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- Put da lime in da coconut
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 9 May 2012 12:42:19 -0400 (EDT)
The sun is out ! Sort of. A few clouds in the area, but looks like we
may be rain free for the remainder of the day. There is a nice breeze
to cool the temps. of upper 80's.  Weather reports are calling for more
rain possibly this weekend, and that may very well be the system that
dumped so much rain around Antigua.

Sign of the times here, Columbia Emeralds and the Rolex retailer, A. H.
Rise, have both closed their doors in Road Town. This comes on the
heels of Norwegian and Princess cruise lines discontinuing their
service into Tortola. Dont' know the  exact reasoning behind the cruise
lines discontinuation, but do know that the jewelry stores have been
especially hard hit with the cost of gold and a bit of a worldwide "
recession" .

Oh well, most of us islanders make our own jewelry out of anything we
can find, like sea glass, and shells. I use the feathers "shed " from
my beautiful love birds and made some pretty decent earrings. When I
showed them to a friend however, she politely told me that I needed to
"get a life " . Ha.

Mystery Mermaid
You can bet the BVI government knows exactly why they discontinued their visits. Cruise lines plan years ahead, so the travel agents can sell tickets with specific ports of call. Changing this on short notice, messes up a ton of printed promotional material and marketing already in place.
However, the government has to spell out how much they charge the cruise ships for visiting their islands.
 I am really surprised that news like this isn't all over the local newspapers but maybe somebody screwed up something some where...   It happens.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Awesome photo of Well Bay
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 9 May 2012 08:35:30 -0400 (EDT)
Well Bay, a little secluded, always calm, favorite swim spot on Tortola.  Well actually it's on Beef Island.   But you can get to Beef Island from Tortola by the Queen's bridge.
It used to be to cross the bridge you had to pay a little old man at the toll booth. He would sit in his little shack.  When you drove up, he had a coconut cup tied to a stick. He would pick up the stick, then aim the coconut cup towards your window.
If you didn't have exact change, then he would retrieve his coconut cup with your money, place the change inside, then aim it back at you. At the end of the day he was supposed to turn the money into the BVI government.
Now the hitch was, you only had to pay ONCE per day. After that you could cross the bridge for free. He didn't hand out any tickets or paperwork. This was back in the good old days before computers.
Now that we have computers, we have an excuse to tear down as many trees as possible to make mountains of paper so the computers can spit it out faster than you can sneeze.
Anyhow, I guess the government relied on his sheer honesty to make sure they got all their tolls.
Others say the toll man  retired with fabulous wealth. 
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Tuesday in the BVI
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 8 May 2012 09:47:12 -0400 (EDT)
It is still overcast and very calm this Tuesday morning. There are some
heavier clouds to the east of us so looks like we may get more rain.
There is a huge system to the south west of us creating torrential
rains and serious flooding for the islands of Guadeloupe, Martinique
and Antigua.  I truly hope this system  does not swagger up our way, as
we are already .

We have a visitor in the channel near Buck Island. A lovely humpback
whale has been sighted in the channel and also at Fat Hogs Bay where
some lucky staff from Sail Caribbean Divers got to snorkel with the
humpback. Jealous !!! May have to take the kayak out  later and see if
I can " eye spot " this lovely creature.

A friend of mine was  recently anchored at Leverick Bay next to a boat
of "good ole boys " from Oklahoma, who were having a good ole time. One
of the men went for a dip and upon climbing back on board accidentally
pulled off a very expensive grill from the back of the boat. Helplessly
he watched as the grill sank to the bottom depths about 20 ft. or so.
My friend seeing this asked if he could help out since he was a
certified diver and had some equipment on board. Thinking that the
replacement value  of the grill could be mighty costly , the man
offered my friend $ 200.00 if he would dive down and retrieve the
grill.  . When all was agreed and my friend  finally surfaced after
quite a struggle bringing up the big heavy grill,  the  good ole boy
just looked and said to him,  "are the 5 pork chops I was cooking still
in there "?

It's was a soaked Sunday afternoon here on Tortola when I heard this, so think I'll just hang around at the bar later and hope to pick up some more good sailing stories !

Signed Mystery Mermaid for
Dear Miss Mermaid who is off the chart somewhere...

- Dead things with wings
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 7 May 2012 16:43:18 -0400 (EDT)
Feeling a bit waterlogged here right now. It just continues to rain
intermittently, and when the sun does venture to show it gets STEAMY!
It's about 84 degrees now with no breeze whatsoever.  79% humidity and
that hasn't changed in days.

You should know that we are under some serious attack here on Tortola,
and it's not the British navy. We have been invaded by thousands of
"flying ant" thingies, and they are creating mild panic among boat and
home owners. Seems that the little buggers , upon alighting, shed their
wings and leave their little bodies squiggling around, and then those
little bodies just sort of disappear, which has everyone a little
freaked out as to just where  they go. All that remains are hundreds (
literally ) of fluorescent wings laying around to be swept up.  There
is much speculation as to what these insects are with the consensus
leaning towards termites that have been flooded out of their nests from
the rains. The debate continues as does the cleanup.
Hopefully have an answer on this soon.
Signed Mystery Mermaid
I am pretty sure that sounds like termites. Back in the day when I worked as a private Chef, I was preparing doing dinner  al fresco when the buggers showed up and died everywhere!  I had to call for emergency help to come clean up before the guests arrived home from the beach to see dead bugs all over the place.
Like many houses in the BVI, this extraordinary villa had no window screens. Typically the trade winds keep the bugs away, but when they don't... heaven help us all!
Signed Dear Miss Mermaid

- Squirrely weather er.....squally!!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 7 May 2012 11:14:48 -0300
Good morning,

After yesterdays total wash out today has started out being brighter and not so thick with clouds, however, we are having squirrely weather!  Nope no flying squirrels like up north but squally weather.  I'm sure that the folks sailing will get a nice rain shower off and on today.  This wave is still hanging around giving us precipitation.  That's good because I just checked my cistern level and it is rising ever so slowly.  It's at 3'7" of water so that is an increase of 4" since last week.  Very Nice!!  Many folks have been ordering water knowing that it will be hit and miss now for the season with getting substantial rain.  I'm pleased to have had a rainy weekend just for the fact that it gave me time to do chores, read and finish a book plus do some art work.

It is 73 degrees with light breezes at 7 mph out of the east to slightly north east.

Enjoy the day!

I'm going to try to dry out a bit...


The Mermaid Gardener
Inline image 1

- Super Duper Full Moon WOW
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 6 May 2012 20:06:21 -0400 (EDT)
Well yep, it's raining again this Sat. afternoon. Got washed out of the
tennis tournament this morning, but will venture back to the club to
see if the men will be able to get on . If not, we'll be  watching the 
Kentucky Derby and celebrating Cinco  de Mayo, with authentic Mexican 
food and dancing !!

Despite the rain showers it is so still, hot and humid. The kind of day
where you sweat just sitting still. Ugh.

Tomorrow is SUPER full moon night ! The moon will be closest to the
earth than ever and will be 14% bigger and 30% brighter. I might have
to wear my shades !!   There should be some rockin' good full moon
parties at Trellis Bay and at Bombas.  Question ? ! With the moon so
big and bright and close do I have to worry about any unnatural
gravitational pull . Am I going to levitate or anything ? Ha. Well
maybe at least after a rum punch or two !

Signed Mystery Mermaid
covering for Dear Miss Mermaid who sailed off the chart

- Rained out!!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 6 May 2012 16:04:53 -0300
Good afternoon,

Yikes today was and has been a total wash out.  Woke to very cloudy skies, absolutely no sunrise.  The day went down hill from there.  Rain, and more rain.    Could not see Buck or Beef island at one point the rain was coming down so hard.  I had plans to go to Brandywine for lunch but geeze the rain was really coming down.  We have rescheduled for tomorrow, the weather is expected to be partly cloudy but no substantial rain fall. Maybe a 20% chance of rain. 

My day has been filled with odds and ends.  Reading and painting on my art work.  The temperature is 77 degrees and with it being so damp out it is rather cool.  The seas have been flat all day, everyone is out motoring.  Not even motor sailing....just plain motoring.  I can see that the wind has shifted just a bit from earlier today and there are now ripples on Sir Frances Drake channel where as before it was dead calm.  I'm sure plenty of the sailors out got a good fresh water rain shower!!!  Cooper island is looking like it has quite a few boats in the anchorage.  Last night it looked like it was pretty full with sailboats having their masthead lights on.

No worries on having a wash out day since it fills our cisterns and waters all the island plants.  Some times it nice to just have to stay inside and take care of to do's!!

