Black Point to Pipe Cay

So busy we had to wait our turn for two washers

So busy we had to wait our turn for two washers

The protected harbor at Black Point was very full- more than we’d expected- most boats headed north, but some still moving south. The to-do list included, laundry, coconut bread, use wifi to move iPhone photos to the Photo Stream and hopefully Skype with Benj.

Any grocery items at the market would be a plus and I was happy to snag the last dozen eggs. Mr Adderley told us that the Bahamian government had just increased the import tax on eggs to 30%! Yikes. Egg prices throughout the islands are reasonable, often less than $3 for large, VL or jumbo eggs. We read a newspaper article the other day that shed some light on this tax increase and my take-away was that the government has egg on its face! Too little too late was the sentiment expressed. Local egg producers had already gone belly-up and crossed the road to rely on other means of a livelihood. Making imported eggs more expensive should have occurred 4-5 years ago, not now when the result will be less profit for the grocer, based on the allowed markup.

Several times we’ve noted how we’ve seen not one other Maine Cat, either a 30 or 41, this year. So what do we see as we approach the anchorage and head for the spot we want? Yep-a MC 41 named Snazzy Kitty, with very snazzy graphics on her bows. (sorry no photo). She is MC41 hull #3 (we are 21) and Larry and Melanie bought her last summer from the original owner. They are no strangers to Maine Cat; they own Moondoggy who’s in charter in Hope Town. Snazzy is also in charter so they are headed for Hope Town by March 5th. We had them over so they could see changes since #3 was built and see what we’d added or updated ourselves.

Tuesday afternoon we did another “depart at 2pm-ish” move, 13nm north to Pipe Cay. This is another favorite place and would place us 14nm south of Warderick Wells and within VHF calling distance to get on the list for a mooring Thursday and Friday nights. Moorings can be requested for the current or following day so Wednesday morning during the 9am Exuma Park announcements we got on the list.

Shortly after switching back to Channel 16 we heard a vessel hailing Traveling Soul. We’d been hoping to meet up with them as we both moved up and down the Exumas and last we knew they were in George Town. I called and learned they were headed to Nassau for some repairs but they altered their plans and said they’d meet us at Warderick when we arrived Thursday. Sweet!

The day was spent exploring both east and west sides of Pipe Cay. We found several pieces of what looked like wooden planks from a sunk and washed up boat. The piece Russ broke off one end would make a perfect replacement plaque for an Ortolan sign on Boo Boo Hill. Our other one did not fare well and we found it broken last season amid the pile of driftwood signs.

Many discarded conch shell piles dot  Pipe Cay's east side beach

Many discarded conch shell piles dot Pipe Cay’s east side beach

The fuel freighter, Tropic Breeze was anchored a short distance behind us waiting for a boat to come get its fuel for the generators that are used on the islands to generate power. Larger islands have a BEC power plant but the little guys are on their own. Before we left in the morning she’d moved on to her next delivery up near Halls and Little Halls Pond Cay.

Tropic Breeze as she's about to pass behind us

Tropic Breeze as she’s about to pass behind us

Shortly after we left we crossed paths with Tropic Breeze who had the right of way (being on our right side) but we since we were sailing (at a brisk 8kts) we felt sure she would take our stern. We would usually give way to a priority vessel, especially since if she had restricted maneuverability AND on our starboard side, we’d be the vessel expected to get out of the way- and who’d want to collide with a fuel tanker?

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