30 July 2012

Windlass Replacement Part 1 - Preparation

old system

As you might remember our windlass broke during the last anchor manoeuver just before heading to the marina here in Grenada for hurricane season.

In the meantime I discovered, that the old motor housing from the windlass sheared off. A repair was possible but since the model is not built anymore we did some further research: The brushes are on the edge (would cost 200 USD), we missed a manual retrieval (the needed part was not found on board) and spares are in general hard to find. This made me rethink a repair, I mean we use this piece so many times and the windlass was on the lower limit of power anyway. So we opted for a new one.

Our new windlass arrived a few weeks ago from Miami, some electrical parts are still underway though. We decided for a Lofrans Tigres. We went for a horizontal windlass as I prefer the second gypsy on the side and the Tigres is known to be among the most powerful machines in this size range (see the comparison on the bottom). They also have a very simple manual retrieval mechanism in case of an emergency. I could go with an even much more powerful windlass as Habibi already has very thick cables for the windlass. These 12Volt wires have 67mm2 - each! That's needed to transfer the immense power, over 100 Ampere, while it's running. Replacing the cables was out of question as you pay up to 50 USD per Meter and laying two cables in this size through the whole boat would be a nightmare, in terms of work and cost. Thanks Island Packet for not economizing on this!

But still, changing a windlass is a lot of work. BEFORE you even get started you find yourself measuring and checking sizes with paper templates all over the place. You want to make sure that the new windlass fits before you're spending the money. And did you know that there are at least 20 different chain types on the market? No? There are different sizes in Imperial US, Metric (to choose between ISO and DIN) and you have to order the right gypsy (chain wheel) for your windlass as well. Just in case, we have a 5/16 HT (High Tensile) chain. If you do that part wrong you'll have to order a new gypsy (250USD) or alternatively a new chain (1500 USD)! I know a guy who went through two gypsies before it worked out...

The existing holes will never fit (and our deck at the anchor plattform is unbelievably 60mm thick). So before we even could think of mounting the windlass we needed to do some preparation: Thanks god we found a great Swiss guy, René, to help us with the whole wood work!

First of course we had to remove the old, now grease spilling, windlass and all the associated parts. Plan a day for that as you need to remove most of the existing chain stoppers and so. It's lovely to work from below over your head in a cramped hot anchor locker while your wife yells from above turn left - ah, no right....but when you're finally done you can start with the real work:

Marco in his "work room"

the disassembled old anchor windlass motor

the existing hole

Day one: We moulded a piece of teak in epoxy into the existing big hole where the old windlass motor used to be mounted to ensure that we won't lose any stability. I mean at some point the boat basically will be hanging on to this windlass, right?

René at work

teak moulded in epoxy into the hole

Day two: We built a new teak platform above the existing one. This was done to cover all the existing cut outs and bad looking edges. You can call it cosmetic but it makes the whole thing watertight as well. Never forget to ensure your measurement and alignment is correct by moving the 28kg windlass around...

new teak platform layed out
Marco creates a template for drilling holes

Days three/four/five: When all the epoxy was dry I could apply the sealer into the edges of our new teak plattform. As soon it was dry I started to sand and used Cetol to paint the teak with multiple coats. I'm not a big fan of Cetol anymore... But it was used on the toe rails already so I have to keep on doing it.

painted teak

Happy with the woodwork and the painting the actual job starts. Fitting and adapting the electrical system for the new windlass....can't wait for that, really!

Simpson Lawrence Sprint 1500 vs. the new Lofrans Tigres:

Power                 1000 Watt vs. 1500 Watt
Weight                18 kg vs. 28 kg 
Max Pull              680 kg vs. 1500 kg
Recovery Load     100 kg vs. 190 kg

26 July 2012

bite, suck, spit

I just had my morning coffee when Joel, a Grenadian skipper, passed by to say hello. (He is married to a Swiss, but she lives back in Switzerland - he told me this was a long story he would tell us some day. I guess, that will be an interesting one...) While we were chatting he nibbled on a fruit I haven't seen - or I didn't take notice of - before:

He offered me some to taste. The round green fruits connected to a twig are slightly bigger than grapes or cherries and the skin is quite firm.

"You have to bite it open, suck the pulp and spit out the seed", Joel told me. Hesitant I did as I was told and heard a popping sound once I bit into the fruits skin. It's almost like to split open a boiled egg with the only difference that the content has a jelly-like texture - like lychee.

Then you turn the fruit around in your mouth like a candy and suck the juicy flesh off the seed. I like the taste, it's sweet and sour best to compare with the flavor of passionfruit mixed with grape.

And once you're finished extracting all the pulp you spit out (or more ladylike: dispose of) the seed.
I then asked what they're called? In Grenada they call them chin-up, but on other islands they go by different names like ginnip, skin-up or chinette.

It's a fun fruit, very cheap and almost addictive - I'm glad I was introduced to it!

With love from paradise

23 July 2012

I hate boats but I love pizza

Did I tell you that I actually deeply hate boats? 
I mean I'm starting to be an expert in so many things already I didn't have the vaguest notion of a few months back. It looks as if I had the fridge problem under control by now (fingers crossed). I'm going to mount a new anchor windlass the next week and Yes, I'll do an engine service all by myself. But as soon as I lay back and start to enjoy the fruits of my labour, a new challenge seems to be popping up.

Today Rahel prepared a pizza for dinner, and believe me there's a long process behind. Even though her pizza topping was tasteful from the start, sometimes the crust was so hard that you actually needed a diamond bladed chainsaw with a 200 horsepower engine to cut it into pieces. And if you wanted to keep your teeth you refused to chew and just swallowed whatever was served. Thanks god that's changed in the meantime. Her pizza is completely homemade and simply delicious. I'm really looking forward each time she takes the trouble to make one. But how is the saying on a boat? If it's not broken just wait...

So today, after preparing the dough and the topping the pizza was finally in the oven. And then I heard this: "Honey, I think the oven is not working anymore!"

Yes, of course, for some reason this damn oven thermostat broke exactly when my pizza (which finally doesn't scare me anymore)  was in the stove. You need to know that I have no clue about propane ovens. Niente, nada. So I had to dig into the manual, consult the web while working over a still damn hot oven. Always scared that I do something wrong and a possible propane leak could blow me, the boat and worse the pizza up into the blue Grenadian sky. I guess I found the minor problem, just a stuck thermostat - nothing that couldn't be solved with some grease. 
Still, do I really need to be an expert in everything just to get a simple pizza????

19 July 2012

got fish?

Please note Marco's shirt - how suitable!

I feel sometimes like the wife of a fisherman - wait, I AM the wife of a fisherman! What Marco started in Dubai as a hobby he now tries to bring to perfection on our sailing trip. And I have to live with that... Don't get me wrong - I love to eat fish. But there are pros and cons:

- if Marco is lucky, we get a delicious fresh fish for dinner/lunch (and you KNOW it is fresh)
- there is always a surprise factor included - we never know what he'll catch therefor we don't know what's for dinner/lunch
- we get to know different creatures of the sea
- if Marco is unlucky he always tries to improve his fishing methods (trial and error)
- it's a way of spending some time outdoors, empty the mind and drink some beer
- if he is lucky it's economical and it saves money for our cruising kitty

- Since Marcos luck is still random, I always have to have an alternative dish ready
- if I join for a fishing trip, he usually has to release most fish as they are too cute - means we end up with no fish but some serious discussions about the benefits of being married :-) As a result I'm not that often invited anymore for fishing trips...
- I don't know what's the reason but Marco sometimes catches really ugly, funny looking , poisonous and definitely unedible creatures of the sea! The  result is the same - no fish for dinner/lunch!
-  And that's usually the time to spend more money for all kinds of "bullet-proof" fishing gimmicks. I guess that's a boy thing - getting more and better gadgets we cannot afford while the locals usually catch more fish with simple bamboo sticks... Which of course drives my fisherman then crazy and it's on me to cheer him up again!