Cheers from a content being inside, 
Mermaid Gardener

- Virgins and Leewards have had Wet days
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sat, 5 May 2012 12:24:21 -0400 (EDT)
Both the Virgin Islands and the Leewards have had heavy rains, some lasting all day or night.  I had a dink totally full here in St. Martin and we had reports of several hard dinks sinking:.  That is one good think about the RIB... Rigid Inflatable Boat type I have... It just fills up and the air tubes keep it from totally sinking.  I did get up at 2:30 to pump it dry during a short break in the rains early Friday AM.  Most of Friday AM was dry but a few showers were very obvious North of me over Marigot, on the French side.  The Dutch side seem to be in a miss pattern as what I saw of rains were South of the beaches out over water.
Today is nice and sunny with no chance of rain until late tonight and we could have more than in inch over the next couple of days, so I've got my water trappment system up and running:-)
Reports from all the islands seem to indicate a major shortage of Mayonnaise this passed week.  Occurred last year both here and in the Virgin Islands.  The shortage is due to the practice of tossing a large table spoon of Mayonnaise off the Bow, Aft then Port and Starboard sides of ones boat.  This practice on this day is in following what I am told are the traditions of this holiday of Mexican origin... Sinka Da Mayo  :-X
Wayward in St. Martin / St Maarten

- Sunny Saturday??? Jury is out yet..
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sat, 5 May 2012 08:15:05 -0300
Good Sunny Morning,

This morning is starting out to be sunny with high thin clouds.  There are no lower deck clouds right now.  Seas are completely flat, the gods have sucked out all our wind this morning.  We have just a slight breeze, but ever so slight.  Today could be a hot one we are predicting 84 degrees but with no wind the heat index will be 90.  There is a 40% chance of rain this morning and they are predicting that we could get some rain this afternoon, about a 40% chance of it.  Tonight the rain potential goes up to 70%. it would be nice to continue to get some additional rain since we are still in the dry season. 

My bougainvillea around my driveway courtyard is in full bloom which is so pretty to drive up to.

Inline image 1

Three weeks ago when I left all of these pretty shrubs were looking like dried out sticks but now they have sprung back to life!

Yesterday ran down to Sunsail to check out how business has been and things are going still pretty strong for them.  I think it's a good sign that our fellow sailors are continuing to coming down to sail here and enjoy the beautiful islands here in the BVI.  If you have not been down now might be a great time to get some off season deals on sailing and lodging.  Come down and join us!!

Saturday cheers!
the Mermaid Gardener

- What a difference a day makes!
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 4 May 2012 23:15:13 -0400 (EDT)
A beautiful view looking north from the Beef Island bridge. This is a very popular spot for fly fisherman looking to reel in some bone fish off the flats near the rear of the photo.
It's a SUNNY Friday morning here on Tortola. The rain is gone and we
are back to normal with temps. in the upper 80's and a very still
little breeze. The seas are calm and it looks to be a gorgeous day.
The big decision to make today is what to do this weekend ? Oh yes,
there is never a dull moment here on island. Personally right now I am
self entertained . I am zapping mosquitos  with a battery operated
"electric tennis racquet " . There is nothing more satisfying than
hearing that  zzzap as  another one bites the dust. Hey they're biting
after all. Swinging that raquet around gives me a good workout  and a
real warmup for tomorrows continuing Vievue Cliquot tennis tournament
at the sports club.
There are many Cinco de Mayo parties tomorrow at most of the restaurants
and venues. Some of these parties overlap the Kentucky Derby, so my
is can you make a mint julep with tequila ? Even better ? A mint julep
in one
hand and a margarita in the other ? Ouch. Just some of life's tough
here on Tortola.

Signed the Mystery Mermaid covering while Dear Miss Mermaid has gone on walkabout...
And while Dear Miss Mermaid was on walkabout, this note in a bottle washed ashore in a Guinness Stoutt...
Hi ......
Would just like to say how interesting your posts are they always make me chuckle.Have visited a few of your islands Barbados/St Lucia/Antigua/St Martean.Nothing but fabulous memories,love the people/relaxed lifestyle with NO ONE  rushing about we have also experienced some of your unstable weather!!!!
I read your websites everyday sometimes more during Hurricane season as some 5-7 days later we end up with the rain and wind here in London England.
Just like to say keep up the good work and keep posting..take care..stay safe this season. 
Steve L.  (London England)
Thank you Steve!  You are an angel! 

- Friday all calm at the moment
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 4 May 2012 07:58:41 -0300
Good Morning,

All is calm here in Tortola with sunrise peeking over the horizon.  Last night winds were up but they have quieted down now and the seas are pretty flat overlooking Sir Frances Drake Channel.  We are expecting the a nicer morning but then clouds will increase going into the afternoon with a possibility of thunderstorms.  We have a low pressure trough that is overhead right now and moving through the region.  Looks like Saturday will again be unstable with rain as a possibility.  High today will be around 84 and currently we are 75 degrees.  Time to hit the beach this morning and then read a book in the afternoon while it rains. 

the Mermaid Gardener

Inline image 1

My neighbors almond tree starting to bloom!

- back from walk about
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 3 May 2012 22:29:48 -0300
Good Evening,

Arrived on Liat this afternoon from St. Maarten.  Weather in St. Maarten is a replica of what we are having here in Tortola.  Gloomy dark stormy weather.  This morning had a not so bad dingy ride over to Turtle Pier for breakfast,en route we dodged the rain and I was not too wet except having dingy butt.  Planned on changing at the airport out of my wet clothes, and that worked out really well.  Dry clothes feel so good!  Had a fantastic time in St. Maarten with wonderful memories that I'll always carry with me.

After arriving in the BVI picked up my car and then off to Riteway for a little provisioning.  Picked up a few odd and ends.  Feels wierd to not have to convert Euro's to dollars.  The weather started to deteriorate as I left Riteway and by the time I got back to my house the winds were picking up and the cloud cover was very thick.  Ended up that we had a really hard rain shower and the skies looked quite dark.  Snapped this picture before it moved in.  At one point there was no visibility at all.  We had a pretty good hard rain fall for about an hour or so, and then crack boom bang lighting struck near my house.  Power went out immediately.  Called in to BVI electricity and they said that they out send out a crew to fix the problem.  It took them the rest of the afternoon to get the power back on.  I'm a happy mermaid knowing that the power is back on and I could make myself some dinner.  The winds have picked up now feels like east south east winds, this weather is suppose to linger for another 4 days or so, but will check the weather guessers in the morning. 

Inline image 1

Cheers on this murky night!

The Mermaid Gardener

- 230 PM Ominous dark clouds
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 3 May 2012 14:57:43 -0400 (EDT)
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Stormy day looking out at Buck Island
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 3 May 2012 14:30:42 -0400 (EDT)
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Thursday
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 3 May 2012 14:02:33 -0400 (EDT)
Mystery Marvelous Mermaid says:
Good soggy morning from rain soaked Tortola. It was spot on with the
rain forecast for yesterday and today. We had a few good soaks
yesterday afternoon with heavy dark clouds hovering and some serious
thunder in the distance. Pretty much the same upon awakening this
morning. The BVI dister management posted a note about monitoring a 
"surface high pressure and trough "  Translation ? Wear your wellies
and carry  an umbrella.

As we approach hurricane season here in the BVI the BVIDM has  issued
what they claim
will be a relativity "tame" summer with 12 named storms and out of the
12 , 3 to be major hurricanes with winds over 110.  Let the guessing
game begin. It seems that when the experts predict a mild hurricane
season we get bombarded, and when they predict an active season we get
nada. Not that we're complaining, because it's always good to be
prepared. Shopping list. Canned goods, rum, water, rum, batteries, rum
, flashlights, rum , candles, hiccup, more rum.
Cheers from Tortola.
Oh the Soggy Dollar Bars webcam is back up and running so if you want
to see how soggy we are go to their site.
AND DON'T FORGET THE RUM!  says Dear Miss Mermaid!
That tree on the left looks like a dancer!  What a cut up!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Windsday in the islands
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 2 May 2012 11:00:35 -0400 (EDT)
Good morning ! My how quickly weather can change here on the islands.
One day sunny and hot , the next, blustery, cloudy and a little nip in
the air. I guess we can have a Caribbean "nip" like a New England or
Midwestern "nip" .  All that's missing is the fireplace. Seriously
though it is about  75 degrees ( yes that is chilly ) with 78 %
humidity and winds are out of the southeast at 15 mph. Looks like
another on / off rain day. 
I do hope it clears by late today as we had
planned on taking our European guests to the Bananakeet restaurant for
their fabulous view and SUNSET ! Probably one of the best views on
island. After we are venturing on to the Sugar Mill  in Little Apple
Bay , for one of their fabulous dinners. Sugar Mill was rated as one of
the 12 most romantic restaurants in the world by Conde Nast Concierge. 
Ah yes , a little romance tonight  will do a soul good !
Cheers from Tortola.


