When I finally left I got a taxi ride to the airport, which took me through the inside of the island. As I said my memory is a little vague but that taxi journey sticks in my mind as being one of the best road-trips I’ve taken in my life. Why? I’m not sure. I think it was the stark contrast of a Caribbean blue sky, distant shimmering waters and the rich green vegetation of the banana plantations.
Blue Monkey was a tired old Beneteau 46 belonging to the charter company Moorings. It was our duty to deliver the boat to the Moorings base in Marigot Bay, St Lucia, in one piece. It wasn’t until we completed our task and got off Blue Monkey that the steering went, the autohelm was lost and the boat literally fell apart in front of our eyes.
When you’ve spent over three weeks at sea Antigua really is a piece of heaven on earth. We don’t need to tell you what it was like because it’s all that you imagine it to be: warm, idyllic, welcoming and simply stunning. With free-flowing rum and the fact it was approaching Christmas the vibe was fully switched on to ‘party’ mode. Tim, Dobby, Michel and myself rented a shack for a month on top of a hill overlooking Falmouth Harbour and quickly sussed the perfect recipie for rum-punch. Yachts came and went, providing the south of the island with crowds of party people who crammed the local joints like the Mad Mongoose.
Maybe it isn’t going to end. We’ve no wind and we’re doing minus one knot. The air is close and it is baking hot. Everyone is tired and I’ve got a headache. I managed to give myself rope burns to the hand and we’ve run out of gas. Our destination is only 80 miles away and we’ve just been bobbing aimlessly.
This introduction was written by my brother when the original FTB website was put together, preceding the Europe and Atlantic trip undertaken in 2003.
Tim helped communicate my adventures to family and friends by setting up a small site to contain these stories. This is the very original introduction that preceded the FTB web site.