Things did not go as planned yesterday. James is leaving for Canada today to see his Father who is gravely ill. Being on Ondine without the Captain isn’t terrifying. No, not at all. But he has to go and my sister in law, Lucy, her husband John and their Daughter, Kailey will be staying on with the kids and I in Dominica for a bit. We have been in Portsmouth for a while and we thought a change of scene while the Captain is away would be a good idea. So James was going to move us on his last day in Dominica. The plan was to get up, get fuel and water at the fuel dock, then sail to an anchorage in the main town of Roseau. When we got up it was bucketing down rain and the wind was howling. But we got ready and upped the anchor. When we got to the fuel dock the wind had changed direction and started blowing us on to the dock. (It’s a tricky dock as it’s really set up for cruises ships) We decided to abort with John already on the dock. When we started around to pick him up one of the engines snapped a belt. We where forced to abandoned John and quickly find a mooring. The first person we called on the VHS was, Charlie Love. Charlie is our yacht helper. A group of guys in Portsmouth have gotten together and formed a group that provides security and services for the yachts. They have brightly colored boats and nick names like Seabird, Spaghetti and Lawrence of Arabia. It can be a bit disconcerting when they speed out to meet you coming into Portsmouth. It feels like you are new fresh meat. But they just have a vested interested seeing you have a good experience in Portsmouth and want to get to you before the crack heads. They have a system of taking turns and only one of them actually approaches the boat. Charlie has been invaluable to us. He’s helped us with immigration, getting our laundry done, set up tours of the Island and taken us down the Indian River. When we where in trouble yesterday he got us on a mooring, picked up John and arranged for our lovely one-armed mechanic, Igna (who we have gotten to know very well!) to come and help us. As it turned we didn’t have the right belt and all the shops where shut yesterday. Igna got us a new belt this morning and we where able fill up with fuel and water, but we will have to stay here in Portsmouth while James is away. Maybe it’s all for the best, here we have Charlie Love looking out for us.
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