- Peter Island
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 1 May 2012 12:20:23 -0400 (EDT)
Come on down, the weather is gorgeous, the waters are crystal clear!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Salty Facials
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 30 Apr 2012 17:45:02 -0400 (EDT)
From our Marvelous Mystery Mermaid while Dear Miss Mermaid is on walkabout.
It's raining, it's pouring, the east winds are blowing at about 25
knots. Seas are a bit up and there is a small craft advisory issued. We
had pretty much the same weather yesterday  with imtermittent rain,
wind and big seas, but were determined to keep our promise to take
friends visiting from Europe out to the Willy T.  Did you know that
FEAR can make you seasick ? Yep it got me .  You know what cures fear
and seasickness?  A couple of the Willy T's painkillers !  We had a
delightful lunch there, with me being an aficionado of their honey
stung chicken ! My friend  really enjoyed the roti he ordered which was
seriously about the size of a refrigerator.  I think the boat trip back
was uneventful ?! I just know that with such a stiff salty wind in our
face we got the best facial / exfoliation ever. You know that would
cost big bucks in a spa !
Ah yes, those Caribbean Sea salt encrusted facials... LOL!

Warm and SALTY Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Binga Banga Boom!
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 29 Apr 2012 16:06:01 -0400 (EDT)
We woke to a nice rain shower this morning, and are still under partly
cloudy skies and  cooler temperatures. Phew. Nice stiff breeze too ,
out of the northeast at 15 mph.

At about 1 in the morning I heard a deep throttled  boom, roar kind of
noise,and thought, oh those darn kids with the  bass woofers in their
cars. Drives me crazy .  Then the ground shook a little. Earthquake !
Not a big one but a very loud one. I guess we are okay with having
lots of little rattles than one BIG one.

The government had a tsunami practice drill a couple of weeks ago, and
all government offices in road town were "evacuated" after the sirens
were initiated. Funny thing is that no one on the east or west side of
the island heard any sirens at all. From my " office " here on Tortola
, I have a pretty good view of the channel , so if it starts to part
like the Red Sea, or does anything else peculiar, I am out of here and
straight up the hill in back. I believe back in the early 1900's , Road
Town was struck by a tsunami , and partially destroyed.

- Windy straight out of the east!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2012 20:38:13 -0300
Good morning,

We are preparing for extremely gusty high winds for the next 2-3 days here in St Maarten.  Have checked the Tortola weather and this weather looks to be across the region.  Rain predictions have started to diminish, but not the winds. 

Winds ranging from 19-23 mph are being forecasted for Tortola as well as here.  Time for those of you anchored to reasses and make any changes in letting out anchor chain.  This morning we decided to find a new place for the sailboat knowing that these high steady winds are going to be coming.  Pulled up anchor at 5:30 am and moved closer to Margot.  We were finding that we were slipping just a bit where we were.  The bottom here in the lagoon is very mucky and getting a good hold In these winds is important.  After trying one place we decided to adjust a bit away from a troller that was too close to us when we swung.  We are now letting her settle after powering her back and stretching the chain out a bit.  so this morning was a bit of learning how to anchor 101 class for me.  Previously I had very little anchoring experience.  In the BVI I would normally get a ball and not deal with anchoring however, not all beautiful places have mooring balls available so it's anchoring 101.

We have had many sailboats from Tortola come into St. Maarten over the past week, many getting repairs, many just coming in while transiting down island.

Cheers from this anchoring student,
The mermaid gardener

- A Day For A SaltWater Soak
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 27 Apr 2012 09:07:23 -0400 (EDT)
From our Marvelous Mystery Mermaid:
Good morning from lovely sunny Tortola. Looks like  it's going to be
another hot one as we are already at 83 degrees at 8:30 am. Humidity
also up at 73 % and winds are steady from the east at 12 mph. The water
temperature is just perfect to cool off in, not like in the heat of the
summer when the water is more bathtub temperature and not much for
cooling. Have to take an injured cat to the vet this morning and  after
think I'll treat myself to a nice relaxing swim / salt water soak.
I truly don't look forward going to the vet here on island as the
choices are limited. There is a good vet way down at the very west end
of the island past the ferry dock ( if you can believe that ) , but as
good as she is she is only available Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. She
sails over from St. John on those days,  and
Thursdays  are typically surgery only days.  The other option is a
local fellow in Roadtown. He is also fairly good but my understanding
is that he really is trained more for large animals and somewhat hard
to track down. This could be a long day. I hate it when animals are
hurt and in quick need of help because you are going to suffer as much
as they are while waiting treatment.
Think I'll have a stiff rum drink along with my soak in the sea.

Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- It's Beachin Hot
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 25 Apr 2012 14:26:05 -0400 (EDT)
We're havin ' a heat wave . It is hot, hot, hot !! Temperature is 88
degrees and with 70 %  humidity feels like 95 degrees. Winds are still
put of the east at 10 mph.

Here is some REALLY juicy gossip !  Overheard yesterday at the Moorings
swimming pool. Two rather loud men from the states were discussing
looking at and most likely purchasing property on Tortola that very
afternoon. Why, you ask ? Because they plan on being here for a very
long time. Why , you ask again?  BECAUSE , they are airport runway
expansion ENGINEERS !!!  Hmmm.  Really  ? So much for a supposed "
PROJECTED " runway. Sounds like it is a done deal.

Yours truly,
Marvelous Mystery Mermaid
Funny...  same thing happened when the cruise ship dock went up. It was a "proposal".  Seems everyone voted NO and it was going to be a dead issue, then bang-bang-bang, up the dock went in lightning speed.
Life in paradise is one adventure after the next. 
What a great day to be at the beach!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Caribbean hot stuff!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2012 12:51:41 -0300
Good afternoon,
Still in St Martin is hot, a bit windy, In the BVI it's 90 degrees with winds out of the south at 5 mph. 
So much abouth the same.  Hot with light tradewinds.  One the interesting things is that every morning down here in St Maarten there is this wonderful guy who transmits on the VHF radio the weather, announcements, buy and sell, swap, and arrivals and departures.  There are many folks transiting between here and Tortola, ad well as going further down island.  There is also a seminar this week at lagoonies bar on making a crossing....Atlantic ......there will be probably good conversation about the do's and dont's of making a crossing.

I'm having a good time, last week we went
 to St Bart's.  So pretty and quaint!  More later on that excursion  !Looks like no substantial rain will be falling here or in the BVI.

I'll keep you posted!
Cheers the mermaid gardener

  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 23 Apr 2012 19:52:30 -0400 (EDT)
It's a 3 H  letter day. HOT , HUMID,  and HAZY ! Yep that darn haze is
back again , and it's not the haze from last nights margaritas. My nose
is running  and my breathing is at half capacity, so I'm guessing it's
From our Marvelous Mystery Mermaid:
Saharan dust again. You've got to believe it's bad when you can barely
see the outer islands like Cooper or Peter etc.
Presently temp is at 84, humidity 74%, and the winds out of the east at
10 mph.  Wish we would get winds out of the northwest that would blow
this dust back to the Sahara !
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Zippity doo day
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sat, 21 Apr 2012 15:10:21 -0400 (EDT)
From our Marvelous Mystery Mermaid:
Greetings this afternoon from Tortola. We are under partly cloudy skies
( thank goodness) with a temp reading slightly higher now at 86.
Humidity is 66% and we  had a few brief showers pass through. 
Winds are from the east at 13 mph and looking east also it is mighty
cloudy so I'm guessing we'll see some more rain. That ought to help
cool off the sailors in the Virgin Queen Pizza pursuit race taking
place right now.

So zippity doo dah, looks like we may be getting a zip line  at Cane
Garden Bay. A meeting and proposal was held the other night in regard,
and their was little dissension. The proposed ride will be 1,300 feet
long and stretch from the top of Cane Garden Bay, down to the beach.
Speeds may be up to 62 mph. Because the ride will travel out over open
water, there is concern of the masts on sailing boats , so the thought
is to move the mooring balls further out.. Um , yea I don't think that
would feel to good to smack into  someone's mast  at 62 mph and fall
down onto the deck. Don't imagine the owner would be too pleased either
to have some crumpled up bodies laying around  his boat.
And that's the way it is here.

From Dear Miss Mermaid:
I so wish the government of the BVI would concentrate more on beauty and boats than catering to the cruise ship crowd. But they never asked me, so cruise ship crowd it is.
Nothing wrong with the cruise ships, just that the fragile BVI was once known as a beautiful place for boaters and villa visitors to enjoy, but now the government is going all out for mass tourism, concentrating on quantity rather than quality.  If they had done the math first...  but we know government can't do math. They spent well over a million dollars on their very first  traffic light. How can one traffic light cost a million dollars?
Moving the mooring balls out further means they will be closer to the reefs.  Other boats may come in and try to anchor, not realizing the zip line interferes. But oh well.  Sounds like a lot  less boats will be able to anchor or moor at Cane Garden Bay.
What we need is a zip line to traverse Road Town!   Sure would be faster than crawling through traffic.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Can You Cheat At Tennis?
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2012 15:02:13 -0400 (EDT)
From our Marvelous Mystery Mermaid
What a weekend we have going on here on Tortola. There is never a lack
of things to do if you want to get your bum out of that beach chair
you've been sitting in and get active !

