Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Family arrived

Around 11:30 the VHF crackled with the call from someone hailing Madness.

"Station hailing Madness, please switch and answer channel seven one...seven
one over"


"Madness, Madness, Madness, this is Cessna niner seven one eight zulu, we
are about 2 miles north east of the rendezvous point, and approaching at 100
kts, please light us up as we fly by"

It was Ray, flying in from south Fla, with Natalie, Kimmie, Anna, and Pete.
They were able to locate me with the help of the flashlight, take some
pictures, then move on to the airport, and clear customs.

We met at the rendezvous point, the bar at the Peace and Plenty hotel home
of Doc Lerman, the best bartender in the Bahamas, were they had taken a room
for the first night. We all enjoyed showers in water that we did not have to
carry, and hung out for a while allowing for the travelers to rest.

Around 16:00 we headed out in Madness for a trip to a nearby reef for a
snorkel, which was surprisingly nice for one so close in the harbor. We
spotted several deadly poisonous lionfish, a stingray, small grouper, and of
course many parrotfish, angelfish, blennys, wrasse, snapper, tangs,
clownfish, etc.

I went back to the boat a little early and started dinner, cooking some of
the meat and vegetables that they smuggled over from the mainland. (While
they were detained briefly by the customs officials, they were able to get
goods through) We had a very nice dinner of pork loins marinated in garlic
and ginger, ate the last of our Mahi Mahi, salad, and potatoes au gratin. We
cooked and enjoyed dinner under sail in 4-5 kt winds, ghosting along at 1.5
kts or so. Barely moving, but moving fast enough to get back by nightfall.

On the cruisers net (Channel 68 at 0800), we heard the woes of another boat
that had the misfortune of having been boarded by a local pirate. The
cruiser had suffered damage to many of his systems but so far has not been
personally harmed. There is hope for him, however. We know this because he
has managed to send a message via Morse code using what remains of his VHF
and damaged electrical systems. He has managed to sequester himself in a
safe part of the boat, and has set booby traps to kill, maime or capture the
pirate known as Reggie the Rat.