My perfect cousin

Conception Island delivered us a pet. We named him Fergal. He had undertones of menace but like most pets, was allegedly pretty chilled as long as you didn’t try to poke him or upset him.

Fergal arrived as soon as dropped anchor in the bay. He had 3 friends with him and they cruised slowly underneath the boat for maybe twenty minutes before heading off into the blue. He came back the next day about the same time, a couple of hours before sunset. Guess he has a watch or a sun dial. Or evening munchies.

Nurse sharks are supposedly just like big fish and won’t bother humans as long as you don’t bother them. I have to report we didn’t check that out in person. Something longer than me mooching about under your boat is not conducive to a spur of the moment swim. And I didn’t particularly fancy sharing the same space.

We did swim, but close to shore. And had several rounds of bat and ball over the two days we were here. Can’t imagine it does much for your tennis with many randomly improvised shots but we had some fun and it’s surprisingly knackering exercise.

The interior of Conception Island is mostly a lagoon surrounded by mangroves. We took the dinghy over the breaking sand bar, navigating the dog leg and anchored it up in a small bay just inside. Then we continued on the paddle boards till the route became too shallow even for them. The tide was honking out so it was quite hard work. We saw a few turtles and fish although not as many as in other places. Which was surprising as it’s a National Park here and we thought there’d be loads.

We’d done a circular trip a few days earlier on the boards on Cat Island. Up an inlet, through the flats then back along the ocean shore. It was well over 4 miles according to the route finding on navionics. Not bad for us novices.

Cat Island was amusing and included afternoon drinks with a mad friendly family who had a beautiful house on the beach. I first thought that passing boats gave them an excuse to have a social drink in the afternoon. Then it dawned on me, they didn’t need any excuse whatsoever to have a drink in the afternoon. (I had to battle to get a straight ginger beer without rum). The two women of advancing years seems to enjoy embarrassing their sons who were about our age by going skinny dipping in the evening. Another property along the beach was called Two Moons.

It felt like a community which had a backstory. Maybe 15 houses on the beach. A mix of 2 week holiday makers and long-termers who spend several months each winter there. The long-termers all knew each other and on the surface everything was jolly. But like a 6 week drama series on tv, there were stories to be told about each character and maybe secrets to be shared.

I will never know if this was just my mind working overtime. But I could be pitching the idea to some tv producers in the near future!

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