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Our week with a volcano

Our week with a volcano

As Ailsa finishes locking the door and turns around, she sees a cloud that could only be described as Death Star-like in its imposition on the sky. The last of the sunset light gives parts of the dark mass a foreboding glow. To say the past week has been surreal is an understatement. It was […]

On quarantine, memories, and the perception of time

On quarantine, memories, and the perception of time

As children, especially before the age of 10, we are constantly having new experiences. Our world is always growing, and we are always making new neural connections. We see, hear, taste, smell, feel, and learn. I fully believe that the vaseline-blur on the lens of my childhood holidays was my brain learning about new climates, […]

The big move – from Scotland to Bequia!

The big move – from Scotland to Bequia!

Our flight lands as scheduled at around 3 pm. We dutifully wait until others have disembarked to make sure we stay socially distanced. Once off the plane we join the “negative test result” queue and are given red wrist bands. Everything gets a little bit scary when an official tells us our PCR tests aren’t […]

Dominica and Îles des Saintes on the Big Big

Dominica and Îles des Saintes on the Big Big

Back on board we stow the dinghy, with some stress as the winch comes apart and we can’t repair it. It’s starting to look like our easy remaining sailing days may not be that easy after all… In our last blog, we found ourselves in Dominica. We’d just completed our first border crossing, from Guadeloupe, […]

Aboard the Big Big in Guadeloupe

Aboard the Big Big in Guadeloupe

Back at our pontoon (which has very good security), we encounter a little too much naked Frenchman. The group on the yacht next door has decided that all men should shower fully naked on deck. When you’re moored side by side, rather than on anchor, it’s a little close for comfort! TRIGGER WARNING – Bereavement, […]

Pelican Pete Part 3 – a rocky homecoming

Pelican Pete Part 3 – a rocky homecoming

There’s a swell, and big waves that we bounce off, meaning a fair soaking to keep us awake. I sit on the cockpit sole, my favourite place when it’s wild. We’re making good time and feeling the end is near when I spot that the backstays are flapping. The forestays must also be, as the […]

Pelican Pete Part 2 – exploring the Grenadines

Pelican Pete Part 2 – exploring the Grenadines

Just as I’m standing on the coach roof pulling down the last of the mainsail Colin makes an exclamation. I turn around to see the fishing line wasn’t just stuck on the dinghy, it had a fish on it! A sizeable one that’s still alive! We’re dumbfounded for a minute, then bring it in. We’d […]

Pelican Pete, our first bareboat

Pelican Pete, our first bareboat

We walk up the steep hill to Firefly and arrive in the midst of a glamorous party. A woman bee-lines over to us, arms wide open. Before we can react she hugs and kisses us and says it’s great to see us again. It’s all so sudden we just smile. We wrestle with coming clean […]

Training, flotilla style, in Croatia

Training, flotilla style, in Croatia

Catching a mooring ball and adding an extra rope is a farce. It takes four of us. At least I think I’m taking an active role – I’m sitting on Colin’s bum to stop him going over! The closing advice from our Coastal Skipper practical in 2016 was that we needed to get out and […]

RYA Coastal Skipper in Grenada

RYA Coastal Skipper in Grenada

Clifton looks like the Caribbean in people’s dreams. Shallow reefs and sand bars make the water a stunning range of turquoise and blue shades. Palm trees line the beaches. Yachts bob around peacefully, and a kite surfer dots about inside the reef. Immediately after we completed our Day Skipper practical course in the BVIs in […]