The next leg took us off the Exuma Banks into the Sound, forfeiting the island chain’s natural protection from the prevailing easterlies. We could have made George Town in a single bouncy day, but we looked at the weather and decided to break it up a bit. We staged right next to a private island, Musha Cay, called out in the guidebooks as renting for $42,000 a night, seven night minimum. For this:
Worth it? Who knows.
We anchored off Rudder Cut Cay in about the shallowest water we’ve been in so far. Villa is a shallow-draft champion!
The real draw of this anchorage, though, is an underwater statue we got to visit in the morning, “The Musician”:
The outside section was a bit bouncy, so we were glad to get back out of the sound and stop overnight at Black Cay. We found a lovely little beach there, and anchored next to it in a comfortable five feet of water and soft sand. We snorkeled our way to shore through patchy grass – more an excuse to swim a little after the shaky ride than a sight-seeing expedition, but there were some critters along the way, and a big ray waiting for us by the shore. The sea cucumber looks… well, not alive. And we loved the rainbow light on the starfish!
In the morning, we decided to tackle some of the creeping mess that had accumulated in the past few days’ bustle. And to finally get some of the extra chain out of our front locker: everyone we talk to tells us we’re carrying an insane amount of chain, so we’re reducing our secondary anchor from 160 to 60, with much lighter-weight rode if we need to pay out more length. The extra hundred feet, 110 lbs, went into a bucket, which I carried back to the transom. The hope is that making her nose a little lighter will reduce the slamming as we head into waves. Time will tell. The real impetus: we’d heard we might be able to trade it away in Georgetown.
Georgetown, as expected, was full of boats. We took a not-particularly-well-protected anchorage, since we weren’t expecting much wind, and settled in for what turned out to be a surprisingly bumpy night. In the morning, we went into town to buy groceries and diesel, only to discover that nearly everything was closed, and that the only place that had any diesel had a broken pump. Ah well. We dropped the jerry-cans back at the boat, and headed out to a pig roast at Chat and Chill, on Volleyball Beach. We’d expected to find more cruisers, but mostly it was full of vacationers. We haven’t fully gotten the hang of meeting other cruisers yet. It feels like we’re unusual anyway, doing this childless in our “early” thirties, where most people we meet are either retired or focusing on their live-aboard kids. Are we just going to the wrong social events, the wrong islands? But the venue was pretty, the beers were cold, and the pig was roasted. And we ran into Ddraig again, just as we were about to leave, and had a nice time chatting with them before retreating to our boat to plan the next leg.
Also, there were beach cats.