Yesterday Marco went out fishing with some buddies and returned home with a big catch! He caught this huge and beautiful and edible JACK FISH! Since his friend got a smaller Blackfin Tuna which he shared with us the day was made.

Jack Fish

Then I was actually dreaming of a Yellowfin Tuna (Yes, I can be that precise in the meantime!) but Jack is just as delicious if not tastier! And if you have a fish as fresh as this one, there is one dish you have to use it for first: SUSHI

So off I went to get all the ingredients needed but unfortunately couldn't find a sushi rolling map and nori seaweed sheets - so no Makis this time! Instead of Sushi rice I could just find Jasmine rice - but that worked out great as a substitute. We once participated in a Sushi cooking class but that was ages ago. Means I had to improvise in all respects...

May I proudly present you the result of today's lunch: self-made Nigiri and Sashimi!

And that's for dinner: Sesame crusted Jack and Tuna fish with Teriyaki stir-fry vegetables and rice. Mmhhh..
You see, sometimes it is not bad to be married to a fisherman... ;-)

From paradise with love

18 July 2012

And the winner is...

Säntis in the evening light © Stefan Somogyi - Photography**

Frankly, we have been surprised and overwhelmed with the response we got when we asked our readers to help find a name for our new dinghy: We got estimated 100 Facebook responses, several comments on the blog and even some mails. After all it was a lot of fun to read all our dear followers response! Thank you very much!

After some comments I felt at one point the need to justify my dink decision. But what the hell? I learned a long time ago that the cheapest buy you can make is if you buy the best what you can afford. Since I'm not a "real dinghy specialist" that's what I did and I enjoy it every day. 

There have been several names I loved, "Mastercard" our flexible friend, "Bernie Madoff" always taking you for a ride or "Fatty Tuna" to name a few. My favorite (thanks Nigel) was "Graf Spee" just because it sounds sooo big. I learned later this was the name of a German warship in WWIl. First, it was very successful by sinking commercial boats (without any casualties until this point). Still, there would be a few drawbacks: I'm a pacifist and against all kinds of war, it would be ridiculously stupid to name a boat after a warship. Second, the captain of the Graf Spee decided, since he thought (wrongly) that there is no chance of survival of the next battle, to scuttle the ship himself. He even commit suicide later. Guess it would be a bad thing to name any kind of boat like that... 

A Dutch friend gave us the idea of using some typical Swiss names like "Raclette" or so. Since Habibi is Arabic we liked the idea to pay homage to our Swiss roots aswell with a corresponding name. At least for the dink. So we decided to call it....Säntis.... 
Säntis may not be that funny, but it's "our" mountain, right in front of our hometown St.Gallen. At  2'503 meters above sea level, Säntis is the tallest mountain in the Alpstein massif of northeastern Switzerland. The mountain is not just a highly visible landmark, the panorama from the summit is spectacular: Six countries can be seen if the weather allows: Switzerland, Germany, Austria, Lichtenstein, France and Italy. That fits somehow cool for world travellers, right?

Since we will not paint the name on the dink, nor will it show in any document the difficult spelling is of no concern. And as the idea of using a Swiss name came from Vincent we're glad to announce that he just won a 10 days cruise in the Caribbean on Habibi*! There will be no name giving ceremony until the name provider is actually able to participate. And I'm locking forward to see how he tries to crack a bottle of Champagne on the rubber tubes.... 

So if you'll hear in the near future a dinghy with a funny Swiss name calling the mothership over the radio with an even more weird Arabic name - watch out, we may be close....

  *Flights, Drinks and Marina Fees not included :-))

** picture credit by Stefan Somogyi - Photography - All rights reserved 
     Please check out his website here: http://www.stefan-somogyi.com/gallerie.php
     Stefan is an amazing landscape and macro photographer. His specialty is to capture 
     atmospheric pictures from the lake of constance region - that's where Marco had his
     first sailing boat and we both grew up. 

