As you can see our little Value Village tree is back out of the closet and hanging in place after a 2 year break. It still looks good, does the job. Last year we were crossing the Atlantic, and even though I did cook a Christmas dinner which we ate out of deep tupperware containers, the gimballing of the tree might have been a bit much. We'll not be aboard Moondancer this Christmas - not sure which Barefoot boat we will be aboard, but that's where we'll be. Originally were both booked on separate boats with 2 different groups of people who didn't want to spend Christmas at home, but preferred to spend it learning to sail in the Windward Islands.
So now by the grace of Liat, our monopolizing uncaring for its customers airline one of those groups' flights were cancelled resulting in the cancellation of their Christmas plans. So that either meant that one of us would stay home alone over Christmas - or we both go on the same boat. That's my vote and that's what we're doing.
Tony is out this week and I have done little other than put up said tree and spend alot of time making a power point collection of photos as a kinda Christmas Card. It took ages to make and then proved to be a great disappointment in the sending department, the file being too big to attach to an e-mail. I did find the 'large file send application', but it took so long that anyone I sent it to would definitely give up on trying to open it. So that took 1 day - and then the next day I put together a photo album which is posted on facebook.
Here's the link.
A year in the life of Nancy and Tony 2011 - 2012
I've also talked to my children to wish them a Happy Christmas, Mary and her family in Saskachewan, Johnny in Ucluelet and Josie in China. My call to Josie this morning was lovely. She was actually teaching her grade 11 class and when I got through to her she turned around her computer camera and her whole class sang We wish you a Merry Christmas to me. Even though they are all Chinese I recognised all of the words. Still have 1 call to make to daughter Georgia in San Fran.
So there is alot of talk here about the Christmas winds. These are the trade winds which brought us to the Caribbean last year. When I was out last week my group and I experienced these festive winds. Most of the time about 20kts with much more in the gusts and more north than east. The easterly trade winds mean that we can sail on a beam reach down and then back up the windward chain. When it goes more north the going down the chain is good on a fairly rolly broad reach, but the coming back is a beat and alot of tacking. So the students certainly know how to tack by the end of the week. And the value of a sheltered anchorage. By May we will have spent a year here in the Grenadines and will have seen the full weather spectrum which definitely changes according to season, even through its pretty much always hot.
We are very busy, either one of us is out every week or both of us at the same time. It will be this way for the next couple of months and Barefoot has got a couple of other instructors coming to help us out. Its very good for us to have this much 'work' - its what we came here for. Note the way I write 'work' - it is our work, but it often doesn't feel like it. Each week we are sailing with a new group of people who are pretty much always great and up and very happy with everything we teach them and show them. We teach them as much as we can about sailing - we take them snorkelling in spectacular locations that we love, short hikes on uninhabited islands, introduce them to this lifestyle, tell them our stories and have fun with them. We walk around 'town' with our ducklings all in a row, knowing that they are seeing all this for the first time. Its a very cool 'job'.