It has been over a week since Sandor and Lars went back to reality in Santa Barbara, Sandor called us up stuck in traffic by the Bird Refuge just to check on us and reminisce about all the good times we had and how we were doing…….
We were still BBQ’n “chicken frying parts” (wings and thighs) as they are called down here on the BBQ and enjoying another peaceful BVI anchorage (Trellis Bay) while sipping on a Red Stripe or 3, waiting for the party to start on the beach as the sound of the local Reggae band warming up drifted out to us on the gentle breeze over the warm Caribbean Sea. Sandor was jealous, he had gone only a couple of feet in the 5 minutes we had been chatting and was wishing he was back in paradise. Where there are no traffic jams on the dingy freeways and if you can’t find a parking space you only have to come in a little hot to the dock and ram the inferior charter companies dinghies out of the way to make room for the bad ass, built of metal “Red Rocket” super dink.
So, he let me know he was coming back as quickly as his wife, family and job would let him and I can’t wait to have more fun times with our friends around the world where ever we might be. Just show up where we are and you have a place to stay, don’t even ask just come, we miss you all back in Santa Barbara, but have made many good friends along the way as well.
The BVI’s have a large Ex-Pat community that work in all the local jobs that the “Belongers” (what your called if your born here) don’t want to do or can’t. As we spent a couple of weeks on the hard in Nanny Cay (pronounced Key), we made friends with a ton of them that introduced us around and as we are a bit unusual in our occupation here on Tortola, they quickly accepted us and are constantly inviting us to do this or that and showing us a good time. Its super fun to be hanging with all the locals who take you to the magical anchorages and show you the secret surf spots that just are not on the maps. Almost all of the Ex-Pats are from England, South Africa, Australia, Ireland, you get the picture by now and are use to dealing with American tourists and are amazed that people like us even exist in America. People that want to see the world, experience new things and are not fearful of their lives outside of their comfort zones. I don’t know what we as Americans did to get such a bad reputation, but hopefully we are changing some minds and instilling the thought that all the people in America are not overweight, self-centered and uneducated as to the world and its cultures.
But back to a different reality for one of us. Ty leaves tomorrow (wed, Feb. 27th) bound for San Diego and home. As the First Mate position on the Natural Mystic doesn’t pay anything, it was hard for Ty to accept that he was spending what is suppose to be the most productive time of your life floating around the Caribbean, with no real aim or goals other than good times and adventure. Worried about the future when he returned to reality broke and tan, he decided this lifestyle is just not for him and he should be working and saving so he can do this in the future on his terms if he wants. We all agreed that this is best for everyone and we will miss him dearly aboard the Natty M. His sailing skills are nearly impossible to replace and the adventures and fun times we shared will be fond memories I will cherish for ever. You truly get to know someone almost better than your girlfriend or even brother when you live with them for 6 months on a boat and cross the North Atlantic in winter and we know that leaving and getting some perspective on his life is what Ty needs and is best for everyone. I know I speak for Ben and Myself when I say we wish Ty all the best back home and can’t thank him enough for all his hard work and time he put into making the Natty M both extra seaworthy and a great place to call home and we both have a feeling we might not have seen the last of him once he gets stuck in a little Bird Refuge Friday traffic.
We herd the swell was pumping back home and Juston Alton and Mike Morse e-mailed me some great pictures of the surf and they made me miss it, but we know we have to get back to Santa Barbara on our own and with the Natty M. So, after a week of anchoring in the remote anchorages (no Internet=no way to post to the website) of the BVI and enjoying some great exploring, hiking and diving (the surf and wind have been bad since Sandor and Lars left, I thought it is suppose to work the other way) we are back in Sopper’s hole on the west end of Tortola waiting for the ferry to carry Ty off to the USVI, St. Thomas and his awaiting plane tomorrow and sill searching for a new first mate; so shoot me an e-mail if your interested, firstname.lastname@example.org and you could be living the dream too.
We spent last night anchored in White Bay on Yost Van Dike and were able to visit the famous Soggy Dollar Bar, where as there is no dingy dock you have to swim ashore and hence your money is soggy. But, what the place is truly famous for is they invented the infamous “Painkiller” and as it is not one of my favorite drinks it is Ben’s and he proudly proclaimed that it was one of the best he has ever tasted and that is saying something after spending those 10 days with Sandor and Lars. I even had a couple and with a little bit of a buzz, went for a night snorkel and was amazed at the beauty of the coral under the still large, but waning moon and then discovered that it was way more fun to snorkel with no light and watched in amazement as glowing plankton exploded in green fire off my outstretched hand, blasting past my mask like I was traveling at warp speed through this liquidity sea. Then when I grew tired of that I just laid down on the sandy bottom, looking up as the stars and Orion’s Belt as the constellation shimmered psychedelically overhead through the crystal clear wobbly sea surface. It made me feel at peace and small to gaze at something so familiar through such a different perspective and I knew that it would all work out for us and we would find our new crew in time and if we didn’t the stars would continue to shine, as has they have forever and it really wouldn’t make any difference to them what became of us.
So, with our destiny in the fate of the stars we are getting ready to leave the paradise of the BVI and all of our friends here in search of new lands and adventure in St. Marten and St. Barts (suppose to have some great waves..sushhhhhh). With any luck that might happen next week and just in time for the world famous Heineken Regatta, where we have a ride on a 70 ft. Swan if we make it and probably lots more fun times. So remember to avoid that traffic and if you want to get away you know where we are and will be, so keep on having fun and we promise to do the same. Cheers – Kyber