Now For Something Different....
January 31, 2011
Nassau to Sampson Cay – 2011
1/11/2011: Nassau to Alan's Cays – 30nm
1/12/2011: Alan's Cays to Emerald Rock (Wardwick Wells) – 31nm
1/15/2011: Emerald Rock to Sampson Cay – 17nm
1/25/2011: Staniel Cay to Big Major Spot – 1nm
1/26/2011: Big Major Spot to Cambridge Cay – 15nn
1/29/2011: Cambridge Cay to Sampson Cay – 13nm
We made landfall in my beloved Exumas at 2:00 PM on the 11th of January and dropped the hook just off Alan's Cays (actually 3 small Cays). I was home. The Exumas, their varied Cays, and their people make up (to me at least) one of the best places to cruise on this old earth.
The Exuma chain of Islands run like a string of conch pearls roughly North / South. With prevailing winds out of the East anchoring is simple – just snuggle up to the West side of a Cay and drop the hook. That leaves you with and nothing but the horizon between you and some of the most beautiful sunsets this old boy has ever seen. Every sunset and every sunrise is unique to the point it will take your breath away. While at Sampson we have seen 2 “green flashes” (yes they do exist – see photos), a double rainbow over “Gigi's Island” and more beautiful sunsets than you can imagine.
The people...Oh the people. Sampson Cay, Staniel Cay, Compass Cay, Black Point Settlement folk remind me of the “Old South.” You are welcomed like the prodigal son when they see you coming. Genuine smiles of kinship and, “I knew you come back Mon” or “I make chicken souse for you tomorrow for breakfast Mon.” I feel at home here as much as I do in North Carolina.
Then there is the peace of dawn over the Cays and what the morning light does to the clouds.... Which brings me to the “something different.” I decided
to take a shot a poetry. Like it or no here it is.
The sun clears the cay
and paints the new day
with brilliant reds, yellows,
and splashes of blue.
As clouds come ablaze with the
hues of morning gray-green
water stirs to life
with gifts of the sun.
The sun climbs the sky and
the waters of the banks shoulder
off their muted night cloak of gray.
Slowly at first a hint of green lights
the waters that yield to vivid transparent aqua.
The dark blue, emerald rimed,
waters of the deep shout,
“You are safe here..Safe Here!”
The yellow-green of the skinny
water bathes the sight. Navigable
only by skiff, offering conch,
shelling, and other hidden treasures.
The midnight black of the coral shows
her heads so clear. “Don't tread on me,”
she says but adds, “Life here, Life here.”
Clouds shield sun's light
and lie water's faithful colors
hiding waters true nature
from the sailor sight.
Stay the course but be aware.
Magenta, gold, and bluebonnet clouds,
Coffee.. reflective coffee, and another
Caribbean dawn greets the Soul.
We are off tomorrow to deliver our school books to the All Age School at Black Point Settlement (and have pizza and visit friends). I expect Gigi will “have to” get a “do” at Ida's Laundromat and BeautyParlor before she will let us leave. Until next time.
Fairwinds and Rum Drinks,
PS – Then there was this one party at Sampson Cay Club for “absent shipmate” Shirley & Mac....