15 February 2008

Whisper underway

As we were sailing to Marina Cay yesterday, Yacht Shots BVI took some pictures of Whisper underway. While pricey to buy the prints, you can check them out at


If that doesn't work, try
and then scroll down the list until you see Whisper's name.

If you can't get it that way, try
then scroll down to Norman and Peter Island and click on "Yachts 20 jan to present"
and that will take you to the above link.

Marina Cay, BVI

February 15, 2008

Valentine’s Day came and went with a fast sail, a pirate-themed concert on the top of an island, aglio i olio (garlic & olive oil spaghetti) for dinner and a good night smooch. We hope everyone had a love-filled Valentine’s Day too!

We’re currently anchored at an idyllic island on the north side of Tortola. The island is privately owned with a hotel, restaurant and gift store. They have a field of mooring balls and also many services that cruisers like us appreciate; namely, laundry and free internet. The anchorage is set behind a large reef so our view from Whisper is Tortola, Virgin Gorda and the Caribbean Sea, and no rocking and rolling in the swell! Pretty good deal!

Sailing down to Norman's Island.

Skipping back a few days, we left Soper’s Hole on Monday and took Kit Kat to the vet (which she has already written about in the previous entry) and then we sailed down to Norman’s Island, home of the Willy Thornton floating bar & restaurant. We had a blast, dancing, dancing and dancing. Back in the day, you could win a t-shirt for jumping off the boat naked but last year a guy got hurt so they called that off. It’s still a rowdy atmosphere though with shots taken off surf boards and other people’s bodies.

The anchorage at Norman's Island.

Dancing the night away at Willy T's.

We met quite a few really friendly people at Norman’s as well. Some people on different charter boats all stopped by Whisper to say hi and find out what we are doing. Beth & Gary from Colorado wanted to hear all about our travels and since they were at the end of their two-week vacation they gave us leftover provisions. Thanks! A second-generation Swede and a guy from Manchester, NH were on vacation with their wives and some friends and had us over for drinks and tall tales. The next morning they dropped off a 6-pack of Coors Light they claimed no one on the boat would drink. Thanks again! At the bar we met Jim from Keene, NH who owns a large motor yacht, Runaway. He’s been living in the Virgins for about 20 years now running around on boats. Hans stopped by his boat the next morning and he gave us 20 gallons of water. Thanks yet again! Finally, we met Chris & Julie from their charter boat Blu Moon. If you’re looking to charter a captained/chefed vessel in the BVIs, look no further than www.vicl.org. Chris and Julie are energetic, fun, and have been doing this for over 15 years so they know all the great places to visit. Chris tipped us off on a store to stock up on English sausages and tea and helped Hans make a lobster snare, another way to snag those underwater bugs. Thanks!

After all that social activity, we sailed to Key Cay on the south coast of Peter Island and had our own anchorage for the first time in months. It was wonderful…except we were in a bit of a wind tunnel and the gusts had Whisper heeled over at anchor. Good thing we overdid it on the ground tackle!

The anchorage at Key Cay...we had it to ourselves, but had to cope with the 2-foot chop that built up in the length of a football field.

Some artists have left their mark at Key Cay.

Whisper at anchor at Key Cay.

The islands have a rugged landscape, lots of succulents, sea grapes and palm trees. If you see grass, be guaranteed that it has been planted.

The next morning we sailed over to snorkel the wreck of the RMS Rhone which sunk off Salt Island back in the late 1800s. We picked up a mooring buoy and jumped over board, we were right on top of the wreck. We were both instantly creeped out by diving on a sunken ship so we only stayed in the water for about 20 minutes. The sail to Marina Cay was fast and a little wet but it was worth it to see the Michael Beans show, recommended to us by both Chris and Gary & Beth. Michael is a sailor who is a one-man band at the bar at the top of Marina Cay, singing pirate songs, encouraging pirate toasts and capping the evening off with a conch horn blowing contest. After a good effort, Kristen placed second. This morning we stopped by Michael’s boat and he gave Kristen a quick lesson on her accordion so she’s ready to keep the anchorage up at night!

Michael Beans doing what he does best.

The view of the anchorage at Marina Cay.