January 11, 2016
This morning we went for a walk in town with Mañana. We were looking for Nate's Bakery. Did some backtracking and then took the road along the beach north until we found Nate's. We both bought a loaf of Coconut bread.
We headed back into town to find a shop which could help us out with our Bahama Phone. They sold us a new chip and $50.00 worth of calling. We went back to the boats to finish the setup of the phones. I tried to send a text to our son Sean but he said he was not receiving it. Mañana was having problems with his phone as well. We decided to take it to the BBT tomorrow and see if they could help out.
We took the ferry across to South Bimini after lunch. South Bimini is much less populated than North Bimini. We walked down to the Sands Resort about 15 minutes away. The resort is a relatively square harbor lined with two story town houses all around it. They have a small restaurant at one end of the complex and an infinity pool at the other. The weather is still way too cold for us to swim in the pool.
We then walked to the south end of the island to have a drink at the bar and catch the shuttle back to the ferry. We found the marina at the south end in great disrepair. I leaned on one of the 12" pilings and it broke off at the dock level. This not a safe place to walk around let alone dock your boat.
We walked up to the building that we thought was the bar but turned around at the last minute because it looked abandoned. As we walked away, a lady came out the door and called us back letting us know that they were open.
Inside is was quite nice. It was an old Open Island bar that was closed in with sand floors and high bar stools. The sand was raked and well kept. I asked how much the Guinness was and they said $4.00. We all stayed for drinks and then asked for the shuttle to pick us up. Karen did not ask what her mixed drink would cost and ended up spending $10.00 for a vodka tonic. Expensive.
We waited and waited for the shuttle. Each time we called they told us it would be there in five minutes. I wonder how long five minutes is in the Bahamas. We finally gave up waiting and started walking back to the ferry. About ¾ of the way to the ferry we saw the shuttle coming for us. We stopped him in the road and had him turn around and take us to the ferry. His excuse was that he just got on so the guy who was on before driving the shuttle just did not want to come and get us. Oh the answer is: five minutes in the Bahamas is one hour in our time.
January 12, 2016
The rain and winds are out of the northeast at eight to sixteen knots. Went out and scrubbed the deck in the rain to make use of the free rinse. Wash water here is fifteen cents a gallon and potable water is a dollar a gallon. I came in out of the rain and Karen showed me how to do the blog. Great, I am only six weeks behind.
The rain eased up a bit so we headed into town to the BBT office to get some help with our phone. When we arrive a lady opens the door of the BBT building and tells us to come back in an hour they were closed from 13:00 to 14:00 for lunch. She then closes and locks the door. It begins to rain. We walked back to our boat to try to get our propane tank filled. We were told to go to the liquor store across from the marina. Go to the liquor store for propane?
Well the guy who fills the propane likes to drink so if you want to find him, go to the liquor store. We found him there and he told us to leave the tank outside the store. We did as we were told and watched and waited.
He came out of the liquor store, put his beer down, picked up our propane tank, and got into his truck and left. Ten minutes later he came back with our propane tank filled. We paid him our $14.00 for the fill up and went back to our boat. He picked up his beer and went back to the liquor store. Now we know how to get our propane filled in Alice Town.
We then walked back to the BBT office to get ourselves some help with the phone. The lady who had previously run us off was helping another customer but still asked us what she could help us with. She also thanked us for coming back. She was very gracious. She asked me what number I was trying to text to and Karen immediately told me that was not Sean's phone number. The problem was solved. We thanked the lady for her help and returned to our boat in the rain. I spent the evening working on our blog while Karen and Linda played Canasta.
January 13, 2016
Worked on the blog and then walked to the Casino on the north part of the island. It was a good three mile walk. The development was deserted except for the workers there. We walked up to the Hilton hoping to get to the Casino but the road was blocked by construction. We looped back and took another road out along the beach. They had a nice infinity pool along the beach and a restaurant that did not open until 13:00 for lunch? There was a huge pier built on the ocean side where the big ferries could tie up bringing the people over for the mainland. The day before was the last ferry to run.
They abandoned the ferry rides from the mainland because a good number of the guests were getting seasick on the ride over. Now the only way to get over from the mainland is by private boat or airplane. This development is doomed to be another great failure in the Bahamas. Many of the Islands have developments from the 1970s that are lying in ruins. There are many others that are currently struggling to stay afloat. This one is currently being developed but I don't know how you get it to make money without it being easily accessible to the people who may want to use it.
We made it to the Casino and no one was playing anything. There were four people eating lunch at the bar and about twenty workers standing around doing nothing.
We left the casino and asked about the shuttle back to town. It was not scheduled to go back to town until 13:00 so we began to walk back on our own. We got just outside of the entrance when we ran into Bright Eyes on their Circus Bicycles (bicycles with 10"wheels easily stored on a boat.) We chatted for a while and then headed on our ways, us back to town and them on to the Casino.
We did not get far before the shuttle came by and stopped for us. The driver recognized us from the Casino and was kind enough to stop and pick us up along the way. She said she would have expected us to be a lot further along than we were and we explained that we had stopped to chat with some friends. Karen wanted to get some Conch salad along the way and the driver was kind enough to drive us to the best Conch shack on the island but, alas, today they were out of Conch salad. The driver took us back to the marina and Karen gave the driver a tip for being so nice to us. We thanked her and went back to the boat.
Later that evening one of the local fishermen showed up with Conch and Lobster for sale. We bought four lobster tails for $12.00. What a great deal. We steamed the lobster tails for eight minutes. They were a great meal!
Before dinner we had an impromptu happy hour. We were all standing around visiting when someone said let's have a happy hour. Ten minutes later we were all around the marina barbeque area with drinks in our hand having a good time.
January 14, 2016
This is another rainy day in Bimini. Worked on what I could on the boat. Walked the town and got soaked…
January 15, 2016
The winds blew like hell today. We clocked over 40 knot winds at time. The boats are getting knocked about quite a bit. We spent most of the day below being bounced about.
January 16, 2016
We finally got tired of being bounced about and went over to the Sands Marina to tie up. Tomorrow is supposed to be a carbon copy of yesterday with winds approaching 50 knots. The Sands appears to have a lot better protection in their harbor.
We moved over in high tide to avoid any issues with the harbor entrance. The shallowest water was at the entrance of the Sands marina at eight feet. When I went in I knew I should have backed into the slip but went in front first. That was a big mistake. Mañana and Truant made the move with us to the Sands.
After tying up and checking in, we walked over to the Infinity pool and hung out. The water and the day were too cold to actually swim in the pool so we just soaked our feet for a while. We went back to the boats and chilled for the night.
January 17, 2016
The storm started about midnight. The rain came down in the buckets full for a while. By morning the skies had cleared but the winds were blowing at 30 knots. The high winds were coming from the back of the boat and tearing our bimini apart so I took it down. I should have backed in…
Luckily Mañana had a Sailrite Sewing Machine and I borrowed it to make some repairs. I was doing this down below while the winds were knocking us all over the place. Still it would have been a lot worse over at Browns on North Bimini.
After a couple of hours fighting the wind and the sewing machine, I had made the necessary repairs on the bimini to make it useable again. I put the bimini up again in the evening and tied it down with a spare line to keep it from flopping around and causing more damage.