We were last in Trinidad in early 1998 after crossing the Atlantic Ocean nearly completing our circumnavigation. Then we had our 4 boys with us and came to Trinidad to do some needed maintainence. We stayed at what was then called Hummingbird Marina and enjoyed the food, people and cultures of Trinidad. We remembered Scotland Bay for its howler monkeys and many large jellyfish and green parrots flying in pairs through the skies.We remembered oily dirty water and friendly happy people.
We had paper charts only, no chart plotter. We navigated by portable GPS and still carried our sextant but rarely pulled it out.
Had a radar but no AIS system to help with traffic. Had SSB but no ipad for communication. .
We no longer have to fit in schooling and reading books aloud but i also do not play as many board games or scrabble. instead i play words with friends and read books quietly.
Yes, life was very different then. Same boat with different paint job and fewer crew now.
One year ago we were hustling down the east coast trying to get out of the cold. Our goal was to be in Miami for Christmas as that is where the kids planned on meeting us.We had avoided a near disaster in the Erie Canal and again in the C and D canal.
Trinidad had been our goal for hurricane season and our haulout to complete our work list started back in Muskegon Michigan when it was time to go….. So here we are!
Peakes Boatyard became our home for the month of early September to early October. We had our list of things to do. the rudder needed new bearings and bushings so we dropped the rudder. through hulls needing checking for corrosion and we ended up replacing 3 of the 9. chain plates and rigging needed examination and re-bedding. varnish inside the cabin was re-done. wiring to lights up the mast re-done. refrigeration needed re-insulating and upgrading. Bottom painted, topsides cleaned, polished and waxed. propeller and shaft removed to replace the cutlass bearing. Oh the list was long and we worked hard. Nothing was hired out in typical Knape fashion. Not many action shots though.
But it was not all work and no play for us. We had a birds eye view of the water as we were placed at the waters edge for the entire month. we watched all sorts of ships enter the harbor. Much of the ship traffic was related to oil rigs, oil exploration etc. But the harbor mixes the yachts, travellers and workers all in one place.
Daily we had these lapwings come for a visit as well as these insects and bees and a few mosquitos as well. Wildlife in and around the boatyard.
Cocktail hour was never missed with time for socializing and relaxing. Everyone we knew was in the same phase, working, dirty and tired but motivated to complete the task. We are here with people from all over the world just like us. Sunset from the cockpit was scenic and often with a cooler breeze off the water. Showers and laundry facilities were so appreciated. It may seem strange to you landlubbers who take these things for granted but not us water dwellers.
Then we launched and she looked beautiful of course.
After launching we spent a week at the dock cleaning up, putting away and refilling water and fuel tanks. Peakes gives you 5 free days when you haul with them which is a wonderful freebie. The fuel price is a whopping $1 per gallon so we filled the tanks and jerry jugs as well. Water is plentiful and free and good tasting.
Then off to Scotland Bay as we promised ourselves so relaxation time. We hike up looking for the howler monkeys that “howled” so loud each morning and night but never could find them. They are so shy and live up in the canopy. We did see one on a hike near the boat yard but no pictures of them. The green parrots still fly over in pairs at dusk and dawn and make their raucous noises. The vultures still live in the trees cleaning up the dead and decaying stuff. Plastic and garbage still is strewn just about everywhere.
Now we are nearly ready to go on to Tobago about 60 miles to thel north and east. But the freezer decides to stop working. so John is working on that as i blog. Soon we will be heading out again. Lots more to do and see.
So you can see retirement is very hard work! We miss all our friends and family a lot. John’s dad is in the hospital with pneumonia and brother in law Bruce has just passed away after a long time struggling with heart failure. Enjoying life as we are able and remembering to be grateful for our life, our health and our loved ones! Love to all of our friends and family!!