June 09, 2008

Are we there yet?

By car, by plane, by boat, doesn't matter, if you have kids you still here the dreaded..."Are we there yet?". I probably heard this 15 times yesterday.

Guadeloupe is a few islands there is one big island and then a few smaller islands. We were anchored at the northwest tip of the big island in Deshaies, so yesterday we sailed all the way down to the smaller islands in the south called Les Saintes and to a place called Gendarmerie.

The sail was about 8 hours and totally different than the crossing the day before. The water w as so calm, almost no wind at all. I always thought I would like light winds but once you realize that you can go faster when you sail than when you motor, you want the wind. We put the music on and got out the pads for the seats. The kids had decided that they wanted to stay sleeping for this trip, so they were in bed and we just enjoyed the early morning.

Since we were along the coast, we were able to take in Guadeloupe and it was beautiful. Seriously, I wish we had more time. It has beautiful rolling hills, lush green and looks so clean. Most of the houses are red tin top and look so pretty perched in the hills. Made us want to break out the hiking boats and explore.

The kids finally got up and they were thrilled that they got walk around the boat and hang their feet over the edge and stand at the front. They have been begging me, but of course when the waves are 2 meters, there is NO WAY.

We did get some sailing in and hit some wind as we rounded the south end of the big island and it felt great. I have been enjoying "Mr Auto" as I call him. He is our auto pilot and when we are just going for hour on hour in the same direction, you just click the button and Mr. Auto has the helm but as we came from calm to the wind line (and you could see it), I actually felt excited to sail. I clicked the stand by button and took the wheel and it was GREAT. We were close hauled and I just tried to revel in the heel. I could hear Ricks words in my head, "She loves to lean, that is when she gets in her groove" and I just went for it.

This time anchoring was a bit tricky. The bottom is quite sandy in spots. I love the headsets we have. Makes it alot easier but man I feel the pressure at the helm. He is giving the orders and if I don't follow exactly, I hear about it! "Take the boat down to 1.6 knots. Whats your depth? Turn more to port. Stop the boat. Give it a kick of reverse. Stop. Go forward a bit. Wait for the wind to take us and for us to straighten out. Put her in neutral. Is she in neutral?"

Well we are taking a day to explore today. The kids snorkelled after we got in yesterday and saw their first octopus. As they were falling asleep I could hear them talking about it and it made me feel good. We sleep directly under an open hatch, so you can see the stars and the breeze is on your face. For the first time in a while, I felt really good.


  1. Sounds like the perfect life to me :)

    (well except Graham yelling at you) LOL

  2. you better hurry up! I'll see you in a couple weeks:)

  3. Hey - what a difference in what I read here and what I heard a couple of days ago. This is what it is all about. I hate to say I told you so but.....
    Really glad it is going so well. Enjoy your day of rest and fair winds and small swells for the rest
    Love Griff and Cheryl

  4. Sail, sail, sail, so you can make it back to the cottage. Can't wait to see you. You sound like you are really enjoying it now. Getting into the pure joy of it.
    See you soon. Take lots of pictures to show us.