…That Started From This Tropic Port…

Morning. The motor was humming and the boat was already in motion.

Everyone was still asleep as my dad untied us from the mooring and motored over to a popular snorkeling spot called The Indians. It was a blustery day and the water was choppy.

The Indians sit right off the cost of an island right off of the Sir Francis Drake Channel & so it was kind of a tough mooring for us. We tried & failed to get the mooring a few times before we were finally secure. My dad was still nervous about the boat coming loose and opted not to go snorkeling. Since the snorkeling is basically in open water with a strong current, I was worried I would not be a strong enough swimmer to handle it. My dad dinghy-ed my mom & sisters out over the coral while I contemplated whether or not to join.

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They jumped in the water and then signaled that Jonathan & should come in. The water on the inside of the rocks was not as choppy and so it turned out to be easier to navigate than I thought. We saw a puffer fish, tons of coral, and so many more fish. Even so, after a quick dip I decided it was more fun to stay on board and read my book. I just wanted to relax and snorkeling is a stressful experience for me. I worry about the people around me & that they’ll drown. (It stems from a few years back when I witnessed someone pulled out of the water after they drowned… Traumatic.) Anyway, after a few pictures, we set sail  for our next destination: Manchioneel Bay.

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Our destination was basically straight upwind and so we did a lot of tacking back and forth to get there. After an hour or two of sailing we decided to motor the rest of the way in. In our chart briefing the BVI Yacht lady told us that the moorings fill up quickly at Manchioneel Bay and so we did not want to miss out.

This bay was more picturesque than the Bight and was more of what I thought our destinations would look like. Palm trees lined the coast and the water was a calm turquoise.

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This time we made sure to pick a mooring further inland where we would be shielded from the elements at night. After mooring, it was too far past lunch time but too close to dinner to really eat so we opted for a yummy snack of goat cheese, grapes, and sausage. Oh, and Painkillers too of course! So many Painkillers on this trip… 🙂

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Madelyn saw the palm trees and became absolutely obsessed with finding a coconut. She begged and begged for someone to go to shore with her & to help her climb a tree to get one. Finally Jonathan agreed & they went off on an adventure. They came back pretty quickly & it turned out there were just coconuts in some bushes next to the yacht club. Ha! Madelyn was excited and happy but then just wound up throwing it into the water after she finally got it open.

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The bottom of Manchioneel Bay is lined with sea grass and so we were hoping to see some sea turtles! Once again we donned our snorkeling gear and took the dinghy to the far side of the bay. We were not disappointed. We saw starfish, a stingray, and a sea turtle!

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After snorkeling we headed back to the boat to cook up some dinner. Being in the water and on the boat all day can make you really work up an appetite! We decided to attempt to barbecue on the grill attached to the back of our boat.

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The chicken turned out yummy and luckily was finished before the rain came. I’m pretty sure from this night until the end of the trip it rained every single night. Without internet or phone or TV or night life I was wondering if the nights on board would be boring but I was able to rediscover my love for books. It felt good to disconnect from the real world (i.e. school & work!).

We still had a view of Tortola from Manchioneel Bay and so it was cool to watch the lightning flash behind the hills. The night was not as scary as the first since we kind of new what to expect, but it is just so freaky to go to sleep knowing that the only thing stopping your boat from breaking free and crashing into the shore/heading into the open channel is a pretty thin and worn rope.

One by one all of the cabin lights went off and everyone was sleeping. Awake in bed, I thought about what the next day would bring.

It’s kind of thrilling not knowing what will come next.

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