Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Peter Island, Roadtown (return Boat) then Trellis Bay - Sailing the BVI's (10 of 10)

Well this was it, it was the last day we would be on the boat.  Our plan today was pretty simple.  We were only about 45 minutes from Roadtown so our plan was to prepare breakfast, clean up and stow all the dishes (With the exception of glasses as we knew we would have some drinks) and then clean the boat and pack our stuff.

We awoke as usual to fresh coffee and juice.  We prepared a great breakfast cooking up any of the breakfast meats we had left (Bacon and Sausage).  We had a good meal, and started the clean up process.  We used the deck brush and buckets of water to clean the boat off.  Mainly the cockpit was the area that needed the most cleaning.    We went inside the boat and straighter up all of the food that we had stored putting it in boxes to be given to local's at the Marina or to other cruisers that may be heading out for the start of their trip.

We gathered everyone's stuff from around the boat and put in down on each persons bunk.  Before we actually packed our clothes and bags, we decided to sit and just chat and have a few drinks and relax. We had brought a lot of music with us, including songs from about every genera and era.  We decided that this boat full of Texans needed some old school country.  The best part of old school country is that most of us knew the words to the songs and Oday can't stand country.  Knowing Oday doesn't like country made us all want to have a sing-a-long.  

We belted out sounds from Tammy Wynette, Roger Miller, Dolly Parton and even Claude Kings 'Wolverton Mountain'.  The funny thing is we were doing this while anchored in this harbor with about 20 other boats.  I don't know if they heard us or not, but it sure was funny to all of us except for Oday.

When we finished our sing-a-long, a peace offering was made to Oday who got to choose the CD he wanted to listen to next for our sail back to Tortola and Roadtown harbor.  We lifted the dinghy on the davits and secured everything for this last leg of the trip.  We dropped our mooring ball and headed almost due north toward Roadtown.

There was only 1 thing left to do on this leg of the trip and that was to drop off our message in a bottle at the place we thought it would likely travel the furthest.  We wrote our note essentially saying that we were a group of people sailing in the British Virgin Islands and that if this were found, to please send an email and photo of the bottle where found to us (and we listed our email addresses).  We put the note in a waterproof zip-lock bag and rolled it so it would fit in the wine bottle.
OBarr tossing out our message in a bottle
The bottle already had all of the labels removed and the cork was pushed back in to keep any water out of the bottle.  We planned our drop at the place where we assumed that the wind and current would carry it West, Southwest down the Sir Francis Drake passage and south of St. John toward the open Carribean Sea.  It could wash up on Puerto Rico, The Dominican or if it starts to head south, any where in Columbia or Venezuela.     It would be really cool to hear back from someone if they find it.  I just hope if it is found we don't get a note from St. John indicating that it would not have traveled more than about 10 miles.

We arrived back at Roadtown and called Conch charters who had us pull over by the fuel dock.  They sent one of their guys out to the boat in a dinghy and he hopped up on board, took the helm and parked it behind another boat at the fuel dock.  Because it was Sunday the fuel dock was closed so they were going to just fill it up on Monday and let us know how much it took.

We found another guy that was heading out for his charter, so we gave him some of our food stores that we hadn't needed.  He was glad to get it and loaded it up into a cart and took it to their boat.  We then set everything else out on the table for the woman who cleans up the boats to take home.

We loaded all of our bags into a cart and went through all of the check out procedures.  It took about 15 minutes or so and they let us know they would dive the boat the next morning and verify that there was no damage to props or rudders and we could be on our way.  We hopped in a van and headed back over to Beef Island, Trellis Bay where we would stay in a 'hotel' for the night to catch our early morning flight back to Puerto Rico.

This was the view from the front steps of where we stayed our last night
The place only had 4 bedrooms and a shared living room and no air conditioning.  But, they did have a nice little beach front bar that we had a few drinks in and lunch.    The hotel was called "The Loose Mongoose"  It was rustic for sure.  They didn't have air, but did have a fan in each room.  They also were to have Wifi and since most of us had been without it most of the time, we all wanted to check in and check out what was going on.  We couldn't get it to connect.   I finally saw the owner and asked if he was ok with me taking a look at it to see if I could get it going.  He was, but he couldn't recall his admin password for his service.  Luckily, routers in the BVI's just like the US tend to have some fairly generic user name from the factory so I was able to hack in within about 10 minutes.     The good news is that I fixed his connection and we were able to get on-line.

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This area is known as Trellis bay and there were quite a few boats anchored or moored just off the beach.  This is also where they throw the other full moon party on the island.  This one is on the East side of Tortola as opposed to BombaShack on the far west side of the island.  Aragorn Art Studio makes the large decorative fire balls used for the full moon party and their studio is right on the beach.  They have some really cool stuff such as smaller fire balls for home, tons of carvings and art made of the wood that drifts up onto the beach.  The owner of the studio came out to our boat on our first night to see if we were interesting in coming by the studio the next day or picking up some t-shirts.  You can check out their site here - Aragorn Art Studio.

We walked down the beach and found this really large starfish on our hike.  It was the largest start fish I have every seen up this close.  It was only in about 8 inches of water just a few feet from the shore.  Deb picked it up so we could show just how large the thing was.  We put him gently back where he was after the photo.  We also found a section of the beach that was just littered with old dinghies.  There must have been at least 8 of them that were flat and tossed up on the beach just beyond the sand line.  It was an odd site, we joked that it was the island where Dinghies went to die.

We went back to the Loose Mongoose and relaxed on the benches that were water side.  It was a great location right on the beach.  What we didn't think about was the fact that the house we were staying in was 20 feet from that great little beach side bar we had lunch in.  The live band setup and people started hanging out in the front yard with us.  It was not too bad, but not something i had planned for. We went to bed at a decent hour since we had a very early morning flight.

Up in the morning, loaded our bags into a van and headed over to the airport less than a mile from where we were.  We boarded our small plan and flew back to Puerto Rico to catch out flights back to the US.  All in all this was one of the best trips I have had.  We spent it doing what we love to do, sailing and cruising, we got to spend it with great friends that are all sailors and easy to get along with.  There were no incidents of someone getting on someone else's nerves, just a great time with friends that I can't wait to do again.  We are already starting to talk about the next trip.  Monohull maybe, and we are thinking a one way sail starting or ending in the Grenadines.

See below for the last video installment from this Blog series.  Remember, if you are looking at this from any site or method that doesn't have an embedded video below, please click the link here to see the video - Sailing BVI's - Last day, Peter Island, Roadtown, Trellis Bay

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