Green Turtle Cay, Bahamas Dec 12 2006
Hi everyone! I have not written a log in a while as Erin has been quicker (or perhaps I have been lazy). Anyway, currently we are sitting here in Green Turtle Cay, waiting for the wind to die down. It has been blowing 25 knots with gusts to 30 for the past 5 days and it is a bit cloudy, so we have been forced into immobility. Our next destination requires us to leave the protected waters of the Bahama Bank through a cut around Whale Cay. It is only a few miles of ocean sailing, but according to those who know the waves have been large and breaking completely across the cut. That doesn't sound good to us either and we are staying put until it clears up.
Things could be worse than being stuck in Green Turtle Cay, however! Because the wind has been so strong we have grabbed some dock space and it is a real treat to be able to walk to shore whenever we want. Normally "we" (by that I mean Chris) have to lower the dinghy, start the engine (which, of course always starts on the first pull ... ) , motor for 5 minutes into the waves which usually means getting wet (Erin - I get wet, too), find a spot to put the dinghy (which usually means Erin hopping out in the water at a beach - getting your pants wet and getting sand stuck in your Teva's), lock it to a post, walk through the sand and then find yourself about 1/2 mile from wherever it is you really want to be. Then the whole thing has to be reversed on the way home. At Green Turtle, however, we just walk down the dock and we are at Pineapples (see photo)!
The other good thing about Pineapples is that they often have free wifi. Notice I say "often" because the internet is down for the whole island with some frequency. (A quick note to Mr. Bannon - you will be happy to notice that I have finally figured out how to have the pictures open up in new windows instead of hijacking the page. When you are sitting waiting for wind for a week its amazing what sort of stuff you can accomplish).
Because we cannot sail - we have been forced to take up other activities lately. This mostly means eating coconut pie baked by Robertha (she actually grates her own coconut!) and washing them down with "world famous" Goombay Smashes from the Blue Bee Bar. A word of warning ... 2 Goombay Smashes is a bit more than enough. Every morning we do a 3 mile walk around the island. This is always fun - you have to make friends with the local horses and dodge the golf carts - but no one is going too fast because the roads are often a bit rough!
The other interesting thing of note is how seriously they take Christmas around here. Everyone has lights up - and when we attended the tree lighting ceremony in the center of town EVERY minister on the island had to stand up and give a sermon before they would light the tree. I tend to think one sermon is enough - but sitting through multiple denominations (no one could be left out - evidently) and several politicians is nearly suicidal. Good thing they have Goombay Smashes nearby!
We think the weather will open up by Thursday or Friday, so with a bit of luck our next log will be from Great Guana Cay or Little Harbor. Little harbor is the home of Pete's Pub and nothing else. They have a pig roast on Sunday, so we are trying to get out of here in time if we can!! Wait - Erin tells me that I am confused - the pig roast is at Nippers in Guana Cay, not Pete's Pub ... Oh well, we'll still try and make it!
A tid bit from Erin...about food (what else). Staying in Green Turtle has also given us a chance to sample local specialties. Chris mentioned Robertha's coconut pie but we have also had Guava Dove (dessert homemade and purchased at a neighborhood bake sale - yeast jelly roll with guava jam and cream on top - very good and very rich), conch available a zillion ways (so far we have sampled conch salad and a conch burger...Chris stuck with the beef cheeseburger), peas and rice, grouper...and we still have more to try. And of course rum punches; pirate's passion, pineapple smash, red tide...they all have specific meanings but nothing is written down...so we sample our way through them. Yikes!
The conch salad is a close relative to cerviche. The conch is chopped along with onion, tomato, bell pepper, etc. and marinated in a sour orange/lime/bird pepper sauce (see bottle in photo) until "cooked." The conch does not have much of a flavor and takes on tastes of whatever is around it...kinda like calamari.