Boating & Biking Adventures

Author: Bernd Page 1 of 62

…April Weather…

The weather this morning invites for a slow start and a second cup of coffee. It remains a bit unpredictable, early morning duck pond with no wind, couple of hours later pouring and 20kn gusting. Minutes later, blue sky and sunshine. Glad I took the bike ride yesterday.

Slowly we will plan for our departure.

Fair winds…

PAYS – Farewell Dinner

The first ever PAYS Yachting Festival 2023 endet with a closing function celebrated at Fort Shirley. It seems to be a given, that part of these functions is not only a live celebration of the Dominican Anthem but also a short prayer is included in the program. Both are another true reflection of the Dominican culture.

Speeches, appreciations towards employees & supporters, quiz game, incredible bongo band, delicious food, free flow of rum punch, etc. Towards the end, it took the DJ five beats until the dance floor was getting busy. 

Even Miss Dominica 2023 turned up!

A big THANK YOU to PAYS and all people involved for a great festival week in a spectacular country with very warmhearted people.

Fair winds…

🚴‍♂️…Nothern Circle…👌

It became time for another ride on “The Nature Island”. Sunday morning, Daniel must have had a hard night and did not pick me up at 6am as agreed. Took my own dinghy instead and off we went!

Although the terrain is partly a bit steep and I had to walk the bike along, it was worth every bit of pain. The exceptional Cold Soufriere on the return part of the trip leaves more questions open than before. Why cold? Why muddy water here and crystal clear water there? Etc.

I am glad, that at least I got my butt out of the bunk this morning.

Fair winds…

…natural disasters…

I am using these representive photos to illustrate the challenges a country exposed to natural disasters has got to cope with. On one side a building completely restored, or perhaps a new development, on the other side its neighbour.

Putting it in another perspective: I met Smily the other day, one of the boat boys offering his services here within the anchorage. He carried a 6m stem of tree with a diameter of  20cm on his shoulder and an axe in his hand walking alongside the road into my opposite direction. The answer to my naive question of what he wants to do with this tree came prompt: rebuilding my house! I felt a bit silly to put it blandly.

Walking into town I pass this building to the right. On my first walk I was so impressed, that they have public toilets in this place, for visitors. Wishful thinking obviously, there seems to be no sewage system and its meant to be for common use of the local people.

Public toilet along the road into town.

The recent two natural disasters in 2015 (Tropical Storm Erika) and in 2017 (Tropical Storm Maria) caused severe damages. While the damage of the first one was only in the range of 90% GDP equivalent, two years later Maria caused damages equivalent to more than 200% of Dominica’s GDP. Even more shocking the number of death being close to 80 combined. Hard to get back on your feed.

As a boatie, I feel it is a good opportunity to be here and contribute as much as we can to support Dominica in its recovery. Every dollar counts and the spirit of its people definitely deserves it.

“Reggae & Rum” might play part in people’s recovery, leaving Cannabis aside.

Fair winds…

☝️…Portsmouth Market…👍

Butcher !
Fruits & Vegetables !
Seafood !

I am just back from the Saturday Market in town to replenish some of our vegetables. Butcher and Seafood part I gave a glance only but did not buy anything despite the fact that it looked very fresh.

There is plenty of choice, most is locally produced and only very selective items are imported. As fertilisers are rarely used, the local products still have a very intensive natural flavor.

The island has a lot to offer, also in terms of food.

Fair winds…

…the party goes on…

The PAYS Yachting Festival 2023 goes on. Besides the program during the days, there is every night different music and entertainment. Tonight was a jazz combo, talented musicians from two boats, which apparently are very well known here in the Lesser Antilles.

It does not take many beats and the dance floor is taken by locals as well as boaties. Clearly, the locals get more enthusiastic on Reggae, is my personal impression.

Bento, one of the great boat boys took me back home. Perfect taxi service for a small fee, which does not kill your budget and helps them a lot. 

Fair winds…

…Douglas Bay…

Today’s sundowner @ Roots & Rock Bar !

☝️…my favourite 📻

The Grenada minibus was our first hardcore experience with Reggae since we arrived in the West Indies. It was not only loud, the vibes not stimulating at all, rather painful.

In the meantime, my favourite station is ReggaeTrade streamed out of Zug/CH (!). Light beats with reggae typical lyrics. Very similar what they play here on Dominica.

Have a great start into the weekend!

Fair winds…

Click to listen into ReggaeTrade!

PAYS – Barbecue

Normally these rum punches get watery the later the evening but not at the PAYS BBQ event tonight. Tasty and in free flow along with vibrating reggae music, entertainment and company until late into the night. Tempting and dangerous.

Glad I don’t have a dinghy license as that would have been at hight risk on the way back to our mooring.

Took me a while to finally overcome the hangover but it has been worth the pain!

Fair winds…

…double rainbow…

Mixed weather during the PAYS Yachting Festival 2023 here in Portsmouth/Dominica.

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