16 July 2012

Delicious Banana Chocolate Chip Bread

I love bananas, Marco sometimes even calls me "little monkey". But at the moment the bananas are almost too plentiful in our galley. A friend of us who lives on the island grows different kinds of bananas in his garden and now it's obviously the time when they're ready to eat. And you know how it is - they're usually all ripe at the same time! So when he kindly brings us a new bunch of bananas we almost can't keep up with eating them before they go bad - and we both don't like bananas that are overripe...
That's when I decide to bake a new loaf of banana chocolate chip bread as for this recipe you actually need bananas that are way over the point of being just ripe and would otherwise be destined for the garbage! I'm usually sharing the bread with our boat neighbours as firstly it's best when eaten fresh out of the oven and secondly we're not able to eat banana bread all the time. Many asked for the recipe so I'd like to share it here with you. I'm usually measuring it with cups but I try to give you the metric measurements aswell.

    2/3 cup (or 160ml) milk
1        cup (or 235ml) mashed, very ripe bananas, about 2 medium
                 you can substitute one banana with apple sauce if you like it a bit more light
2 1/2 cup (or 310g) all-purpose flour
   1/2 cup (or 100g) sugar - I usually take half white and half brown sugar,
                 add more if you want it sweeter
   1/2 cup (or 110g) unsalted butter, softened
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 1/2 tsp. baking powder
   1/2 tsp. baking soda
   3/4 tsp. salt
   1/2 cup (or 60g) walnuts, chopped
   1/3 cup (or 60g) dark chocolate chips
1        splash of Rum, if you like

Combine ingredients in order listed in a large bowl and mix by hand just until the flour is moistened. Spoon batter into a bread pan (size approximately 9x5x3" or 25x13x8cm) and bake immediately.
--> I have a bread maker and select Quick Bread. The rest is done by the machine. So the temperature and baking time are just estimates from me. You'll have to play around and try what's best for you:

Preheat oven to 350°F or 180°C.
Bake 50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaf comes out clean and the edge of the bread starts to separate from the pan.
Once the pan is cool enough to touch, carefully invert the pan — the loaf should drop right out, so make sure you support it with your other hand. Let the loaf cool on a wire rack at room temperature.
Bon appétit!

With love from paradise

Cleaning the attic

Our attic, also known as guest cabin...
One thing all cruisers seem to share is too much clutter on the boat. Despite tons of spares and tools you move a complete household around the world. But most of the boats are fairly small, if not tiny if you compare them to a house or an average flat. Just imagine you had to move all your possessions into the smallest room of your house. Yes, you need to include the kitchen stuff, your books, food for a month or so and all your so loved memorabilities which you normally keep in hidden boxes in the attic. It may have become clear that there is no room for that couch and a 100 inch plasma TV with twelve speakers.

Since cruisers are per definition poor (or that's what they claim they are!) they hardly throw anything away. Which means after six months of sailing the boat carries an additional ton of gadgets which you bought new or was a replacement but you never got rid of the not working unit - it may become handy at one point again, right?

And you know what? On a boat you can see (yes, SEE) how much useless stuff you're carrying in your life. It's not the cramped lockers (they're well hidden behind the cabin sole). It's the waterline. Every boat has obviously a part which is under water and a part which is above the water - or at least you hope so. The part under water is painted with a special stuff called antifouling which prevents growth of alges and barnacles so your boat keeps moving easely through the water and does not become an artificial reef. The line where this antifouling, or bottom paint, meets the normal hull color above the water is called the waterline. So as heavier a boat gets as more it sinks into the water, means the waterline goes higher.

That's where we are now. Our waterline became slightly higher and higher, the water is now just even with the antifouling paint. Which is not a big problem, it's just that this damn marine growth seems to know that there is a boat with some unprotected (new) underwater area in the marina. After a few days the stuff starts to inhabit that area and slowly turns the boat into a living reef. There are three ways to fight that: 1. Raise the waterline 5 - 10 cm and admit that you have too much stuff or 2. get rid of some unused junk and make the boat lighter. 3. Optional you could dive every week and clean that waterline with a scraper for two hours.

Since I'm fairly lazy I decided for option one and two only. We will raise the waterline next time we need a new antifouling and second I will force Rahel to get rid of some high heels, handbags and clothes - tools are more important anyway :-)  No really, we use the current harbor time to get rid of a lot of stuff - the rule is simple: If it's not a spare and we did not use it the last three months it gets kicked out! You would not believe......

After all it's amazing how living on a boat can change life. Since you literally see the weight you carry, you really start to think what you actually need, just to realize how less it needs to be happy. While cleaning our boat "attic" from unneeded ballast, a quote from Mildred Lisette Norman, also known as Peace Pilgrim who wandered the USA for 28 years (her only possessions were basically the clothes on her back and the few items she was carrying) came to my mind. And I guess there is no better saying:

"Anything you cannot relinquish when it has outlived its usefulness possesses you, and in this materialistic age a great many of us are possessed by our possessions."

14 July 2012

Real Jazz again

Last Friday I had a very moving music experience you seldom get in nowadays commercialized music world.

I love Jazz for years. I was on several live events from Zurich, NY to London, but there was often a missing link – most of the Jam sessions have been staged or were just otherwise part of the event. I was always in the search of something like the "The Köln Concert", the probably best Jazz happening ever. This concert took place in January 1975 – sadly I was not quite allowed to go to concerts at this time. If you ever happen to listen to that record, you may agree that this concert somehow catched the real soul of Jazz:  

In a few words: Keith Jarrett was convinced by a 17-year-old concert promoter (!!) to play on a wrong, defect piano after an exhausting long drive from Zurich. Worse, the concert took place at the unusually late hour of 11:30 PM. But Jarrett adapted to the substandard piano, played different as usual during his performance to cover the weakness of the piano. Jarrett's performance was not just enthusiastically received by the audience, the recording of " The Köln Concert" became the all-time best-selling piano album with sales of more than 3.5 million.

That’s what makes Jazz unique to me - a few guys playing fantastic music, they improvise, they include the audience and just have fun! And believe me, this concert in St. George's was just similar. It was not staged, way from perfect. Some of the musicians were outstanding – some simply not. But they provided a platform for all kind of artists, playing together, everybody could participate with different topics. All in a warm, friendly “jazzish” environment.

I highly doubt, that any record of this evening would ever be a best-seller. But for sure, it had more soul than many concerts I have seen in the past. I know now why they say Grenada is the music capital in the Caribbean! 

07 July 2012

Grenada - Round the Island in one day

little houses in the mountains
As we're gonna stay a while in Grenada we really want to see as much as possible from this beautiful island. When a friend asked us if we want to join a "Round the Island Tour" she was organizing we happily agreed. We were 12 people plus our guide Joe who was born and raised in St.George's. He was a careful driver and during the nine hours we circled the island we got a little taste of the nature and life of this little Caribbean gem.
Grenada is not very big (344km2 - that's roughly 120 times smaller than big Switzerland) but as it is mountainous the few streets have to wind up and down and distances seem to be bigger as they actually are. Colored little houses are clued to the steep slopes of the mountains everywhere, almost hidden in the lush tropical vegetation. It seemed to be laundry day as there was linen out to dry outside at almost every home - or maybe they did hang the laundry out to get washed as there was rain on and off that day?

laundry day
rain coming and going

The rain scotched our plans just a little. When we arrived at the Concord waterfall we just got a glimpse of it in bright sunshine before the clouds densified and a heavy rainshower poured down. No surprise that nobody felt like having a bath in the cool water anymore...

