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Published: February 18th 2017
The more time we spend with other boaters, the more I realize how much we are really “roughing it”, even in boaters terms. It seems even the simplest of sailboats have an oven, a freezer, and generators, while others even have washing machines, dishwashers and microwaves! Many are amazed at how little we make do with.
But, yesterday, we had an older couple anchored near us stop by to compliment Lukus on the boat (a common occurrence these days) and as often happens, we began comparing notes on our boats. When he found out that we didn’t have a generator, bow thruster, or any of the other fancy electronic systems (many are most shocked to find out we don’t even have auto pilot), his comment was that having things so simple must be nice. Less things go wrong.
And it is so true. While it may seem “rougher” living to some, it means less time spent repairing or maintaining and more time for exploring and fun. Which is what we have been doing again this week.
Our adventures started when we left red shanks to anchor back at Sand Dollar beach where our friends from Dover are all
anchored. Before setting the hook, we decided to head out to do some fishing. Once out in deeper waters, we threw out some lines and began trolling. Our first catch was a large barracuda, which we tossed back. We have heard that some people don’t eat barracuda (especially larger ones) because they can carry ciguatera, a toxin that can make you sick. That, plus who wants to mess with the razor teeth on a barracuda?
When our second catch was another barracuda, this time smaller, we decided to give it a try. Hey, what’s life without a little adventure? (seriously though, we did our research first. Many people still eat barracuda with no issues) No sooner had we brought the fish aboard and thrown out the line again, Lukus spotted two small sharks circling our boat. He called to me to quickly reel in our line before they bit our bait. Just as I got the lure to the surface, one of the sharks lunged and missed it by inches. Phew, I wasn’t ready to deal with a shark on the line!
It was amazing to watch these two circling so close to the boat; the water was
Our Barracuda Catch
Nobody panic, we have eaten the fish and are still alive and well!
so calm that day we could see the bottom at 80 feet! Our friends, Don and LoAnn, had given us snapper that morning, and Lukus made a quick job of filleting both that and our barracuda so we could feed them. We spent the next half hour tossing pieces of fish into the water and watching the sharks come right up to the boat (Ok, it was Lukus who was the brave one, dangling the meat above the water surface until they would swim up close; I just watched). They continually circled under us, swimming up to the side and even lifting their heads out of the water to nip at the side of the hull. I assure you, I was diligent in keeping my toes well away from the scupper holes!
We have also spent more time snorkeling. Each time, I become more confident and I am now learning to snorkel with weights. This way, it is easier to dive down to the bottom and skim along, which means you can see more. Now that I can get down underwater, I have been able to get some better photos of coral and to search out fish and sea
creatures. The other day, as I was diving around, I was startled as a large shadow passed through the corner of my eye. I turned to see a large turtle swimming by, not even 5 feet away! I admit, there are still moments, especially when the water is murky, that I am a little nervous about something a little more vicious sneaking up on me. But Lukus is always keeping an eye out, and we are usually in fairly shallow water (5-10 feet). I like to tell myself that sharks don’t like to swim in water that shallow (and if you know otherwise, please don’t burst my bubble!! Lol).
Lukus has also been doing more snorkeling and is becoming more adept at spearing. On Valentine’s Day, he speared some lobster; Happy Valentines Day to me…yum!! We decided to share in our fortune, and so we took a couple of the biggest ones to our friends, John and Deb, on Alexis. These are some of our friends from Dover, and they were hosting other friends from home for the week. When we dropped off the catch, they graciously insisted we stay for dinner; a feast of Lobster Alfredo, garlic bread
and wine! (Now, can anyone honestly say we are “roughing it”?)
We have since spent several wonderful times on Alexis; John and Deb are kind and generous hosts, to say the least. There always seems to be a party on their boat, and we are welcome to join anytime. And there is usually food and drinks involved. Yesterday, using the leftover lobster and carcasses, we cooked up lobster bisque on their boat along with some tasty biscuits. At this rate, I am going to come back home double the size I started!!
It seems a little ironic. In George Town, there is a large group of “Doverites” (aka, people from Port Dover, our home port) that I only ever really knew by name. And yet here, miles away from home, we have been embraced welcomingly and have formed some wonderful friendships! There is something about being on the water that breeds a unique camaraderie; it reminds me of camp days as a kid!
So, even though our plans were to begin heading north, we are still here! The lovely thing is that we have no deadlines for anything, except to be back in Dover by August. And
so, we may leave here tomorrow, or the day after, or next week, or maybe next month….we will have to keep you posted!!
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