The winds picked up overnight and continued to blow from the NE at 20-25 knots all day long. We awoke at sunrise (today, closer to eight o’clock since we began daylight savings time). By 9:45, we had weighed anchor and resumed our northward trek. The Sea of Abaco was churned up by the brisk winds, so we tolerated a 3 1/2 hour bumpy, mostly into the wind, ride to Hope Town. The best news of the day is that my starboard engine ran at 2500 r.p.m. for 3 1/2 hours with no overheating. Problem solved!
We pulled into Hope Town Harbour hoping to pick up a mooring ball. There are quite a few balls in the harbor, belonging to a number of different businesses. Not a single one was available, however. So, after motoring around and in-between tightly packed boats for a few minutes, we decided to exit the harbor and anchor just outside. As we exited the harbor, we turned to the south and dropped our anchor in 6 feet of water. The area is a mix of sea grass (which generally offers unreliable holding) and sand. We found a small sandy spot into which we lowered our anchor. After putting out an 8:1 scope and backing down on the anchor for a moment or two at 2000 r.p.m. without dragging, we felt pretty secure. Just for a little more peace of mind, I slipped on my fins and mask and swam out to verify that it was buried securely. And, that it was. We’ll likely stay here for two or three days. We are well-protected from the considerable winds, which will be mainly from the east.
Just before 4 p.m., we took Dalí into town. We tied up at Captain Jacks, planning to have dinner there and use their wifi. But, they were closed on Sunday. The grocery store next door from which we thought we might buy a few things was also closed. After wandering around town for a few minutes looking for wifi, we returned to Captain Jacks to see if their’s was available… and it was (although not great quality)! We sat and did wifi for a while and then walked down the waterfront to Harbour’s Edge restaurant where we shared jerk chicken quesadillas and nachos. Mmmm! There was a young gentleman on guitar providing live music for our listening pleasure while we dined. Just before sunset, we returned to our dinghy and made the quick trip out of the harbor and onto Beatitude. I love that, with the time change, we can have dinner and get back to Beatitude before dark. When we returned, we watched a couple of lectures from The Teaching Company on the Holy Land (we finished lecture 20 of 36). It not only is quite interesting, but also excellent preparation for our trip to the Holy Land (by air, not boat) coming up next month. We can’t wait!