Day 2 was easy sailing also. It was “on again, off again” with the engine and a lot of furl and unfurling of the spinnaker. The wind would be light and then go to nothing. But the seas were flat, so we were all happy. This is only the second time we have used the spinnaker this season. I’ve been surprised at how windy the Caribbean has been.

All was going well with the spinnaker until… all goes wrong. Remember, it’s day 2 and we are lacking sleep. It started by me not furling the sail up fast enough which made it not wrap exactly right. Then we decided that there was enough wind to launch the spinnaker AND the main sail. Chris attempted to put the main sail up while going downwind. This is not a good practice and only works in light wind. We have done it before but this time it definitely did NOT work. So we had to turn into the wind and at that point the “not perfectly furled” spinnaker started to unfurl. From here on, I don’t even remember the details. All I remember was Chris and I yelling at each other and the spinnaker eventually being dropped into the water. I pulled the sail out of the water, shoved it in the bag, and stormed off inside. Chris then spent the next 45 minutes straightening everything out – by himself. This took me back to our days sailing in the south pacific and that damn spinnaker giving us a hard time then. Chris eventually came inside and adamantly stated, “We will NOT even HAVE a spinnaker on our next boat!” I chuckled. We then used the spinnaker the rest of our trip.

Our second night out was just as peaceful as our first. The only problem was that we were moving very slowly. We hoped to average at least 6 knots / hour and we were averaging around 4.5. Ugh. That meant we would arrive just before dark when we thought we would arrive in the morning. At least we would make it before dark.

At 6pm on day 3 we were pulling up to Big Sand Cay. It was beautiful. It’s an uninhabited island and there were only 2 other boats anchored here. We set the hook and noted that this is the first place in the Caribbean that feels rustic. A beautiful island, out in the middle of no where, with no people. None of our books make proclamations about this beach, but it really is one of “the most beautiful.” And that’s coming from someone who has seen a lot of beaches.

share save 171 16 April 25, 2015:  Puerto Rico to Turks and Caios, Day 2 & 3

We left Bocarotan at 10am. We had 300NM to travel in order to get to Turks and Caicos. We would skirt the Dominican Republic but not stop. We had to get moving north. This passage has been on our minds since we left Trinidad. We have had one overnight passage from Trinidad to Grenada and my parents were onboard. This would be our first overnight passage with just us and Finley… and it would be 2 full nights and 3 days our at sea. We left thinking it was going to be hell.

The first day was easy. We motored for a bit in NO wind and then set the spinnaker for the rest of the day. The seas were flat so taking care of Finley was business as usual. If Finley can at least walk around and play while we are underway, life is much better. When the seas are rough and she can’t walk, that’s when life gets bad for all of us. Day 1 turned out to be a breeze! I pre-made a bunch of food for all of us, but the ride was so smooth, I decided to make hamburgers for our first dinner out. Since Finley always wants to eat whatever Chris and I were eating, we ended up giving her a few bites of our hamburgers. Of course she loved it and surprised us with saying her 1st 3-syllable word… “hamburger!” Don’t worry, I don’t think she’s a baby genius, since she still only has a few 2-syllable words (uh-oh, Babu, and backpack to an them exactly) but she clearly said, “hamburger.” All other words are still only 1-syllable including mom, dad, bye. Still no mama, daddy, or bye-bye. She keeps it simple.

Night one we switched up our usual 3-hour watch system. Instead I went on watch from 9pm-2am and then Chris took over from 2am-7am. It actually worked out really good. Chris watched the boat as I put Finley to bed around 8pm and then I drank a huge cup of coffee. It was a beautiful night watch and made me actually miss our long passages. The stars were out in full force and the half-moon was beautiful. I miss the sounds, smells and sights of a night watch. I reflected on all our passages of the past; the rowdy ones, the peaceful ones, the long ones and the short ones… I stared at the stars and watched the spinnaker in awe of all we have done on this vessel in the past few years. This could very well could be our last overnight passage. We shouldn’t have to sail overnight again from Turks and Caicos to Florida. Crazy.

share save 171 16 April 23, 2015:  Passage from Puerto Rico to Turks and Caicos, Day 1

April 22nd, 2015: Boqueron, Puerto Rico

by Sara on April 22, 2015

After a good night of sleep we woke up and went into town to explore Boqueron. It was a sleepy town with tons of bars and restaurants that were closed. We heard this place completely comes alive on the weekends. One boat told us that you can’t even walk through the streets on a Saturday. We were here on a Wednesday so everything was super quiet. We went to the beach and then had dinner at a cute little pizza place. We are usually anti-eating out these days but we thought we would try it again. It worked out ok because the restaurant had an HD, Spanish version of the cartoon Tarzan playing on a tv. We sat by the tv and Finley was mesmerized the whole meal. She doesn’t get much screen time but she loves it when she does. After our meal we headed back to Tumbleweed to get some rest before our dreaded 2 night passage. I have dreaded this passage since we left Trinidad. Not that 300 NM is anything in the grand scheme of all our travels, but with Finley being as active as she is these days, I can’t image what a 3 day passage will be like. I’m about to find out.

share save 171 16 April 22nd, 2015:  Boqueron, Puerto Rico