This Saturday there is  the Virgin Queen Pizza pursuit race . Would I
run after pizza that is in front of me like a carrot on a stick ? You
bet, but this happens to be a " serious " SAILING " race , beginning
and ending at Nanny Cay. Phew , thought I had to RUN after pizza.
There is a one day tennis tournament Saturday at the Tortola Sports
club , sponsored by Vieuve Cliquot. Guess what the men's and women's
winners receive ? Yep , a bottle of the bubbly  !!!!  I so want to win
. Can you cheat at tennis ?

Sunday you can got to the Hibiscus show and tell at the Administration
building from 1-5. Best blooms receive a ribbon. We have an unusual ?
white hibiscus plant with gorgeous double white blooms and deep red
"throats" . Hmmm, should we enter ?

All in all looks like another great weekend here. Presently it is
sunny, 82 degrees, 62 % humidity and winds are ESE at about 10 mph. 
Thanks to the Marvelous Mystery Mermaid who is covering for Dear Miss Mermaid who is on walkabout...
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- It just doesn't get any better than now
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 20 Apr 2012 11:53:04 -0400 (EDT)
From Our Mystery Mermaid on Tortola:
It just doesn't get any better than now. The weather is fabulous. Temps
in the low 80's, nice breeze from the east and ideal sailing
conditions. As lovely as it is here, the high season is beginning to
wind down a tad  as there are fewer and fewer boats to be seen out
enjoying these lovely days.

There was a reported sighting of a pod of Dolphins swimming among the
moorings at Cooper Island and a whale and her calf sighted in the
channel and also near Anegada.

We are also getting fresh Caribbean lobster now at all our favorite
joints. So I being a lobster lover , have had lobster every which way.
Broiled half lobster with butter, lobster thermidor, lobster bisque,
lobster salad,, you name it , the chefs here on island know how to
serve it !!  Bring it on !!! I know all the secrets of eating a lobster
including sucking out the tiny, tiny little antennae. Delectable!

From Dear Miss Mermaid who is on walkabout:
YUMMY!  Oh my gadda, I love that Anegada lobsta' 

- Whisked away with the NE winds!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2012 14:57:55 -0300
Good afternoon,

Had a wonderful opportunity to talk a walk about, er a sailabout, er a Liat walk about.  Could not pass up chance to spend time in St Maarten.  Have seen several other sailors from the BVI....not sure if wayward is among them.  I'll keep my eyes open for that barnacle sailor.  Arrived last week to really mild trade winds but wow Saturday night right after dinner on the boat, the wind began to twitch the witch ?..just like the wizard of oz...we had whipping winds from the north east at 32 knots!  That night the gps anchor drag alarm was going off all night. Ever so slightly we would move backward.  At one point we had to start up the engine and let out more chain, we had a total of 200 feet of chain out.  Then we grapped something on the ocean floor and held fast.  Our watches were every 4 hours checking out the anchor alarm.  All the boats around us dragged as well. Some of those that were open to the sea in Marigot went up on the rocks!  The French coast guard came out to assist and helped those in distress.  Sunday and Monday were days on board watching for any dragging, and the winds continues to pummult us.  Tuesday we chose to move the boat to a new home.  That being done, our sailboat home has found a new neighborhood.  Life is good now, winds light during the day, at night almost dead calm.  Winds are coolish but it feels sooooo good!  i'll try to post when I can if wifi is available, or my frosty beach drink is all finish!

Cheers from St. Maarten!
The mermaid gardener

- Paving paradise?
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 17 Apr 2012 17:33:18 -0400 (EDT)
Our wonderful guest mystery mermaid has sent us more news!
Found on the seashore, washed up  in a Heineken Bottle:
We had quite a "cold "front move in the last few days which has brought
big gusts of wind , some rain , and morning and evening temps. in the
70's. You know that's darn COLD here, and we were all scrambling to
find our cold weather gear, long  sleeve shirts, sweaters etc. As a
matter of fact we were remarking that we were cooler than most of New
England ! Went for a rather chilly  swim yesterday and was so looking
forward to a nice hot shower after, but as Murphy's law would have it
on one of the coolest days, the hot water heater went kaput. So took a
really cold shower, after a really cold swim on a really cold night ! 
I read somewhere that taking frequent cold showers can increase your
longevity, so I'm guessing I just added a few more years to my life.
The airport expansion plans continue to be THE hot topic on the island
. Of the 6 or so proposed runway expansions , one would literally close
off the entrance into Trellis Bay. You can imagine the uproar over at
Trellis among boaters, shop owners and etc. And  what would become of
Trellis Bay itself ?

Oh my gosh, would be a shame for everyone to lose such a delightful place.  Dear Miss Mermaid spent dozens of nights anchored at Trellis Bay with charter guests plus was known to traverse the area by land numerous  of times.  A true piece of paradise would be lost indeed.
So ironic, pave paradise, put up a parking lot...
Look at the larger image of Trellis Bay which can be found at

- Local Info
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 17 Apr 2012 13:36:08 -0400 (EDT)
Weather: Mostly Cloudy
Temperature: 81°F (27°C)
Humidity: 62 %
Wind Speed: N 17 MPH
Barometer: 30.03 in
Dewpoint: 66°F (19°C)
Heat Index: 83°F (28°C)
Visibility: 10.00 mi.
Expect a mixture of sunshine and a few clouds across the local islands through this afternoon. a couple of passing showers are possible ... but most of the time it will remain dry.
My crystal ball has predicted liquid sunshine  today. 
Come on down to the beautiful Virgin Islands.   Use these wonderful guide books to plan your dreams.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Wonderful Monday
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 16 Apr 2012 14:37:58 -0400 (EDT)
Hiccup!  Was having way too much on my birthday to remember the weather. me bad!   
In spite of the hairy weather we've had lately, it's now picture perfect for a postcard. Y'all come on down!
Found washed up on shore in a bottle:
April 12
Good morning to you and a belated Happy Birthday. !!
Woke up to a very blustery , rainy , cool day. Winds are strong from
the southeast, seas very choppy.
I can hear the big ferries with their heavy engines, ploughing their
way up the channel to Virgin Gordon and I think of all the islanders
who have to make their way to work each day via ferry and especially in
wicked weather.
It's not all fun and games here on Tortola, some of us have to really
work HARD, and that was the case yesterday when we were in the enviable
position of having to convoy four luxury yachts up to the Bitter End
Yacht Club for a boat show and sale. I know , it 's a damned dirty job,
but SOMEONE had to do it.
I was on board a beautifully appointed Hylas 54.  If I had won that
darn mega millions lottery last week, I may just have indulged in this
beauty, but alas, back to my day job., which cme to think of it , ain't
so bad.
April 11
The weather is beautiful ! Around 80 degrees with light winds. All the
scuttle butt on the island is around the proposed airport expansion.
Much on that later. Other scuttle butt is the proposed zip line a
company wants to put in at Cane Garden Bay to attract the cruise crowd.
Oh boy.
Since we are having a dinghy theft outbreak while the "kids " are on
spring break we are reminding everyone to PLEASE lock  up their dinghy
at night !!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Squally weather this morning!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 12 Apr 2012 09:57:04 -0300
Good Morning,

Earlier we had quite the squall come through, it was interesting since it came out of the south west.  Dark clouds surrounded the island and the wind whipped up.  One of my tall potted plants fell, it rarely does that but with the wind out of the south it toppled over.  Now I have a mess with dirt and debris all over my deck that I need to let dry and sweep up.  The rain came down hard for about 5 minutes and then it was all over. 

Now we have light winds.... still out of the south west, the skies still look murky but the thrashers are chirping and life is good.  The outlook is for scattered clouds, high of 86 degrees, right now they say it's 75 degrees and that feels about right.  There is a 40% chance of rain today which from my point of view looking out over Sir Francis Drake Channel look like they may be right.  The clouds on the horizon do look more disturbed then they have been.  Good for the vegetation and great for the cisterns.

Cheers for today!
the Mermaid Gardener

- Anegada Flamingos
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2012 09:49:29 -0400 (EDT)
Another fantastic day in paradise.   Happy Birthday to the 411 club which includes yours truly, Dear Miss Mermaid! 
Speaking of Flamingos on ohmygadda it's Anegada...  the BVI has used them as a subject many times on their postage stamps.
Either they have very long legs or this is very shallow water or they know where the hidden rocks are...
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Seeing PINK!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Wed, 11 Apr 2012 08:44:48 -0300
Good Morning,

I was seeing pink yesterday. that elusive pink bird made a showing yesterday at the salt pond on Beef Island.  I saw them heading over to the Long Bay beach, Beef Island.

There they were 3 or 4 pink long legged flamingo's!  They are extremely elusive and even though we have a flock of them over in Anegada, they too are hard to find and see on a regular basis.  I was tickled pick to see them!  It made my afternoon! 

Today looks like we are in the 50% chance of rain today with the temperature at 80 degrees,  winds are 10 mph out of the east south east.  Another great day for sailing the trade winds around the BVI

Cheers from this just pinky Mermaid Gardener

- Hoppy Easter Tuesday
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2012 13:52:11 -0400 (EDT)
Hoppy Easter Tuesday!  Gorgeous weather, 85F degrees, scattered showers, great weather for sailing or beaching it.
Old Sea Tails...  This truly happened:
A friend of mine stayed aboard his boat at anchor, during a hurricane years 
ago in the USVI.  His boat broke loose (it was later found bashed on rocky 
cliffs) and he ended up making a mad swim for shore during the height of the 
storm.  He managed to arrive on the beach of a large posh resort.  As he 
fought his way across the beach and up to the resort, he realized his clothes 
had been ripped from his body by the powerful storm and he was only wearing 
one flipper and nothing else, when he arrived. 
Can you imagine banging on the door of strangers in a posh hotel with nothing but one swim fin to cover your entire naked body?  Sounds like a very bad dream.  But it was true! 

- Tuesday winds are up!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Tue, 10 Apr 2012 09:35:25 -0300
Tuesday morning............

Temperature is 81 degrees and we will be going up to 86 degrees.  Winds have picked up they are 14 mph out of the north.  That will be great for those who are wanting to head south down island.  Looks like Sir Francis Drake is picking up in wave height as well.    Not many sailboats out this morning.  Over the weekend it was wonderful to see all the sailboats out.  I have to admit though that I was getting annoyed with all the go fast boats that were buzzing around at all times of the night.  But they too were just having fun probably over at Virgin Gorda over the Easter holiday. 

Chance of rain is 20% which isn't very much of a chance, we need more rain to fill the cisterns.  I've heard from my construction guy that everyone is buying water on the island.  Time to conserve water every time you turn on the faucet, just like on a sailboat!!

Got to run to do my artsy thing!

the Mermaid Gardener

- Easter Monday where's that Rabbit?
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 9 Apr 2012 12:34:47 -0300
Good Easter Monday Morning,

This is the last day of our 4 day holiday....Easter Monday.  Pretty much everything is closed except the grocery stores and gas stations.  The beaches are generally filled with families enjoying the sun and water while BBQing on the beach.  Yesterday, Easter, was a stellar day.  I was at the beach myself with a couple of girl friends.  We spent a quiet afternoon chatting, enjoying appetizers, and there were just a few folks on the beach so it was quite peaceful. 

Today's weather outlook looks like this....nice trade winds, temperature 84 degrees, give or take, puffy Caribbean clouds, a tropical shower every now and then, just a perfect Easter Monday here in the BVI.  The sailboats are out in force along with many folks from San Juan how boat down here for the weekend. 

the Mermaid Gardener
Inline image 2

- Hoppy Easter
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 8 Apr 2012 07:02:39 -0400 (EDT)
Another glorious day in paradise. Come on down, the weather is perfect.

Easter Bunny Wisdom

Don't Put all your eggs in one basket.

You can earn a lot of respect when you hop to it.

It pays to be all ears.

Hop softly and carry a big carrot.

Be flexible, people and Easter eggs come in all colors.

There's no such thing as too much chocolate.

An Easter bonnet can tame wild hare.

It's good to feel warm and fuzzy.

Smiles can multiply like rabbits

Anonymous good deeds are delightful.

It's OK to come out of your shell and show your true colors.

Keep your paws off the little chicks.

The grass is greener in someone else's basket.

We all have a  bad hare day now and then.

Some body parts are just floppy.

All work and no play can make you a basket case.

A fluffy round tail is a cute asset. 

Don't count your chickens before they hatch.

Bunny Tail...

One Easter while living aboard my sailboat in the Virgin Islands, I was anchored in a harbor that had a lot of folks living aboard full-time so I knew most all of them.  While I normally was gone for all the holidays, working on large yachts, this year I was home for a few days or weeks, I forget which, as my schedule was always terribly erratic. 

My mother was alive but living far away. When I came home to pick up my mail which had been accumulating in my absence, there was a box from my mother for Easter and my birthday, which were the same day or close to it that year. When I opened the box, it had tiny wrapped gifts and candy which were carefully cushioned  with fluffy green Easter basket grass. I cried, because I missed her so much and this box of surprises was an extremely thoughtful gesture. 

While ashore, I was feeling foolish and whimsical when I saw a store had these tiny little baskets on sale super cheap. 

They were only big enough to hold one or two eggs. 

For some crazy reason, I bought a bunch of baskets and eggs, then went home to my boat to boil and dye the eggs. 

I used some of  the Easter grass my mother had sent me, to fill each little basket.  Then I put a brightly colored egg in the basket, two if it was for a couple. 

About an hour before sunrise, I quietly climbed into my little dinghy, loading it up with my miniature Easter Baskets. I didn't start the engine, instead using my oars, to propel myself around the harbor as I gingerly set a tiny basket in the cockpit of my various neighbors who were soundly sleeping (all except one boat where the couple was engaged in noisy wrestling or something, but they were making so much noise, they never heard me paddle up to the side of their boat.)

When all was done, I silently rowed back to my boat, going back to bed. 

The boaters were famous for going ashore to a certain bar and restaurant for coffee (or rum) in the mornings. They all sat at what we called "table one" because it was reserved for the boaters who came and went all day, sharing the big round table with others, while they ate or drank. I made many new friends at that table. 

So the next morning, I happened to pass by table one around mid-morning. It sat in a garden, which bordered a public park, so you could cruise by the park and see who was currently sitting at table one. I pulled up a chair after self-serving my coffee, which was customary, as the boaters often self-served so the busy waitress could keep up with the tourist crowds at the other tables. 

In the center of the table, was one of my Easter baskets with an egg in it, brought in by a boater who didn't eat eggs. The bright pink egg against the green grass looked rather festive and had become the impromptu centerpiece along with the salt, pepper, ketchup and hot sauce.  

The conversation was enthusiastically centered around the anonymous Easter Bunny that left these curious gifts in the cockpits of the boaters. Someone asked me if I was the Easter Bunny.  I kept a straight face, claiming to have received my own Easter basket and openly pondered with them, who could have done this strange deed. 

As far as I know, no one ever found out it was me, but it was great fun listening to folks tell about how surprised  they were to find a little Easter basket, in their boat.


- Good Friday Holiday
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 6 Apr 2012 10:17:22 -0300
Good Morning,

After a week of no wifi expander in my life, hence, no computer unless I traveled to a place that had wifi, I'm back up and running.  I'm no computer guru and frankly after getting my new wifi range expander I tried once to install it and became completely frustrated.  Set the thing aside and slept on it.  Not literally but I tried to put it out of my mind. 

Without my wifi expander I'm not connected.  That was a weird feeling...no computer, no skype, no jango for music......tried again to install it yesterday morning and wow success!

All is well now and I just have to remember that living on a beautiful tropical island has it's challenges.  It's not like we have a Best Buy or other electronics store that I can go and talk to some really smart young adult who can talk computer circles around me in five minutes but I can get the right answers if I keep asking the right questions. 

We do have one place here on the island that is good for electronics but it reminds me of a "Mayberry" type of computer store, quaint, friendly and out of wifi expanders.  All finish as they say here.  Thank goodness for Fed Ex!  Got my new Wifi expander and she's up and running.  I gave myself a gold star yesterday in fact felt so good I took a close friend of mine out for dinner down at Trellis Bay.

It was great met up with mutual friends, chatted, laughed, ate good beach food, and watched a domino game in action.  This game the players were quite aggressive with the tiles.  They would slap them down, as if to say....here take this one.....I guess the action of slapping down the domino was part of the intimidation towards the other players.  Not quite sure who won the games overall but it was a loud domino game. 

Today it is starting out to be a party cloudy day, some haze.  Winds are light but picking up.  The seas have been flat for 4 days and so it's nice to have a bit of a breeze.  Cooper island last night was full and there are still quite a few sailboats out catchin the breeze.

Good Friday "today" is a holiday here as well as Easter Monday.  I have to run into the grocery story and pick up some goodies for Easter.  Don't have plans yet but you never know what fun things will come your way, so I keep an open mind and know that I'll have a great time what ever I may be doing.

Happy Good Friday!

the Mermaid Gardener

- Yee Haw!
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 5 Apr 2012 13:39:12 -0400 (EDT)
Cough, cough!  The Sahara Dust has made an early appearance.  Could that mean less or more hurricanes?  See African Dust Storms Stifle Hurricanes, Study Suggests for interesting info.
2012 Hurricane predictions are out. I am going to consult my crystal ball though. However, the good news is the forecasters have predicted fewer hurricanes this year. (Fewer than what?)
They forecast 10 named storms in the Atlantic Basin, of which only four will become hurricanes and two will become major hurricanes. A major hurricane is a category 3, 4 or 5 storm.
That compares to an average of 12 named storms, 6.5 hurricanes and three major hurricanes a year for the period of 1981-2010.
Before you get your knickers in a knot...  hurricane season does not officially start until JUNE 1, 2012 and we are barely into April now.
Visiting the beautiful British Virgin Islands?
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Haze is back
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 2 Apr 2012 13:32:15 -0300
Good Monday morning,

I had a fun filled weekend with several things going on.  The Regatta was winding up it's last races yesterday.  Monday and Tuesday there was no wind hence no races.  However, by Thursday the wind picked up and everyone was having a good time racing. 

