Hello all,

Bright and early on Dec 31st, we motored out of Nassau harbour, heading for the cays of the Exumas. We had given up waiting for the wind to switch around so that we could sail the course. Crossing the Yellow Banks was no real problem as we had a favourable tide to give us those additional feet needed. Murray only had stand at the mast to keep watch, looking for shallow coral heads, for approx an hour.

Norman’s Cay was our destination and we dropped the hook off of “One Palm Island” before 3 pm. Lots of time to break out the cocktails for our quiet New Years Eve. In the morning, we headed out for our first snorkel of the season. Murray scouted an area, dove once and shot a lobster right between the eyes. The two of us checked out a few more coral heads and saw some very pretty fish but nothing edible. After a walk on one of my favourite deserted beaches, it was time to rinse off, clean the lobster and think about dinner.

A cold front came through the next day and the wind howled in the rigging. We snuggled below, read books, played computer games and watched movies. Because of the wind strength, we had loads of power from the wind generator.

Jan 4th found the wind still quite strong but switching more southerly tomorrow. If we wanted to sail south, this was it. We hauled anchor and headed for Big Major Spot, near Staniel Cay. The wind was still 25-30 knots and the short choppy waves washed over our boat frequently. I took refuge under the dodger and it broke MOST of the waves. But, not all. Eventually, we had to close the companionway as sea water was sloshing down the stairs. It was a fast trip to Staniel, taking us 5.5 hrs in total for the 43 nautical miles.

The freight boat arrived the next morning and we visited Isles General Store and stocked up with fresh vegetables and fruit. A trip to town isn’t complete without a Klick ( Bahamian beer )at the Staniel Cay Yacht Club. They have free wifi there, so I caught up on my banking etc.

The 8th was a lovely day for a sail, so we hauled anchor and headed south to Little Bay, Great Guana Cay. Friends there own a castle which they built and called appropriately Sandcastle. They invited us to a dinner party they were hosting and we got to meet up with old friends and make some new ones. Another lovely morning dawned and we went beachcombing on two different beaches. Not too many shells found but many sea beans, plastic fishing floats and small line floats. All in all, another good day.

The weather continues to be windy with another cold front maybe headed our way next week. Brrr, we need the water to warm up again as it has dropped 4-6 degrees in the last while. I know, we are whimpy as it is still 72F or 24C. Lots warmer than Georgian Bay on a good day! Tomorrow we will head around the corner to Black Point to do laundry at the prettiest laundry around. And the only coin laundry between Nassua and George Town. Then, maybe back to Staniel as they just announced a barbeque on the beach in town later in the afternoon. It is a busy social calendar!

That is all of the news from here. Not much exciting happening and that is probably a good thing. Hugs to all and stay warm,

Heather & Murray