A Travellerspoint blog

Trip Interlude, part 2

N18 25.50 W64 36.80

sunny 83 °F

Honestly, I am too tired to make this stuff up. Having agreed with the base manager that the Niou Dem II was not a serviceable vessel, we headed back to Roadtown to get a different boat. Simple enough. But I want to sail, so we exit Gorda Sound, move away from islands and reefs to find a clear path to try to go into irons and to raise the sails. It is blowing 15-20 knots, good for sailing if only we could get the mainsail up. And we cannot despite attempt after attempt, for 30 minutes we try. The acme of our success was to get the errant batten tangled with both sets of jack lines.

No mainsail, no problem. We will motor sail using the engine and the foresail. We know how to do this and can do it well. It can be a pretty quick way to cover ground. We are maybe 5 nm from the harbor and the engine alarm goes off: overheating. Shut down the engine and take a look at the engine compartment. There is an obvious problem with the water pump. It is leaking sea water into the compartment. Now we are down to a foresail and getting pushed towards Beef Island. So, Carol calls and gets some Moorings’ guys to come out. They quickly agree that the engine is not going to be used. So, with one sail, and the benefit of a wind coming over the stern I sail about 4 of the last 5 miles and do it pretty well, making maybe 4 knots. At the end, they tie on to the boat and get us to the dock.

Everyone is nice and genuinely apologetic. But I get the sense that they think that we should have carried on, somehow, with the main sail problem. Uncharacteristically, I hold my tongue, but I am thinking why should I adapt when I am paying mucho dinero. The boat should work so I do not have to adapt. So, they are giving us a 42-ft boat in lieu of the 38-ft. boat. Should be great, right? It is the sardine can thing again. This boat has 3 cabins, each of which is smaller than either of the two cabins on the 38-ft. boat. But it was a nice gesture and not one that could be gracefully declined. But it does have a nav station.


We spent most of the day moving stuff from one boat to the other. My stuff was fairly easy. Carol and groceries, not so much. It was hot and we were soaked. And, just when you think you are close to done, I looked up at the mast and noticed that there was no windex, the most basic instrument for sailing. They added one.

The boat’s name is Contango, and I knew that the owner was probably a commodities trader. A contango is a situation where the futures price of a commodity is higher than the spot price.

We are both tired and told one and all that we would not be leaving until tomorrow and will not be able to do that without some help. We are hard against a sea wall with little room to maneuver the boat. We also negotiated another day since this one went down the rat hole.

I do not have much of a plan yet, other than that Jost Van Dyke, where Carol can get her stitches removed, and Anegada will be our next two stops. After that, jump ball.

Posted by sailziveli 21:28 Archived in British Virgin Islands Tagged islands sailing british boating virgin bvi

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