We’re back aboard Altair in Antigua after a wonderful holiday at home in Alta, Utah. It was bliss seeing Laura & Matt and lots of friends, and skiing the greatest snow on Earth. Alta is looking at an epic season, of course. Enjoy!
January 8th – still on the dock at Catamaran Marina. There are quite a few Oysters here and more arriving each day. This is the place to be to get any work done on the boat, have the rigging checked and meet other OWR crews. There is definitely a sense of comradery developing as we swap stories about our voyages to Antigua. Many of the boats sailed from Gran Canaria with the ARC (Atlantic Rally for Cruisers). These boats already have many miles and an Atlantic crossing under their belts as they await the start of the Oyster World Rally.
We have signed on a new crew member – Neil! He’s moving on board today. We’ll spend the next week showing him the boat and training – we’ll go out for some sails, practice anchoring, and attempt another heart-stopping stern-to docking when we move over to Nelson’s Dockyard for the OWR kick off. See separate post as I’ve added his profile here.
Jan. 11th – On the dock at historic Nelson’s Dockyard, surrounded by OWR boats. This time the stern-to docking went quite smoothly. This was Neil’s first time handling the anchor/stern-to docking and he was great. We’ve been using our passerelle (gang plank) to get on & off Altair – can be very challenging.
Today we attended a seminar – Crew Safe. It was mostly common sense, but we learned about important security issues we could encounter during our travels. It was quite sobering. They stressed the importance of our fleet watching out for each other, especially when small groups go off on their own.
Jan. 13 - Very excited! We have started an OWR Book Club – We will read Falling by Elizabeth J. Howard. I managed to download the book with the 3G on my kindle. The first meeting will be somewhere in Panama . . .
Tonight is the OWR Start Party with cocktails, canapes, dinner and dancing late into the evening. The will be Dress code is “smart”. Hmmm.
Jan. 14th – Tomorrow is the official start to the OWR. Last minute repairs, provisioning, etc. The Oyster Team on the ground is here racing around to help us all be safe and ready. As far as provisioning goes, I have found that small local roadside stands have the best produce, or I buy it from vendors walking the docks.
The lack of WiFi here is frustrating. Everything is via email or must be researched online. If we’ve missed an email or FB comment or anything, please bear with us!
Just went to the christening of our neighbor boat, Shanties. The owners are from Poland and they just took delivery of the boat about a week ago! Really cool “re-naming” ceremony and party with delicious food. The name of the boat is based on a sea shanty music festival in Poland.
This afternoon is the Captains’ Briefing. Everybody has their own plan until we reconvene at the Panama Canal. There will be 2 daily roll calls and briefings on the SSB (single side band radio) each day. I find this very comforting. Time to get going. Please follow us on the tracker! We’ll be in touch in a week or so when we reach our next port – if there is internet ha ha.
To absent friends and those at sea, God bless and God bless the Queen