returned to the boat where after a while I was able to get some more Facebook messages but it was painfully slow.

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