The Adventures of CS33 Borean
2003 - 2004


Instalment 11 - March 29th, 2004
Hope Town, The Bahamas

to read past instalments, click here to go:
to the Borean log list


(Occationally, editorial comments from Don of S/V Destiny Calls, host of this web site and southern waters frequenter, will appear in green italic)


Eleventh Installment
M
arsh Harbour (Again!)
(A reminder please do NOT send images by email. Only send TEXT!!!)


Hello all.

The Bahamas leg of our trip is near it’s end. We are presently in Marsh Harbour waiting on a weather window. The winds are strong and makes moving about a little difficult. Most cruisers are hunkered down , and trips into town aboard the dinghy are few and far between. Getting around is a very wet affair, with Janette wearing her foul weather gear to ward off the waves. There are many boats that have arrived recently from the Exumas, that are also home bound

The weather here recently has been very dry and blustery. For the past couple of weeks columns of smoke can be seen all around, as brush fires burn out of control. This is not a pretty sight. Many of these fires have threatened a few homes in the area. There is very little in terms of fire fighting equipment. Marsh Harbour does have a volunteer force with a pumper truck, (only ONE) but when they have used all the water that it holds , they must turn around and get a refill, and the water is not always nearby. On the morning radio net there have been calls for boaters to lend a hand. If the wind was blowing from the wrong direction , smoke found its way to the anchorages

These past weeks we have visited old and new anchorages. One of our stops was in Little Harbour, which is at the southern end of Great Abaco and serves as the entry way for north bound boats. Little Harbour is best known for two things, Pete’s Pub and the only foundry in the Bahamas at least the only bronze foundry. Randolph Johnston, a professor and sculptor from Massachusetts moved here in 1951 ,loved the place and lived on a 47 foot schooner with his family. Here he indulged in his passion and built a foundry to cast his work. It still is in use today by his son, Pete. There is one casting a week, on Thursdays and everyone is invited to see the process which uses the lost wax method. Unfortunately we were not around at the time of a pouring, as we arrived on a Friday and left on a Monday, but we did see many of his works. Some can be found in the gallery while the larger pieces are exhibited outdoors. A large green turtle and bronze painted manta ray are examples of these.

The watering hole, Pete’s Pub is the ony truly tiki bar that we have come across here in the Abacos. The structure itself is the old wheelhouse from the schooner once owned by the Johnston family. It is opened to the elements on all four sides with a sandy beach for a floor. It is the kind of place where cruisers leave behind a memento of their visit, usually a tee shirt with an inscription on it , but the odd panty or bra can also be seen….this can only attest to the loosening of inhibitions from the rum punch served. While here I helped out a fellow boater, whose diesel engine wouldn’t turn over. Having had a lot of experience with bad engines, I was able to find his problem. It was repaired . Also on one of our stops we met up with friends of Don and Joni Boyd, our webmaster. Nick and Carolyn had cruised alongside with Don and Joni back when they went down to Venezuela. Times have changed somewhat as Nick and Carolyn now have a new cruising partner…their two year old son Keegan. We never experienced long term cruising with toddlers, but it was amazing to see the youngster move about easily on their 38 foot Cabo Rico, children are so adaptable.

Here we also saw the results of hurricane Floyd. .Pete’s home was damaged and needed to be repaired before he could live in it. One boat was damaged and the owner gave it to Pete to live in. So the boat was pulled to shore by two bulldozers up on land .(See photo) Pete added the stairs and porch. It is now vacant.

Having to leave on a rising tide, we did not have enough daylight hours to make it to Marsh Harbour, our option was to slip our mooring and head out the harbour and find a safe anchorages nearby.

I (Janette) was in need of a haircut. Not knowing the services we asked for info from Jess on Cattails. Lyse volunteered to give me a trim. She has been cutting hair for fun since she was a teenager. So off we went to pick her up and set up on land. Cutting hair on a boat is not recommended. Hair goes everywhere and a boat is always moving. So there we were set up out of the wind- chair, water spray, towel, scissors. I forget to bring a mirror! Really it did not matter. She told us a joke while she cut. “What is the difference between a bad haircut and a good haircut? Two weeks.” Actually I had many compliments on my haircut and I was pleased to say that a fellow boater had done it. Many thanks to Lyse.