Concord waterfall

Many people make their living with fishing. When we arrived in Gouyave we could observe fishermen pulling in their nets. This town is famous for its "Fish Friday" where food stands are set up down a street serving all kind of fish. We will go there soon! That day we had lunch in one of the local Restaurants. As we got there a bit too early and the cook was not fully prepared we just had simple dishes like Wrap Roti or Fish & Chips. 

Fishing village Gouyave

It was not a culinary delight but it was good to have something in the stomach especially given our next destination: The River Antoine Rum Distillery. On our tour we observed a process of Rum production that has changed little since the 1800s with the oldest functioning water-propelled distillery throughout the Caribbean. They are bottling two kind of Rum, one with 69% and another with 75% Alc/Vol (you can't bring the second one on a plane as it is too strong!). We did of course taste them but for most of us they just fired the throat!

Rivers Rum 69% Alc/Vol

Luckily our next stop was the Belmont Estate! It operates as an organic goat dairy, has its own gardens, museum and restaurants. But what we came for was chocolate! OK this is not entirely correct. The Grenada Chocolate Factory doesn't offer any tour, but as the Belmont Estate produces organic cocoa for them they close this gap. So we learned about the fascinating story of the cocoa bean from traditional to present-day methods of processing and the transformation of raw cocoa into chocolate and other products. Unfortunately they don't produce any milk chocolate but their dark chocolate with 60% or 71% cocoa tastes really good - and it's no secret that the consumption of dark chocolate can be good for your health! So off we went to visit the on site store to buy a bar (or two) of chocolate or some pralinés... Mmhhh

Belmont Estate / Grenada Chocolate Factory

To get back from the East to the West coast our guide drove through the Grand Etang National Park & Forest Reserve in the central part of the island. The highest altitude we passed was around 580m and when we stopped at the Grand Etang Lake to stroll around we could feel the significant drop of the temperature - how refreshing to breath cool air! The street snaked through parts of the rainforest where the elfin vegetation amazed us and our eyes couldn't almost cope with all the different shades of green! Joe asked me if I was able to drive such winding mountain roads? I answered honestly: "I guess, I would! We have many roads like this in Switzerland and I'm used to drive on them." Marco poked me in the side and hissed into my ear: "I guess, now you have insulted him! He'd expected you to say NO!" To be honest, I'm really bad in being diplomatic. In this case I don't find just to enhance a males' ego I had to lie - what do you think?

Grand Etang Lake
Grand Etang Rainforest

Our very last stop was in Fort Frederick that was started by the French after they had captured the island from the British in 1779. I don't want to tire you with historical details - but the view was amazing! From its location you have a view in every direction.

view from Fort Frederick

I will upload much more pictures on our facebook page, so feel free to have a look or even like our page if you haven't yet.

From paradise with love

06 July 2012

messy but healthy?

Soursop before ripe
Cruising different islands in the Caribbean not only gives us the chance to see fascinating places, meet interesting people and learn about their culture and history but also to taste food we haven't heard of before. We love to try the specialties, stroll through markets and stores to get a feeling of what's grown locally. And there was a fruit we have read and heard of so much but never had a chance to taste it - it was almost like a myth: the Soursop (also called Graviola, Guanàbana, Pawpaw etc.)
In Chris Doyle's guidebook it says: "It is a knobby green fruit which is ripe when it begins to go soft. It is really delicious, but messy to eat because of all the seeds. It can be blended with a little milk and ice to make an excellent drink." A friend even told us that this fruit has the power to prevent or even heal cancer! That made us really curious!  (I found different articles regarding this matter in the web but want leave it to you to make up your mind if this sources are credible or not. I'll add some links at the end of this post.)
When I next went to the market I chose one of this quite ugly looking fruits. It was heavy and not yet ripe. But after 2-3 days it changed its color and went soft. That's what it looked like:

ripe after 2-3 days
It was time to have a look inside. I cut it in half and a peculiar smell filled the air. The flesh tasted of a mixture of strawberry and pineapple with a sour twist and its consistency was very creamy, like mashed banana. But as mentioned it was difficult to eat because of all the black seeds and after a couple of spoons I had enough anyway.

