P1070724”Imagine leaving Devon early on a Wednesday morning and landing in Antigua Thursday afternoon. Arriving at English Harbour to see The Grayhound anchored. What a wonderful sight.P1070880P1070751 Two weeks full of discovery and new experiences. We sailed to the volcanic isle of Montserrat, and being the intrepid explorers we are, taking full P1070788 P1070787 P1070783P1070797P1070820 P1070811P1070887P1070890P1070895P1070911advantage of Joe’s ( taxi driver) local knowledge we viewed the pyro clastic flow that enveloped Plymouth. Sarah , Grayhound crew managed to get herself a little part time job at Moose’s Bar. And didn’t she serve the rum with flair. The Blackwood Allen nature trail saw us the next day climbing through the undergrowth and trying to break into coconuts, unsuccessfully I might add. Lovely sightings of Humming birds. Ruth (crew), working her charm on the taxi man Rueben,  ace Goat water maker of renown on Montserrat, managed to secure enough of the mixture for supper later in the week. But that is another story! As if that wasn’t enough for one day Mark (guest crew) walked along the bow sprit to the end and managed a magnificent dive. Along with Ruth who nearly got to the end, before jumping in but did climb up the anchor chain after. Tuesday, Sarah’s birthday- mission Redonda to land and conquer! Four fearless swimmers managed to secure the small uninhabited island for the Cornish, Welsh and not forgetting Essex! With a specially made flag. Our first overnight watches sailing from Redonda past Nevis to Saba. Actually the experience of three hours sleep before getting up again was not as bad as I imagined. Sarah enjoyed long distance swimming being escorted by Terry the Tarpin. Now back to the goat water story. We enjoyed a tasty supper of Goat water and afterwards threw the left overs to the one shark off Saba. A good hour of entertainment. But it worried Sarah to reflect on her swim in the shark infested waters earlier that day. The waters being a bit choppy did not allow us to visit Bottom and the Lace making ladies of Saba , so we sailed on to St Maartin. Just as we were leaving we sighted two Humpback Whales at very close quarters, what a sight. A visit to Philipsburg and Marigot the next day allowed us to catch up with the sights of the Island of St Maatin. We walked up to St Louis Fort in Marigot. We continued our journey back to Antigua taking in the Dolphins feeding along the way. We anchored in Jolly Harbour on Antigua and were able to visit along the coast in a motor boat owned by a friend of Grayhounds’. Lots of time to snorkel and enjoy the day. Nowhere else can you celebrate Christmas in March except on the Grayhound. Some of the crew being poorly at Christmas they could not celebrate it in the traditional way, so we enjoyed a late celebration with the crew. We even had a Christmas card, and hats to create the atmosphere. Plus a few bottles of wine and plenty of party games. A superb 2 weeks of many many great memories. We enjoyed excellent food on the boat and good company. Freya and Marcus could not be better hosts with Ruth and Sarah supporting. Malachi is a bundle of energy and full of joy”

 

By Sharon Jarvis