There was more we would have liked to see and do on Culebra but the Christmas Winds were taking a short break and we took the opportunity to get some easting done. We checked out, said adios to friends and headed out of the anchorage.
St. Thomas is not far from Culebra and we had the anchor down on Water Island just off St Thomas in time to contact our friend Katie who lives on the island. Katie met us at a local hangout on the beach in Honeymoon Cove where we enjoyed catching up and making plans for the next few days. After a rolly night in the anchorage Katie took us on a tour of the island in her golf cart and ended at her lovely home. Robin enjoyed the hospitality, view and lack of rocking so much she spent the night while Mike returned to Mermaid.
We moved Mermaid over to Charlotte Amalie where the anchorage was crowded but quite calm. The anchorage was so big a large navy could fit. We would regularly have four large cruise ships, lots of boats and yachts and even sea planes taking off or landing. It was busy but very convenient to provisioning, restaurants, wifi and chandleries.
We moved to Brenners Bay alongside the runway for Christmas and found the anchorage flat calm. Lovely! We snorkeled and enjoyed the bay until it was time for Alan to visit and moved back to Charlotte Amalie for convenience. Alan and his girlfriend Rachel flew in and we had a nice beach day at Honeymoon Cove on Water Island. The following morning we had a boisterous trip over to St. John. We played lots of games, had many snorkeling adventures and an all around good time. Their trip ended all to soon so we returned to Charlotte Amalie where they took an early flight out on New Years Day. After a day or two of rest and recovery, we moved to Hawknest Bay on St John for more snorkeling before heading to the BVI.
We had a lovely, quick sail to Jost Van Dyke in the British Virgin Islands and grabbed a mooring ball as is required many places. The Virgin Islands has installed many moorings to try to protect the reefs. We went to shore and enjoyed Corsairs and Foxy’s remembering lots of memories of our numerous times at these restaurants.
We sailed down to Benures Bay on Norman Island and anchored for a few days. We snorkeled and had dinghy adventures enjoying the peace and beauty. Winds were predicted to become strong and last a couple of weeks so before they moved in we took the opportunity to sail to the North Sound on Virgin Gorda where we would wait for the opportunity to sail to Sint Maarten. We anchored on the west side of the bay off Prickly Pear Island between the Lunch Box and Saba Rock. We were the only boat anchored until the winds kicked up then many, many boats joined us in the calm. The wind blew as predicted for 11 days. We didn’t just sit and wait, this was the North Sound; home of The Bitter End Yacht Club, Saba Rock, Levericks Bay as well as other fun spots. We enjoyed them all! We ate good meals, took in a Michael Bean Happy Arrrrh (or two), enjoyed a few happy hours, watched the Cowboys loose the playoffs, rented a car with Bob and Sarah of Rhapsody and toured the island.