I also had to go up the mast. The line holding our radar reflector had chafed through, sending it crashing onto the deck. So into the bosun’s chair I sat and Jim winched me up slowly to the spreader bars. We had to chose a calm day for this operation as I didn’t want to be swinging wildly . It was my first time up and not to hairy an experience.

So the next time you hear from us, we will probably be back in the USA. Janette and I decided to make a run for Charleston, South Carolina. With a good wind and help from the Gulf Stream, we should be able to make it in about four days. We had never done the Intra Costal Waterway, and are anxious to see what it has to offer. We have heard both good and bad things about it, but only ones own personal observations will satisfy us. We don’t intend on cruising all of it, one reason is that parts of it are closed to navigation due to shoaling, and there is no money in the dredging fund to fix things, sounds a lot like the situation back home at the yacht club. So we will meander in and out of the waterway, making our way north, till we find a convenient location to haul Borean out of the water and prep her for the road trip back. She will be up for sale once home, as she is to big to really enjoy on Lac St- Louis. We intend on cleaning her up, getting rid of all her salt stains before shipping her, so as to make life a little easier for us once we are home. If any of you know of someone who would like a decently equipped, proven sailboat, send us an email.

Till next time

Jim and Janette


Don:

Meeting friends and friends of friends is one of the brightest parts of cruising.

We met Nick and Carolyn Sartor in Luperon Dominican Republic, away back in February 1998. Back then they were sailing a C&C named “Windshadow”. Being nearly the only cruisers younger than Joni and I, and being the type of couple everybody wanted to hang around with, made them the cause celeb every where they anchored.

I am not sure if I should tell this story, because I am telling it from memory and I am sure I’ll make a few errors in it’s retelling, but I will anyway.

Nick used to dinghy around with a cranky old 40 year old outboard he called “Thing”. The name fit the old Johnson well, but the name didn’t originate from the motor’s appearance and cranky nature.

Nick had acquired the backfiring egg beater from Jackie Coogan, who played Uncle Fester on the Adams Family TV Series that ran from 1964 through 1966 and into rerun eternity. Jackie Coogan was “Uncle Fester” in real life to Nick. And the motor became Nicks when Jackie died in 1984.

Nick really liked that outboard, even though it was clear, as Carolyn and Nick rowed themselves and “Thing” around the harbour, that “Thing” did not care much for life aboard Wind shadow.

As luck would have it, I had two outboards aboard Destiny Calls and to make a long story short, Nick talked me into selling the smaller of the two, a Nissan 3.5 to him just before they left for Puerto Rico.

We’d meet Nick and Carolyn at a few places as we’d catch up to them now and then, Nick putt-putting around with the Nissan, Thing safely stored in Windsahadow’s bilge. One day we found ourselves all together was in St. Thomas in the USVI’s for Carnival 1998. To my surprise Nick was back using “Thing” (which meant rowing most of the time).

Why Nick? Why!!

Apparently Nick had put the Nissan onto the push-pit before leaving Culebra for the 17 mile slog to St. T. Somewhere off Isla Culabrita a splash was heard from the aft of Windshadow. Guess what! The Nissan was gone. Now it is possible that the problem was that Nick had neglected to tighten the bracket down foreshadowing the Nissan’s final resting place under 80 feet of the Caribbean, about 12 miles due west of Charlotte Amalie, but I have always speculated that Nick is too bright a guy to have “forgotten” to tighten the motor bracket.

Both Nick and I believe that the hand of the late Ted Cassidy, who not only played Lurch along side of Jackie Coogan on the Adams Family, but was the actor who played the disembodied hand “Thing”, materialized aboard the boat that sunny afternoon and unscrewed the bolts. It’s the only reasonable explanation!

Stranger “things” have happened in the Caribbean!


to read past instalments, click here to go:

to the 2003 - 2004 Borean log list


E-Mail Jim and Janette

of S/V Borean