I had a chance to go down to Nanny Cay yesterday with a friend and check out the racers and the party festivities at the Village.  Most sailors looked happy, sunburned and needing some liquid libations to re-charge themselves. 

This morning the wind has died back down and Sir Frances Drake is flat.  The haze has reappeared today as well, yesterday was glorious with no haze.  

Yesterday while watching some of the racing from my favorite beach....Smuggler's Cove...there was a huge menacing black hulled sailboat with kevlar sails.  It looked from my vantage point to be around 100 feet or more in length.  To me it looked like it came out of a James Bond book.

I'm sure that they were here for Regatta and probably heading south to St. Martin or some other tropical destination.  Maybe even the Med.

I have to say that I'm in the middle of not having WIFI, my Wifi expander went out on me so I'm having to use other wifi sources for posting.  It's a pain and I now know how connected I really am to the internet....I'm tending to go through withdrawal...  My expander will be coming in this week via Fed Ex. I just hope I can figure this out.  I'm not to savvy on the computer hardware or with stereo's either.

the Mermaid Gardener


- BVI Weather
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 1 Apr 2012 15:37:56 -0400 (EDT)
That wasn't an earthquake the other day... it was the new jets landing at the proposed airport expansion...  I hear it's rocking all of East End!
Weather is beautiful Perfect sailing weather and beaching daze!
Dear Miss Mermaid is on her way back to the BVI!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Good Morning BVI
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2012 18:41:19 -0300
Good Morning and hello!

First thing this morning right around 6:00am I felt the earth move under me!! Yep, laying there in bed, just waking up I heard this groan and felt my bed shimmy.  At first in my dazed awakened state after having just flew in yesterday I could not believe I was feeling an earthquake, but yes the USGS posted the earthquake on it's web site, no I was not dreaming!!

Yes in deed it was on, Magnitude of 3.4, 18.621 N 64.558 W, that's roughly 11 miles from East End.  I didn't hear any rattling of my dinner ware or wine glasses, but sure felt it laying there.

Today, after the earthquake I started my day having a yummy breakfast at the Culinary Bakery in Road Town and then spent the afternoon painting water colors with my art group.  It was a really nice way to start my stint here in the BVI. 

Looking forward to posting now that I'm back and will keep you informed on the island events.

the Mermaid Gardener

- Oh-My-Gadda Spring Regatta
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Wed, 28 Mar 2012 10:25:11 -0400 (EDT)
A bit cloudy and overcast today in the BVI. But the boaters are still out in full force, having a blast as Easter is just around the corner.
The BVI Spring Regatta is in full swing March 26-April 1,  but there were no winds to race with the first day.
On a sunnier day, here is the start of the bareboat races.
Sir Richard Branson has his boat Necker Belle entered into the races. Woo hoo, ain't she purdy!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Mixes of Sun,Clouds, Wind and Rain... called Weather???
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sun, 25 Mar 2012 13:04:29 -0400 (EDT)
Small craft should exercise caution
Anchored off Norman Island (AKA Treasure Island) the past few days has been a real mix of conditions.  Most of the nights are reasonably Calm with several showers causing the ol close the hatches then re-open only to close again a few hours later.   The nice thing is my aft water tank is almost full:-D
We did have relatively nice days with mostly sunny skys and good breezes.  I could see a few small white caps out on the Sir Francis Drake Channel and some of the boats out were in a good run.  I'm sure at least a few of them were involved in portions of the Race Week out of Nanny Cay.... just across from my location. 
Water is almost warm enough for me to swim for pleasure:-)  But still I reserve most of it for when I need/ have to or should swim.  That combo is generally caused by when I have to check the anchor, scrub the water line on the boat or take a salt water bath and fresh water rinse off the back of the boat and only occasionally just to cool off after spending too much time reading or doing Sudoku in the cockpit.  It really cools me off when first in but is OK for a short soak but I draw a line at when my lips turn blue and my toes don't want to climb the ladder:-\
This next week looks to have more sunshine and far less rain.  Winds should remain from the East and Northeast for the week ahead, presently near 12 knots but dropping a bit since the Race Week is over;-).  Little chance for any accumulations of rain for a day or so but 40 to 60% chance has jumped back in to the forecast for the mid to end of this next week. Temps will run between 84 in the days to about 75 at night which is just great on a boat, rocking you to sleep with a nice fresh breeze in your face:-).
Actually saw a LOT of my Fat Hog Bay sailors on and off here at the anchorage and I mean seeing a lot of them=-O.  Was perfect weather and location and almost everyone had a great time except on boat load that would not believe that the winds in the bay, often circle several times at night depending on your location.  They found themselves in the moonless re anchor drill at 1 AM only to have to repeat it again at 3 AM anchoring where they should have and where it was recommended when they came in.  Some people just do not have the ability to use local knowledge when it is offered:-! by all those other boats around them.
Jan from some place in Canada  and a few others have asked where is the best place to go while in the BVI.  I had one recently that I sent off a long list of possible places only to find they were coming in on a Cruise ship to Road Town...for 5 hours one Sunday!!!!!!!  In that case all I could say is Get Out of Road Town as it is DEAD on Sundays and go anywhere.....  Others ask about up coming sailing vacations or cruisers passing through that want to meet up with other cruisers.  In each case lots of answers can be given but without an understanding of what a crew likes and dislikes... it is very difficult to answer.  I would advise getting a recent Crushing Guide Book and read it over..... then ask more specific questions so people and answer you better and give more informed advise.
Going to have loads of fun on Monday:  Washing Loads that is.  Time to do the big loads... stuff you don't do with the normal laundry such as the floor mats, thing you use for drapes and sun covers and even hats and blankets.  Getting ready for a trip over to St. Marten... the French side this time.  Hope to make the run just at or after Full Moon and hang a while and possibly visit a couple of more locations while in the area.
Later, Wayward

- Dark and Stormy race was windy but not Dark or Stormy
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Fri, 16 Mar 2012 11:02:48 -0400 (EDT)
East to Northeast Winds 7 to 13 knots are expected over the next few days and seas down to the 3 to 5 foot range.  Looking at only isolated showers until Sunday then.....:-\ well the entire week looks to be 40 to 60% chance of rain and mostly cloudy.  Still, it is a rare day that we don't get at least some sunshine some place on the islands:-).  Just think bright and happy thoughts and Bang... the sun pops out to say hello:-D.
Was on St. Thomas Monday and the ferry ride back was choppy at times.  It was interesting to watch this flying boat come in.
Christmas Cove.jpg
 Looks like Greater St James's Christmas Cove is about full with mostly sailboats.  Even the Northwest mooring on St. John looked near full but past Hawknest until you reach Francis Bay, few boats were out and about or at moorings.  Was into West End Tortola about 5 and it looked near full with only a couple of mooring open.  It had been very breezy for a while and after I arrived at East End and ran into a few sailors returning from the Dark and Stormy Race, I learned that for a change the Dark and Stormy was not Dark and Stormy as it has been the past few years.  It was full of wind=-O and a few boats had some rigging problems but no major problems.  Everyone seems to have had fun but I did not find out who won:-\  But... that is not unusual as most just make the trip for the fun of it and you can not usually tell which boats are actually in the race or not... it is just one huge party.
Doing some plastic repairs on a water tank, hope it works as a new tank will be $$$ and even more $$$ to ship the huge odd shaped thing.... Guess I could fall back to a bladder tank but in my small boat 40 gallons of water in even a bladder tank with baffles is something I don't really want to consider unless I have to.  A special flame treatment with a special ( as in $38.00 for two oz) two part non-epoxy concoction seems to be doing the trick but I do need more rain to totally fill the tank to make sure... looks like I'll have that opportunity next week with the increased rain probability.
Later  Wayward

- Update
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sat, 10 Mar 2012 09:01:02 -0500 (EST)
Small Craft Advisory in effect through Sunday morning
Think this SCA will be extended a few days as we will be having winds today between 6 and 10 knots from the East Northeast then growing to 13 to 18 by Monday with seas running 6 to 8 feet with in a Northern Swell.  Seas may drop to the 4 to 6 range by Mid Weekend but look to increase by Monday back to around 5 to 7 feet with a reduction in the Northern Swells.  Scattered showers as normal should be expected and Partly Sunny;-) days will be with us.  Chance of rain under 20% is expected until later in the week when it will jump up a good deal of rain could occur which is not a bad thing.:-)
I'll be doing a bit of work on my aft water tank this next week, hope is isn't much:-\.  Noticed a leak and have to locate the point or just use the forward tank which reduces my onboard supply more than I feel comfortable with when cruising.  Hope to make a run down to St. Maarten in the next few weeks for a bit.:-D Don't want to have to haul water twice as often:-\.  I know the tank is plastic and hope I'll be able to repair it or replace it quickly.
3 10 radar.gif
Lots of small showers out but they could get a bit more intense by the weekend. 
Must get a few things done this AM, so......
Later Da Wayward Sailor

