Jan 4 - Rodney Bay, St. Lucia

Pos: N14deg05.05min/ W060deg57.53min. We had an uneventful passage from Bequia to Rodney Bay, St. Lucia (just the way we like it). Departing at about 1630 hours, we had a pretty good sail to the west side of St. Vincent, hitting over 8 knots at times. That ended a few miles into the lee of the island, where we had to crank up the motor in little wind. The passing 25-32 knot squalls kept life interesting, and putting the second reef in, shaking the second reef out, putting more jib out, taking more jib in...well, you probably get the idea. We anchored at 1030 in the morning in 13' of water in front of a nice beach, avoiding the most crowded areas as well as the marina. Although tired, we launched the dinghy, put on the newly serviced Tohatsu 9.8 outboard, and almost got to the marina. The engine ran for 5 minutes and died. Of course, I had no tools with me, so we paddled like Hiawatha, as one of the oars has a broken oarlock whose repair didn't hold....Fun and games. After a few hundred yards, a couple of young guys took mercy and towed us in to the dinghy dock. Looking around for the Customs Office, we promptly ran into some friends of ours we had first met at Bequia, Chis and David of sv Platina, and it was like old times. After a bit, we bolted to the Health Office, apparently to ensure we weren't carrying, nor subject to, any communicable diseases, then it was up the stairs to Customs, which, by the way, uses the eSail Clear computer system. More stamped forms, then over to Immigration, and finally, to the Port Captain's desk. As he wasn't there, we were instructed to return in the morning to pay our port fees. We managed a tow back to Infini (thanks, Horst of sv Sapphire), and by that time, it was late afternoon and we both needed some rest. It's great to be here. There's a 0830 morning VHF radio net which provides, among other details, a very detailed weather report. Good stuff. We'll start exploring tomorrow; g'night all.
Pic: We awoke to a new neighbor. More eye candy.

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