Quarantine in St Kitts

You know how in movies “when you want to make it seem like a lot of time has passed you use a montage”? We’re going to montage our way through quarantine, because it was a long time and I really want to be caught back up to present, and because nobody needs to read 10 posts about us sitting on the boat and being sad about being stuck in paradise. Boo fucking hoo, right? So, this will be something of a whirlwind highlight reel.

St Kitts and Nevis closed their borders on March 26th. Since we had been cleared into the country for a week, we assumed we were still allowed to travel freely between the islands. We called the Customs office in St Kitts, and they confirmed that this was OK. So we went for a day sail, picked up one of the mooring balls by the shore, and dinghied into Charlestown to pay for it and walk around a little.

But we were met at the gate by Nevis Customs, which had entirely different ideas. After a great deal of confusion, with us waiting in our dinghies, it was decided that we were not welcome on the island, and could we please fuck right off back to St Kitts.

In which we are still hopeful…

Sigh. Nevis never changed their minds on this, and would continue to sit in the distance taunting us for the remainder of our visit.

So we went back to White House Bay, and visited Salt Plage for what turned out to be their last night in business. Notice our nicely socially-distanced family group!

Lockdown started gradually, first non-essential businesses closing and e.g. grocery stores limiting how many people could be inside. We were wearing masks long before it was cool, BTW. Captain was overwhelmed with all the changes.

Laundry, unfortunately, did not seem to be considered an essential service, and I ended up doing a lot of bucket laundry. (Jazz, still injured, was not able to turn the crank on the wringer. She swears.)

I did have some helpers, though. As the weather got drier, the bees started started to come around looking for fresh water. They were mostly harmless, at least at first, but they tried really hard to drown themselves or drink soapy water, and I felt pretty bad for them.

That is, of course, until Jazz and Captain got stung. Jazz’s sting swelled up monstrously. We decided that it was better not to take any chances on a worse reaction, and instituted a zero-tolerance policy for bee-ridden anchorages. Captain’s sting wasn’t nearly as visible.

Gracie had the first lockdown birthday, and Lisa somehow managed to come up with chocolate strawberries.

Also, Don saved my escaping hat, but then fell in himself. And we ordered delivery, and got Beef Stroganoff with rice, mashed potatoes, and plantains instead of the usual egg noodles. We were a bit disappointed.

With trade winds out of the east, the stern of the boat is always facing west, and so we were treated to spectacular sunsets almost every night. “Sky color time”, as it became known, was definitely one of the highlights.

Sometimes we would experience these from the back of Kraken, instead of Villa. Sometimes Captain would come on these visits.

Other times, Captain would just be weird. Actually that was most of the time. Sometimes brave, too.

My birthday came and went. It was also Easter, so we did the best we could for Easter baskets. Captain helped me cook family dinner, and Gracie made me a bee hive to commemorate the laundry experience.

Right about this time, Kraken found a beach kitten, which they cleaned up and brought to their boat “to foster it for a little while”. Both Captain and Honeybadger were extremely skeptical of this sick and dirty interloper. But the humans had a soft spot for her.

This is about when we discovered that Kraken farts rainbows.

It’s also about when we realized that we needed to occasionally exercise. So I put up our gym. When I use it, sometimes Captain comes and hangs out in the sail bag.

We had a grownups-only party, and Captain passed out on me (definitely not the other way around). Maybe because I finally drank the last of the Emergency Drinking Beer.

Honeybadger also had a birthday. Gracie “baked” her a cake, Friskies pate decorated with anchovies. HB did not care for this at all. Captain, on the other hand, went at it with gusto. (Although maybe this face was more about protesting having to come to the boat with the stinky tiny cat.)

As more news and data came out about COVID-19, it became clear that we were going to be doing this for a while, and we sat down with an absurdly overpowered sewing machine for the job and made some face masks out of the only cotton on hand, some pairs of my shorts that had seen better days.

We had a lot of family dinners and movie nights. Sometimes this meant takeout, when that became possible again. Other times, it meant digging interesting things out of our stores.

We did a lot of cooking in general, actually. Captain is a big fan of helping, at least if there’s meat.

We taught Captain new tricks, like high fives and how to jump through hoops. Sometimes he did it faster than other times, though.

Days passed and brought more sky color times. Captain was always good about making sure we were outside to see them.

This little cutie took a ride up onto our deck on the anchor chain.

Eventually the lockdown got eased, and I managed to get a haircut.

There was some lazing around, some of it in the water. For us, not the Captain.

Also, goats. From the gorgeous Shitten Bay, we could see groups of them walking along the shore twice a day. Unfortunately, Shitten Bay was also Bee Central. Trade-offs.


  1. Stumbled across akv in the blame layer a bit ago and wondered if the floating home was still going strong through the pandemic.

    Funny post. Glad to hear y’all weren’t forced to return to the States. Also, that cat is gorgeous!

    1. Hah! It’s been at least six months, so I think it’s safe to say I hate whatever piece of code that was.

      Great hearing from you, Chris, I hope all’s safe and well in Boulder. Give my best to the rest of the team.

  2. So glad you are sending a glimpse of your life at sea. Looks like you are able to “feed” your fine cuisine tastes! I miss you guys a lot!

  3. Really enjoy your logs, thanks so much for sharing. We are ‘weathering’ out the COVID in Idaho, at the new property we bought on Lake Pend Oreille. Had planned to go back to MA in July, but that seems unlikely now. At least we are all trapped in nice places for this…. fair winds and following seas.

    1. Thanks Jon. We’ve enjoyed seeing photos of the lake house on Facebook. Congratulations on your new boat!

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