- Windy
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Wed, 7 Mar 2012 10:39:00 -0500 (EST)
Small Craft Advisory in effect through Saturday afternoon

Winds should run between 20 and 25 knots today from the East Northeast.  It should slowly drop over the remainder of the week but will still be between 10 and 15 by the weekend.  Sea's are running 7 to 9 feet and with the winds you can bet on a wet sail and choppy seas.  With these conditions it may be a good idea for visitors charter people to keep a good idea of exactly where they are and where the best options for a mooring or anchorage will be.  It is not as easy to pick up a mooring with 25 knot winds and with a chop on top of higher seas, although few of the mooring locations should be exposed to the full 9 foot seas.  It may be a great time for charter groups to take advantage of land tours and see more of the islands themselves.  Lots to see on the island's that most charter people usually miss.
Temps will run about 82 as a high today but the normal 84 to 75 will be the general rule for the week.:-)  Rain chance will increase to about 50% for Thursday and Friday then down to the normal 20% for the weekend and partly sunny sky's will be most likely.
Great chance to collect a bit of water over the next few days for those who have the ability:-D
7 mar.jpg
Have a great day:-)
later  Wayward

- Sailing and walkabout weather
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sat, 3 Mar 2012 10:12:34 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution through this evening
Small Craft Advisory in effect from this evening through Sunday afternoon

Should be seeing East to Northeast Winds for next several days between 16 and 21 knots with seas 4 to 7 feet.  Temps about 86 in the days down to 75 at night with an increasing chance of rain up to 40% by mid week, but these will be scattered/ isolated in nature.  Still lots of potential for Sunshine.  Should be nice for sailing about and other outside activity just keep an eye on the clouds:-)
cold for me;-).  Think I'll check out one of those newish Dive Skins while I'm on a walk about.  Have not had a full wet suite for more than a ,,,,MMMMmmmm let us say a Long time;-).  Would probably not expend the effort to put one on if I had it but these Dive Skins I think I could enjoy a quick swim before the actual water temp reached what I feel is nice...... like 85 :-\.  I also need a new snorkeling mask, the ones I now have seem to be ageing and the silicone just does not do what it use to do.  Should not complain as they are all well over 5 years old and have seen lots of rough treatment.
View of A Dock at Nanny Cay.... most of the activity this time of day is down about the F Dock area and the shops.  I'm like a kid in a toy store when I go into the Budget Marine Store:-D.  My good friend generally goes and spends her time at the other shops looking at non hardware items :-\  I can't figure that out.
later Wayward

- Beautiful day for lunch on the beach!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Wed, 29 Feb 2012 11:53:55 -0600
Good Afternoon,

Looks as if Tortola is having another wonderful day.  Caught this webcam shot from the Soddy Dollar.  Everyone looks like they are enjoying lunch on the beach....hey don't get any sand on those burgers!!!


The Mermaid Gardener....hum still trapped in the snow belt.....5" of the white stuff today!! 

Inline image 1

- Sunday Splendor!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 26 Feb 2012 11:20:07 -0600
Good Sunday Morning,

Am still on a walk about up in the snow country, however, each day like the readers of this blog I look at the web cams and check out the weather in the BVI.

Here's the outlook for today.

Looks like the winds are out of the North East at 16MPH and the temperature is 84 degrees.  No rain in sight however the haze has come back to the islands.  This evening they are predicting a 40% chance of rain.

Enjoy this picture.  I will as I look out at a snow covered world!!

the Mermaid Gardener

Inline image 1

- Update
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sat, 25 Feb 2012 12:24:21 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution

Winds are to be East Northeast between 16 and 21 Knots, with seas running 4 to 7 feet.  Isolated Showers can be expected as always about 20% today then up to 40% on Monday.  Temps should run between 86 in the days to 73 at night.  Have Scattered Clouds about not but I see the Heat Index is starting to show up for daytimes on increasing frequency.  Presently the Heat Index is the same as Temps, but we will start seeing the feel of the temps being higher soon.... getting to be summer soon;-)
Made a trip from Road Town to St Thomas a couple of days ago.  Was surprised on how much of a roll was in the Road Town Harbour.  Seem to be at least a couple of feet at the ferry dock area.  Skys had a high overcast but overall the trip was nice.  Did not see a lot of boating activity in BVI and only a bit more near St John and Redhook area of St. Thomas.  Two mid size Cruise boats were anchored off Cruz Bay, St John and they were doing their ferry runs into the docks.  I'll bet Mongoose Junction was full:-).  I think if I were on a similar size boat, going into Cruz Bay would be as much fun if not more fun than spending it at most other locations in the area.  Just wish more aeas were open to anchoring in the St. John area, but most of the shoreline is part of the National Park and you must take a Mooring.  True they are far less expensive than those in the BVI but you are limited in the number of days you can use them per stay and per year is limited to 30 days total.  Few good spots are available to anchor in non park areas.  Even the former anchorage at St. James now has mooring.  These are now free but you have a limit of 10 days use.  They are basically for transit boats and they do enforce the time limits to keep locals from taking all available spots on a continuous basis.... which some charter boat operators still find a work around to do:-\.
Well got many things to do over the next couple of weeks but will try to check in when possible.
Later Wayward
PS  Had a couple of readers ask about the best way in and out of the BVI when coming down for vists and charters.  Most people from North America come in via St. Thomas then ferry to BVI or from PR direct into Beef Island BVI.  BVI can only handle the smaller aircraft.  One alternative many people do not know about is the use of the small twin engine planes from PR such as Cape Air which is a scheduled... and very good service and the non- scheduled flights from several other companies at a higher rate.  Those from Europe can come from some of the other islands with larger airports such as St. Maarten then fly LIAT into Beef Island.  I've done all these except the St. Maarten connection and I prefer to come into Beef Island but it is more expensive and I most often do the St. Thomas connection to the States.  If you really look at the overall cost and if your time means anything to you... it is probably a wash or minor  plus to do the American Airlines or Cape Air into and out of PR than use the St. Thomas airport with it's several airlines then mess with the ferries and then taxi rides with the possibility of not making the last ferry and having to stay in a Hotel in St. Thomas in an unplanned basis:-(

- Bit Overcast
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Wed, 22 Feb 2012 15:30:27 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution
Small Craft Advisory in effect from 9 PM AST this evening through late Saturday night
Today had been a bit overcast but still a very nice day to be out and about.  Seas and winds will be building over the next few days and we can expect winds between 14 to 19 knots, mostly from the East Northeast.  We will see seas of 5 to 8 feet in Northern Swells.  We will have an increasing chance of isolated showers over the Weekend and early next week... about 40% or so.  We will probably have some surfers out on the Northern Beaches for the weekend and boats will have to take care with the swells in unprotected areas.
Highs about 84 with lows about 73 for most of the following 7 days... about normal for this time of year:-) The Sunshine factor will probably be a bit lower than normal with forecast for Partly Cloudy conditions for next 10 days.
Well I gotta get some work done before a Sundowner can be made:-\
Later Wayward

- Update
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Tue, 21 Feb 2012 10:33:46 -0500 (EST)
Winds are rather light at 8 to 13 knots from the EastNorthEast but will fresh a bit in a few days to 11 to 16 and more from the East.  Seas are running 2 to 4 feet now but will increase to 6 to 8 feet as the winds shift more East.
It is 81 now which is about 3 degrees from the days high and the nights should be back around 73.  Overall just a nice time to be in Paradise:-)  Just a few scattered showers but about Friday we will have a 40% chance of rain.
While shopping around.... actually just window shopping and I do not even need windows:-\ I did notice this item which brought a smile to my face and a shock to my heart when I saw what the price was.
A mermaid with a credit card!!!!!!!!:-!
Later Wayward

- Heavenly Daze in the Virgin Islands
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2012 13:51:53 -0500 (EST)
What a beautiful day for sailing to a gorgeous beach for rum and sun. Weather is just perfect with balmy trade winds and crystal clear waters.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Nice Weekend
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sun, 19 Feb 2012 12:02:07 -0500 (EST)
Overall nice weather so far on this weekend.  Winds are swinging more to the normal EastSoutheast to EastNortheast with probable more North winds by Thursday.  Seas are 3 to 5 now but expected to go up to 6 yo 8 by Thursday. 
Temps should be between highs of 84 and night time lows of 73 with isolated showers.  Had a short one pass over us about dawn today but it is now mostly Sunny with some possible build ups to the Northeast.
Lots of boats about and the Thunder you hear is from the Big Go Fast Boats.... wonder how they pay for those things:-X.
I've been on a reading binge for the past few weeks.  Knocking out a book or two every few days.... not a fast reader but every so often I just feel like reading.  I was on an Audio Book binge earlier and I would knock out some of those in a couple of days, mostly at night.  Have an Ipod a very lovely person gave me a while back and have been hitting some classics found on http://www.booksshouldbefree.com  Great to kick back and close your eyes and allow dramatic readings to send you to places.  The audio's have improved a great deal.  Some are like professional readings while some of them are less so but all are volunteer readers and all is free.  I've probably done several dozen in the past 12 months.  Completed almost all of the Sherlock Holmes books and lots of sailing related stuff and even some of the things I was "forced" to read in school which not seem much more interesting:-\  I had not known that Robinson Caruso had follow up books:-!.
Love to visit the book swap areas at the different Marinas and some hotel have here on island.  Always can find some very new/ recently released books available and who want to spend the cost of a 6 pack of Red Stripe when you can get them for free.... And have a Cold Red Stripe while you read one under the shade of your cockpit's Bimini:-D.
Well, have a few things that need to get done... such as get ready for Lunch.... and maybe a cold Red Stripe..MMmmmm sounds great to me:-)
Later, Wayward

