190 miles to Bermuda. After two stonking days where we covered over 150 miles each day, the wind died at 1.30 this morning. The resulting sail flappage and ghostly movement gave us two options. Drift about at 2 knots or fire up the engine. The engine has now been on for 9 hours and the wind is still hiding although the sun shines and the sea is flat.
The upside of life under engine is the batteries get a full charge and there’s no boat heeling meaning it’s level down below so a few domestic chores are easier to tick off. The downside has to be the noise and heat both by products from the combustion engine. Fingers crossed the wind will fill in the not too distant future and we can resume sailing again. It’s been a while since we motored anywhere and anyone who sails will I believe be empathetic with that little feeling of relief as the engine is turned off and the intrusive mechanical noise disappears.
The welcoming drink of choice in Bermuda is apparently the ‘dark and stormy’. It’s not a beverage I’m familiar with. Martin who we met in Barbados has recommended several places to sample this offering which is I believe is a dark rum and ginger beer combination. We’re always grateful for local tips on where to hang out or get a top deal. Two other boats, Detour and Calico Skies, who we met in St Martin, left 30 hours before us to head up to Bermuda. Both have visited Bermuda before and mentioned the dark and stormy as a good sundowner. We look forward to seeing them safely anchored in St George’s.
Bermuda should offer a Britishness which we will look forward to. We are lead to believe the economics of buying anything are startling and perhaps not so welcoming. We provisioned in St Martin for 3 weeks with the aim of keeping any purchases on Bermuda to a minimum.
Our guide book tells us the island has pink buses and no household is allowed to own more than one car without special dispensation. All houses must have rainwater catching capacity. ( I knew this already from listening to a world service podcast documentary a couple of of months ago.). Cruise ships dock almost every day pouring their cargo of never ending holidaymakers onto the quayside and streets to support the main industry, tourism. Finance is equally important to the island. I’m curious. Do the bankers wear Bermuda shorts to work? And knee length white socks? My questions will be answered soon.
So it’s good bye for now to the Caribbean. We arrived in Barbados at the end of January and have visited 16 islands as we’ve worked our way up the chain. It already feels a little cooler starting to travel north. I dug out a lightweight pair of tracky bottoms and a thin fleece for night watch. It’s a been a while since such clothes have been needed.