Sunday, March 13, 2011
STANIEL KEY WITH NICK AND SUE
We are in Staniel Cay after a couple of nice days at Warderick Cay and Shroud Cay.
There is a lot to tell and a lot of pictures to show, but the Internet here at Staniel Cay is very slow, so I do not know if pictures will upload in a timely manner.
Our little sailing group arrived in Warderick Cay on Wednesday. Activities included hiking, snorkeling, beach parties, and cocktail parties on other boats. We were on a mooring in the Emerald Rock section, others were in the North Mooring field in the cutout of the channel between the Atlantic Ocean and Exuma Sound. Seven boats came down from Shroud Cay and stayed together.
We left on Saturday for Staniel Cay so that Nick and Sue could spend two days at Staniel. We are at the Staniel Yacht between a large 90 foot motor yacht and behind us is a 65 foot catamaran.
Today, Joy, Nick and Sue went to Thunderball Cavern to do some snorkeling. I stayed behind because Joy and I both thought I would have trouble getting into the dinghy after snorkeling. Since my injury to my left shoulder, I do not have a lot of strength in that arm. Turns out the water depth was only 4 feet so I probably could have climbed in the dinghy. However, not being a strong swimmer due to the injury, I might have had trouble with the current getting into and out of the cavern.
After they got back we walked around the small town here at Staniel. Most everything is closed either to economics or the fact that it is Sunday and the native owners were all at church. There is one church, the Mt. Olivet Bapist Church.
The boat is holding up well. Found out today while filling the empty water tanks that we only hold 95 gallons of water instead of 120. Also we use very little electricity, so far in two days the meter reads 6 kilowatts which is $4.50. Spent ten times as much for the water fill up.
Also the front head is acting up again with the sump pump not working properly. Blew a 15 amp fuse today, and does not want to work. Have to recheck it sometime.
Going to try and upload some pictures.
Having Nick and Sue on the boat for the week has added immensely to our enjoyment. Besides having fun hiking and snorkeling, we could play cards in the evening, either Euchre or Pitch.
The highlight of our stay at Shroud Cay was a dinghy ride through the mangroves up one of the creeks, that runs through the island, which is navigable from half tide to full tide. Coming out on the ocean side is a beautiful long beach with the array of blues from the beach to the deep waters. There was a hiking path to the top of a hill with a spectacular view. We even say a shark about 20 feet off the beach!
The snorkeling around Warderick Cay had quite a variety of spots, some with lots of fish and another with corals that I have never seen before in such abundance and variety. There were purple fan corals three feet tall along with many others that I don't know the name of. Today in Staniel Cay we snorkeled in Thunderball Cave, which was in the 1964 James Bond movie, Thunderball. Most people enter at low tide, which is when you can swim into the cave. Otherwise, you have to dive under and swim into it which none of us was up to. When we got in the water from our dinghy, there were hundreds of fish around us and many followed us into the cave. They probably thought we would have food, as we found out that everyone else brought oatmeal, rice, or bread to feed them. There was quite a current running through the cave, so we had to work a little to propel ourselves in. Inside the cavern opened up to about 25 feet high with natural lighting from the top.
The few shops in town include three which sell a limited amount of groceries- the General Store, the Blue store, and the Pink store. You can find limited fruits and veggies and canned goods. Those from the states are expensive- Nabisco Ginger Snaps- over $6 and the ones from England- $2. So we buy English and they are good. There is a house where bread is sold. When I stopped there yesterday, a young girl was shredding coconuts for the coconut bread that will be ready on Monday. I was told to come back then as there was no bread on Saturday. Today when Joe was in the restaurant he met the sister of the breadmaker who was the waitress. She said to go back today for whole wheat bread, which we did, and used for grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches for lunch. We will return tomorrow for the coconut bread and cinnamon raisin!
We will miss our company as they leave tomorrow on a nine passenger plane to Nassau to take them back to the States. They are to get to the airport 15 minutes before the plane departs and since it is a short walk from our marina, we will walk with them to bid them goodbye. There is no building or security, just an agent in a golf cart that checks you in!