We are anchored in Falmouth Harbor, Antigua and it’s clear we’ve arrived in time for a big event: the 25th Annual Antigua Classic Yacht Regatta. (Check out their website at www.antiguaclassics.com)
In addition to having the chance to see many incredibly beautiful boats, we have met up again with many of our cruising friends from our time in Grenada, and with friends from Maine – Phin and Joanna Sprague from Portland Yacht Services. A number of Maine boatyards sponsor a Sail Maine Party at this regatta, inviting the classics and all cruisers to visit Maine when they sail back to the states. We’ll help with the party on Sunday – and hopefully get a taste of Maine in the process.
On Monday we went for a hike/walk with Jackie and Chris from High Heeled. We hiked from Falmouth to English harbor, climbing up along a trail that led past the old outposts and down to the fort that overlooks English Harbor. Jackie is a walker not a hiker, and she was a bit surprised about the steep parts of the trail. She’s a good sport and was delighted to have scrambled (albeit slowly) safely down this hill.
The Agave is beginning to bloom. Here we are looking toward English Harbor.
Goats and guns at the fort.
On Wednesday, EW and I dinghied into the marina to walk the docks and ogle the boats. Many of the boats docked in that location were getting ready for the judging of the Concours d’Elegance on Thursday. Others were getting ready to participate in the single-handed race, also held on Thursday. The docks were busy with gawkers, dogs, kids, and folks with paint, polish, and tools. Also beer. And rum. We all have our priorities.
As EW and I were delighted to chat with Bob and Debbie, whom we had met in Grenada, I turned and called out, “Joanna! Honey – there goes Joanna!” Hugs all around. Back in 2010 it seemed as if we were never going to get out of the state. We left Great Island Boatyard on October 17, saying good-by to our friends there, and sailed to Jewell Island anchorage off of Portland. EW still had some repairs to undertake before we could leave and I had some stowing to do. The furnace was causing a problem and he knew he could get parts in Maine more easily than somewhere on the way, so we called Portland Yacht Services and asked if we could tie up to their dock for a few hours while we got the parts and go the furnace working. They graciously agreed, and we completed all tasks by 1630, and decided it would be the perfect night to head to the Cape Cod Canal. Joanna had heard we were on the dock and came down to wish us well. She’s the last friend we saw in Maine before leaving. It is great to spend time with them here.
Find out more about Portland Yacht Services, home of the Maine Boatbuilders’ Show, by visiting their site.
We are also delighted to meet up again with many of the cruising friends we played with in Grenada last summer. Bob and Deibbie of s/v Chimayo and Alice and Steve on s/v Ocean Star (at right) are two of the many boats of “Grenada Cruisers” here in Antigua.
Here are photos from the docks on the 18th and at sea on the 19th. Classic boats in Antigua.
Here are a couple of s/v Old Bob’s not-so-classic fender covers:
And my favorite of their covers: