Once Sturmschwalbe had arrived in the anchorage at Carlisle Bay the Cape Verde gang were reunited after the Atlantic crossing. Five boats anchored together just as we had been in Mindelo over two thousand miles across the pond. Great to catch up and talk about our experiences of the trip. I was awarded the prize for best beard (remember the rule that no one could shave)!
We were a little disappointed with Barbados though. Most nights the music from the beach bars blared across the anchorage until 5 or 6 in the morning and one night it was so loud we could hardly hear each other speak when sitting on deck. In the daytime jet skis and pleasure boats blasted past a few feet away. Despite this the people of Barbados were incredibly friendly and the area is safe. The ‘city’ of Bridgetown was interesting to walk through and there are plenty of reminders of its previous life as a British colony. Unfortunately the only photo I took the whole time we were in Barbados was all of us having drinks on Fathom. 14 people (including two babies), a new record for people in the cockpit and the lowest ever waterline!
We made a decision to spend Christmas elsewhere and thought St Lucia would be a better option. Arwen and other French friends on Passmatic headed to Grenada. Fathom and Sturmschwalbe departed Barbados on 22nd December just before noon for an overnight sail to Rodney Bay, St Lucia. Ribouldingue and Hent-Eon left later in the day. Before sunset I was excited to catch a decent sized fish before identifying it as a Barracuda which is not safe to eat due to the risk of Ciguatera disease. Only Tuna and Dorado are 100 % safe in these waters. Emeline from Ribouldingue called up on the VHF before sunset to say they had caught a 1.2m Dorado and we should all refer to it as our Christmas turkey. The sail to St Lucia was quite uneventful and I slept in 30m chunks. Sturmschwalbe were less than 1 mile away the whole time so kept an eye out for me. The highlights of the trip were an unusual double rainbow before sunset (see photo) and a 27 knot squall which hit when I was fast asleep. Anchor went down in Rodney Bay just after sunrise on the 23rd.