Fort Christiansted

Time for another fort. The kids are going to be forted out soon. In fact, what they end up doing is playing tag, hide and seek or some other game. “Where’s Matthew?” “We dunno, maybe in the dungeon.” “<sigh>”

The fort is a very strange and gaudy yellow colour.

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But, it is one of the best kept and restored forts we’ve seen.

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An example of the normal speed that happens in the forts.

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Find the Frazer in the Fort. A game the whole family can play.

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St Croix – A Quick Visit

We decided to get one more quick passage and visit in before we hang out completely in the BVI. So, we headed over to St. Croix which is part of the US Virgin Islands. It’s about 30 nautical miles away and on the day we chose to go the seas were quite confused. Nobody had any fun on the trip over. Fortunately it wasn’t all that long. And, it could have been worse since the seas were going to be getting bigger.

Here’s a shot of the waterfront at Christenstad.

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A good example of the lax nature of things sometimes…. a No Parking sign with…. parking.

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Video – BVI Emancipation Parade Stilt Dancers

Very cool.

BVI Emancipation Parade

One of the things that we wanted to see was the Emancipation Festival Parade or their Carnival. We also wanted the kids to be able to experience it. The interesting thing is that finding out what time it starts is near to impossible. And, we believe it’s for a reason. That way no one can say that it didn’t start on time (because no matter what time it was supposed to start, it got started on island time. 🙂

Here are some of the images from that.

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Not sure the significance of this but with the donkey dressed as he is with complete leggings, the hat, wig et al, I’m sure he will be the talk of his drove (apparently that’s a herd of donkeys).

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Some of the dancers…

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Jumbies or Stilt Dancers

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Pussy Cat…

The little catamaran was following us around from Trellis Bay to Cane Garden Bay. It’s such a “cute” little power cat. It’s actually taller than it is long and it’s not much longer than a dozen feet long.

The kids named it Kitty Kat.

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I Lied – Full Moon Pictures

Okay, apparently I didn’t download the camera again…. which means we did have photos of the Full Moon Party. Yeesh. I have to keep up.

In my defence, this would be a good time to say that I’ve gone through over 18,000 pictures and video to produce this blog. Did I mention we have a new high score? 🙂

Okay, so we have Jumbies or Stilt Dancers.

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Burning Man… fire, ughh!

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Jumbie and Kid Jumbie

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Fireball dying out…

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Kids in the climbing tree…. nothing cooler than a little Peter Pan like experience

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Or, is that Pirates. Arghh. Gotta check in on my myths and legends.

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Another Full Moon Party…. Rolling Down The Hill

One of the reasons that we came back to the BVI for Matthew’s birthday was to celebrate at a Full Moon Party at Trellis Bay. We didn’t take any pictures that night, except for this one of the moon rolling down the hill. Funny things happen in the BVI.

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Birthday Cake – Finally…

Okay, finally a picture of Matthew’s birthday cake. Again, delicious cake by Caroline underneath, well decorated cake by the boys on top.

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Had trouble putting the candles out…. Caroline didn’t know that they were never-go-out candles. Very funny. Video to come.

Matthew the Sailor

I don’t know if it’s his birthday that just happened or what, but Matthew has been quite interested in being more involved in the sailing. He now goes up to the front with Mommy when we’re picking up or dropping a mooring. He gives me the big thumbs up signal when they’re ready, and a big shout when “we’re off!” And, in terms of the wheel, he’s happen to take the helm a fair bit. He does however ask that we put down a couple of hard cushions so that he can see! Amazing what he and his brothers are picking up.

Here he is in all his glory…

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KIds Sailing….. On Their Own!?

As part of the birthday fun for Matthew, the boys were able to go out on a sailing lesson on their own. And, they were on their own, the three of them in a laser with the instructor following in a chase boat. Did Mom and Dad have any concerns… not many, really… okay maybe one…. or two….. All kidding aside, we figured they would have a good time and they did! They didn’t switch positions but still learned a lot. And, they only capsized the boat once… right after they got going just a few metres from the spot in this picture.

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And, here they are, smoking along with their blue and white sail with the chase boat in behind… go Frazer boys.

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Hurricane Season and Mangroves

I think that I may have mentioned mangroves before. When storms happen, one of the best places to be (in terms of boats) is within a mangrove lagoon. The water is shallow and the mangroves are definitely not going anywhere, as you can see from the root system.

So far this season, we’ve seen a couple of storms form recently. I’ll give more information on them in a later post, but know that their tracks are quite a distance from us and we’re not affected except for some swell, a little extra wind and some rain.

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Olympics

Are you interested in the Olympics? We are down here. Interesting thing though is that it is very difficult to get any video. No broadcaster is allowed to broadcast their feeds over the internet down here. When you couple that with the fact that the internet recently has been really awful, it’s been hard to see the Olympics. But, we’re able to keep up with the news at least.

Go Canada!

Sailor Boys

I am amazed at how much the boys have developed in terms of their seamanship. Having said that, perhaps in some cases they have become too relaxed. 🙂

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Passage From Antigua to the BVI

Following our adventures in Antigua, it was time to do our next passage. We chose to do a looong passage directly home instead of 2 smaller passages. This meant what could be up to 27 hours of sailing. We ended up having very good winds and pretty good seas so we were able to do it in about 21 hours.

What you may not know is that our GPS SPOT device stopped giving you updates after about halfway through the passage at about 10pm. Now for most everyone that didn’t matter. But, for our unseen crew it did. We’ve been fortunate to have my brother, Garth, and the caregiver extraordinaire, Christine, acting as ground crew and tracking us as we passage. As ground crew, if we do not give them updates and then do not arrive at our destination on time, they have the responsibility to declare to the authorities that our ship has not checked in and to start the appropriate search and rescue. The hope is that long before they start this process, we would already have declared a problem with one of the two tracking devices we have on board the boat.

Needless to say, that not seeing updates is a great way to provide unnecessary stress to our ground crew. So, now would be a great time to thank them for being there to make sure that we were completely safe.

We will not be doing any more major passages which in some way announces the beginning of the end of this particular adventure.

But, still more to come.

Devil’s Bridge – The Video

Here’s a video of Devil’s Bridge in Antigua.

What you see is the hole between the shore on the left and the rock land bridge on the right. Always amazing to see the power of nature.

Antigua – More Coast and a Mongoose

Here are some more pictures of our Antigua car adventure…

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One of the many mongooses, mongeese, mongeeses, I’ll let you decide (yes, I do know what is “proper”. 🙂

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Shirley Heights – Antigua

Shirley Heights has the most amazing views. It looks over the famous Nelson Dockyards (or as the kids would say Nelson’s Backyard) as well as Falmouth Harbour and English Harbour. I could literally stay there for hours taking in the views.

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Flora… because it’s been far too long. 🙂

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Now That’s A Sausage

Here is Matthew manhandling a Sausage Tree’s seed pod. Now that’s a substantial seed. There are amazing to see hanging off the branches.

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