Grenada, the Spice Isle : estimated population of 110.000, capital is St.George.Was under French and British ruling. Is independent since 1974. The island country consists of Grenada itself and 6 smaller islands in the southeastern Caribbean Sea. 85% of the inhabitants are from African descent because of the slavery for the sugar cane plantations. Slavery was abolished in 1834. In 1843 nutmeg was introduced to the island and now accounts for 40% of the world nutmeg production. They use the Eastern Caribbean dollar (1 XCD = 0.3 EUR).
Saturday August 29th, we were excited to go to Grenada Marine and go see the boat ! And yes, it was still there. It was great seeing that everything was like in the pictures and even better. I am really looking forward to get the boat in the water and find a nice anchoring spot where we can settle down, have a cocktail and see the sun set :-). We inventorised (actually Stefan more than I) what was on the boat by taking pictures and clearly localise every item. I was amazed at how much there is on the boat and how well organised. Thank you Steve and Tracy ! It was very hot on the boat and we were soaking in sweat in no time. We finished the day with a Carib Beer at the Marina bar (The Alley) and a swim in the sea at the hotel. The water temperature is for sure about 26degrees Celsius. We enjoyed a nice dinner near the beach at our Hotel La Sagesse.
Sunday, August 30th, nobody is working today .We did go to the boat after lunch but there was not really a lot we could do. We did some reading and swimming at the beach, just relax and hope we would have our stuff shipped from Belgium tomorrow.
Monday, August 31st, went to the airport not sure if we would be able to get our shipment out of customs as we heard lots of stories where it sometimes takes several days. We got there around 11AM and I think by 11.40 we had our boxes. We were so lucky Stefan had well organised and labeled all the boxes. We had a list of the contents of every box with pictures. They did check two boxes and they were impressed how well organised Stefan was. We paid “a small price” (about 50 Caribbean Dollars) for customs and about 130EC Dollars for the airline handling. By noon we were back at the boat with all our boxes and could start unpacking. It was great to be able to give everything a place although I think once we are sailing we will probably change some things around. We ended the day at the marina happy with our accomplishment and a Carib at the Marina bar.
Tuesday, September 1st, We went to Spiceland Mall with the local buses (quite an experience) and bought some food and some small things for the boat. They have many fruit stands along the road with excellent fruit from mangos, pineapple, watermelon and avocados. In the meantime they removed the name off the boat so we could put the new name on before they wax the boat. Not a lot is happening with the work on the boat. It is not easy to adjust to the “Island time rhythm”, we are so used to getting everything done quickly….We will have to adapt 🙂
Wednesday, September 2nd, Stefan worked on the chain of the anchor (putting in depth indicators ) I felt a little useless and started to clean some of the rust on the deck around the edges with a toothbrush. In trying to adjust the letters for the new name on the boat, I fell from the last step, unfortunately not in the water but on the ground…I defintely bruised one or two ribs. Luckily I can say today (Sept.7) I am already feeling better. Putting on the new name was not a success :-(. To make a long story short we ended up taking the letters back off as it did not look right. I did not like the colour and the font Stefan had chosen in Belgium so I was not so unhappy we would have to get new ones. As ususal we had a Carib at the marina bar hoping we would be able to get the boat in the water by monday…
Thursday, September 3rd, Stefan went to get the anchor he won at the Essex boat show back in May. With Keith’s help he managed to get it exchanged for a more suitable Rocna anchor here in Grenada. Thank you Keith !!! I stayed at the hotel, recovering with my bruised ribs and reading my book (The Line of Beauty from Alan Hollinghurst, good book but as I am reading in English it goes a bit slower). Stefan came back with not so good news regarding the boat…They would have to do more stripping on the boat before they can start putting on new layers of paint, so wednesday would be the earliest we can get the boat in the water. Time for another swim in the sea and accept things as they are. We have time…
Friday, September 4th, went to the marina to check on the work in progress, check in the office for a place where they can do the lettering and check on the produce market they should have in the marina ( only the produce market was the day before). We only realised late in the afternoon that it was friday today and not thursday…We went to St.George by local bus to the lettering place and luckily they could do the work immediately. We were happy to take back the new boatname with us and were ready for a restaurant (it was 4PM). I had looked on the internet and read some good reviews about “Patrick’s” restaurant, so that is where we went.We had a wonderful meal with 18 different tapas. We were the only ones there, clearly not tourist season yet. This will start beginning of November when hurricane season is over.
Saturday and Sunday, September 5-6,we did some sightseeing. We went to St.Georges to see the Fort and the National museum of Grenada and on Sunday we got the driver from the hotel “Bony” to drive us around to Grand Etang National Park. Bony showed us the Mona monkeys, he feeds them on regular basis, and so they know when he comes. We were fortunate he was with us as otherwise we probably would not have seen them. Only one came to take the banana. Then off to Grand Etang Lake to feed the fish, incredible how quickly a piece of bread was gone. Stefan and I hiked to the Seven Sister waterfall and took a fresh dive into the water there. We were not alone. At night we had dinner with a just married couple from Israel living in London, really nice. We hope we can have the boat ready before they leave so we can have them over as probably our first visitors.