Soursop pulp with seeds
So, there was still more than half a Soursop left and I didn't want to throw it away. I decided to mix it into a milkshake. There was just one little problem - I didn't have a blender... Whatever, I started to peel all the seeds out of the pulp, by hand! Phew, that took some time and looked like this:

Soursop pulp without seeds
Achieved this I then added 1/2 liter of milk, little sugar, some lime juice and crushed ice cubes. From the mixing process I didn't take any pictures as I turned the galley just in a mess! I tried it with a mixer, pressed the pulp through a strainer, then whisking it again. OK, there's still space for improvement! BUT, after some sweaty work the drink looked like a Milkshake:

Soursop milkshake
 And it tasted like a milkshake with the peculiar flavor of Soursop!

 Mmhhhh.... cool and creamy, that was well deserved!

My conclusion: I really should get a blender! In contrary to its effect on cancer it's obviously a proven fact that this fruit contains significant amounts of vitamin C, B1, B2 and is used as a herbal medicine among people where the plant is growing to treat a variety of infections and diseases. And it's tasty.
Pure natural power!

With love from paradise

Here some links, without liability :
Sott.net: http://www.sott.net/articles/show/242555-Soursop-Fruit-Kills-Cancer-100-Fold-better-Than-Chemotherapy
cancertutor.com: http://www.cancertutor.com/Cancer/Graviola.html
searchdominica.com: http://searchdominica.com/health/soursop-graviola-guanabana/
wirkstofflexikon.com: http://www.wirkstofflexikon.com/data/de/Graviola.html

03 July 2012

name wanted

Our new dinghy is still nameless! I don't think this is a good thing for a boat. And we will not put "Tender of Habibi" on it. Yes, you see this often - people think it's cool to name the dink after the mother ship. It's not cool, it's actually stupid, as a matter of fact it's tremendously stupid.

Imagine you're one of this clever dicks who paints now the name of his yacht on the dinghy. And your dinghy is at shore while you're shopping or whatever. A dink on land indicates your boat on anchor is most probably unattended. But it's difficult to say which dink belongs to which boat. EXCEPT of course you have been so smart to put the name of your boat on it! 
You do not need to be a scientist to figure out what can happen: Even a drunk pothead (yes, exactly this kind that already hangs out early afternoon) is now capable to figure that out: One scumbag will watch your dink to see when you're coming back, while his friend "checks" your boat for any valuables. Stupid, eh? 
And for the sake of argument: Yes, it's easy to spot a yacht without dink anyway. But it needs a bit more effort to check and see where the owners are. It's like everywhere in the world, most of theft just happen when you become an easy target. 

So our dink will not be called "Little Habibi" or so. I would like to have something funny but we're out of ideas (I liked "Red October" but that's a friend's dink name already). Help us to find a juicy name! Asking you - any great idea how we could call our little, very fast dinghy?

01 July 2012

Happy weekend

Port Louis Marina, our current "home"

While on anchor we tend to ignore weekends, or better we just don't notice if it's a weekday or a Sunday. There is basically no day off, the life on board is the same everyday. You wake up when the sun is shining in your face and go to bed when night sets in (as mentioned in another blogpost, cruiser's midnight is at 9pm!) - the time in between is filled with boat maintenance, different chores, maybe sailing, fishing or snorkeling and of course cooking, eating and drinking (on your boat, on another boat or on the beach).
This changes significantly when we're staying in a marina. We take part on the landlubbers life again and go to the Gym, buy our food fresh in the market or store when needed, are running erands during opening hours, go to Happy Hour at 5pm, sometimes eat out and go to bed late. Sunday all the shops are closed and the city is quiet - no people, no hustle & bustle, no traffic. That's when we try to relax and enjoy a day off again.
I think both lifes have their pros and cons!

Here some impressions from our stroll through St.George's. Happy weekend everyone!

From paradise with love