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 April 2012

Bobby, Ann and Betty

 

Ann’s parents, Bobby and Betty, were still visiting onboard as April arrived and we sailed over to enjoy the (British) Virgin Islands for a few days. After many years of visiting this area, we just learned that the area that we have been referring to as British Virgin Islands is officially known as Virgin Islands. “British” is commonly added to distinguish between these islands and their neighbors the U.S. Virgin Islands.

 


Sailboat race 

 

 

 

As we sailed over to the (British) Virgin Islands, we found ourselves in the midst of at least two of several sailboat races that were part of the BVI Spring Regatta and Sailing Festival. There were several beautiful scenes as we watched dozens of boats sailing between the beautiful islands. We didn’t win a race, but we had to slow down and change course several times so as not to interfere with the competition.


 Fallen iguana

 

When we returned to the U.S. Virgin Islands, we went ashore in St. John to check-in with customs and immigration. We decided to “take a tour” of St. John by riding the local transit bus from Cruz Bay on the west end of St. John to Salt Pond Bay on the far east end of the island. It was an interesting ride for all of us since we had been around the island by boat, but had not traveled around the island by car. After our tour we ate lunch at an outdoor café by the park in Cruz Bay. During our lunch, a large iguana dropped out of a tree and hit the umbrella over one of the dining tables. The restaurant staff told us that was the second time it had happened that day. Earlier in the day an iguana fell from the tree, missed the umbrella and hit a woman who was dining. We felt fortunate that this iguana hit the umbrella rather than landing on one of us!


We have been thinking a lot about our cruising life and recently came to a big decision. We have decided to take a break from our cruising life and live on land for a while. At the beginning of our big adventure we planned to cruise for five to seven years. As mid-March arrived, we started our seventh year of cruising and we are looking for an opportunity to experience another chapter in our life. Our current plans are to live in our home in Punta Gorda, FL (a home we have owned, but where we have never lived) and keep Livin the Dream on our dock in a canal. If we live on land, we will need to find some type of employment. So we will be looking for jobs once we return. There are some wonderful cruising destinations in southwest Florida and we hope that we can continue to enjoy getting away on Livin the Dream for short trips. We love the cruising life and know that we will miss it a lot. It just seems like time to try something different for a while, hoping we will return to this lifestyle in a few years.

Nick and Deanna

 

In mid-month our cruising friends Nick and Deanna, formally on Caribbean Soul, joined us for a visit. They arrived in the Caribbean the same year as we did and we enjoyed traveling with them and having great fun throughout the Eastern and Western Caribbean. About two years ago they returned to land and sold Caribbean Soul. Our first destination during their visit was to Peter Island, (British) Virgin Islands where we met up with Jim and Amanda aboard Catsy, and Barb and Chuck aboard Tusen Takk II. Jim and Amanda hosted us for dinner aboard Catsy and it was great fun catching up with these wonderful cruising friends who all arrived in the Eastern Caribbean at the same time six years ago.


 Barb, Ann, Deanna, Amanda

We enjoyed scuba diving off St. John and John was lucky to get a lobster on our dive, providing the topping for a lobster pizza. Livin the Dream had a wonderful sail over to St. Croix averaging 7.2 knots for the 35 mile trip. On St. Croix we enjoyed more scuba diving off the famous wall to the north of the island. The coral formations were beautiful and Nick had fun playing with a moray eel. It was great fun to spend time with Nick and Deanna and to also have them help out so much on the boat while there were around.


 

nick and moray eeljuvenile spotted drum
 


 

 

 

 

 


 

 


After Nick and Deanna departed from St. Croix, we had another nice sail back to St. John. We managed to scuba dive a couple of more times and put another lobster in the freezer before the end of the month. We are trying to make the most of every day, since we don’t know when we will be back in this area and have all these great opportunities aboard Livin the Dream.

Our daughter Ashley and her husband Mike arrive in early May for a quick visit before we plan to sail back to the U.S. in mid-May.