- Bucolic Scenes from the BVI
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Fri, 17 Feb 2012 07:49:46 -0500 (EST)
Scattered showers, a balmy temps in the mid 70's. With about 20-25 mph winds, its a great day to sail to paradise. One of my favorite places to sail to is Anegada.
A bucolic scene from Anegada.
Boats at Sopers Hole just waiting to fill their sails with the prevailing tradewinds.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- More Norther weather
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Thu, 16 Feb 2012 13:07:26 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution
Winds will be from the East Northeast to Northeast for the next several days between 10 and 16 knots.  Seas 3 to 6 feet will continue to have a long duration Northern Swell for at least the next 48 hours according to most of the forecast.  We are seeing a near calm on the protected side of Tortola in the last few early AM hours with winds increasing as the sun gets higher.
Day time temps will be about average at 83ish and nights down to about 73ish.  Nice sleeping weather:-) and not bad sailing weather.  Seem to be seeing a few more what appear to be private sailboats and probably a bit lower number of boats from the major Charter companies.... of course some of these private looking boats may be charters from the 2nd and 3rd level companies which often do not mark their boats.
Had word that some friends were enjoying the outside movies at Bitter End and enjoying their anchorage.  A look at Scrub Island, Marina Cay, Trellis Bay and West End shows reasonable activity but not near full in most cases.  Cooper Island seems to be about Full every time I get a look at it.  They seem to be doing something right!:-D
Talking about being full... I went to the big RiteWay on Saturday afternoon....GEEEESSsss  Reminded me of Saturdays at the Piggley Wiggly when I was a kid.  Can't make it down the isles because everyone was stopped talking to someone blocking traffic:-\  Some kids were running around wild with little or no concern expressed by anyone.  Saw one grab a hand hold to make a fast turn around an isle bringing down a avalanche of stuff onto the floor, thankfully is was   Think I'll try to remember to go to the store mid week when I normally do!!:-!boxed stuff and not glass!
AND,,,:-D:-D:-D:-D I want to thank the Fantastic Readers who sent da ol sailor a Valentine message on the 14th.  We have some very creative and a few Weird but still great readers!!!=-O
I attempted to use Skype on the 14th but only got the message that all circuits were busy and to try again then I lost internet on my dial up and then could not get back on Skype at all.  Think a lot of love talk was talking all the available bandwidth:-*
Latter, Wayward

- Nice days and nights... and Happy Valentine Day
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Tue, 14 Feb 2012 08:39:17 -0500 (EST)
Small Craft Advisory in effect through Wednesday evening
That weather thing I pointed out a couple of post ago is now here in the form of Northeast Winds in the moderate to fresh range for the next week.  Forecast so show winds are expected to increase from 9 to 12 knots today to 12 to 17 by Thursday.  That is far better sailing weather for the charter people than the 4 to 8 knots we have had for the past few days.  Most of Monday was almost calm here in East End and we had winds on Saturday that moved from the West to the Southeast with a few calms between.  While Sunday and Monday were almost totally Sunshine, today we have mostly cloudy start to the day.  Still great chance for some sun later.
Seas are running 8 to 10 feet in Northern Swells early today but should drop to 5 to 7 and lower over the next few days.  The Sir Francis Drake Channel appears to be less than the 5 to 7 where it is sheltered from the Northern Swells, but it is probably a bit higher where they come through the passages.
I have seen several large dark clouds about so far this AM.  We have a 40% change of rain today and night but it lowers for the remainder of the week, until the weekend when it again is expected to be about 40% chance and where the isolated showers can always be expected to pop up for a short time at any time;-)
I've had another question about BVI Courtesy Flag. While several sources give conflicting advise, which is what you also get if you ask local Customs and Immigrations Officers... which I have, here is what appears to be the most correct as it is what is actually what is most used here in the BVI.
""from Flag Advisor
"Courtesy flags are usually Civil Ensigns—not the national flag of the country. Not every country has a civil ensign. However, most former British colonies do; it is usually the red variant of the flag. It’s considered a horrible breach of etiquette to fly the blue national flag. So, if the flag that we catalog doesn't look exactly like the national flag that you remember, it’s probably a civil ensign. " "
That refers to the Courtesy Flag... which is a flag shown on boats not fully documented in the country.  This does not include boats that are registered or imported temporally in the BVI but documented in another country.  My boat is imported (since I am a legal Resident of the BVI) but remains Documented as US, most of this is basically a local tax issue, and I fly the Red background with virgin as do about 99% of all other boats in similar status.  If your documented in the BVI or UK you may fly the basic Red UK flag with out the virgin as your boats flag but the Courtesy Flag should remain the same Red with Virgin although that sounds a bit strange but seems to be what most of the larger boats/ ships do when in this area.
Bottom line is it does not seem to matter to most people including the Customs and Immigration people, particularly with Charter boats.  Privately owned boats such as mine, may be a bit different I have been told by one person who was apparently ask why no BVI flag was on his Starboard Flag halyard when for some reason he had several others flying.... which is totally WRONG:-\
I recommend using the Red Background with virgin as the courtesy flag when in the BVI but not until you have cleared in and remove it when you check out.  Note the Courtesy Flag is ALWAYS to be flown on the Starboard side on the Forward Mast.  I've seen several people fly a number of Courtesy Flags on the Port side of the Forward Mast as a sign of where they have been... That seems to be OK and that is also the only place you should fly your Pirate Flag8-) unless U B 1;-)
later, Wayward

- Day is Done in the BVI
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 13 Feb 2012 17:07:22 -0500 (EST)
The sun is about to set as seen from Jost Van Dyke. A great day to be limin' at the beach, soaking up the beauty and warm waters.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Happy Valentines On the Way!
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 12 Feb 2012 16:59:56 -0500 (EST)
A great day to be limin' at the beach bars in the BVI. Put the rum in the coconut and drink it all up!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- FOG???
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sat, 11 Feb 2012 08:41:45 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution
Today we will see East Southeast winds between 12 and 18 knots and for the next few days this is expected to drop to around 8 to 13 knots.  Seas are running 4 to 6 feet but could go up by Tuesday to 6 to 8 feet as the winds shift to more of a Southeast direction.  Water temps are about 80 degrees inshore and about 78 offshore.
Daytime temps could reach 84 for the weekend but look to drop to about 82 for the early weekdays.  Nights should run between 75 to 73 over the same time frame.
Did a walk from East End to Trellis Bay's Loose Mongoose to visit with friends.... Ok to have a drink or two with friends;-).  Very pleasant walk and great weather to walk in.  By mid afternoon it was obvious the haze was turning into what looked to be more of a fog.  Virgin Gorda was almost lost from view and even Scrub Island was more of a profile as few distinguishing marks were clear.  By the time I returned to my mooring in Fat Hog Bay, even the area of Long Look was almost hidden in a low fog bank and not the more typical low cloud.  This AM just before sunrise the "fog" was still dense and cool on the skin as I took a look from the cockpit with coffee in hand.  This "fog" seem to burn off well enough as the sun started to rise and we even had this very fine mist that fell from the sky but no clouds were overhead.  Now, 9AM we still have a distant haze where Peter Island is only an outline with out much in the way of details.  Early AM sky is more of a florescent look than real sunlight.  Sorry these do not show up on my photo attempts.... actually appears my lens may have fogged over:-\.
Did get a few shots as I walked around Trellis Bay, in between a few "talks" with friends.  Noted lots of small Conch, generally between 4 and 6 inches and some of the Red Starfish all very near shore in water under a foot deep.
Well da ol Photo thinge on AOL seems to be taking the AM off today so no photos:-(
Later, Wayward

- Back to Work????
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Fri, 10 Feb 2012 09:52:19 -0500 (EST)
Small craft should exercise caution
Winds are from the Southeast to East at 12 to 18 knots and should remain in that direction until early Monday.  Seas are 4 to 6 feet and I'm seeing a bit of a swell in them down the Sir Francis Drake Channel.  A few boats are doing the hobby horse thing with an occasional bow into a larger wave with a nice salt water shower for the remainder of da boat! =-O Looks for a nice day not to go into the wind but for most sail boats the southern element is helping go up and down the SFD Channel.  Overall boat traffic seems to be down a bit... not a lot of action out there.
Still having the occasional rain shower but it is very spotty and while the winds do normally pick up a good deal the rain and winds pass quickly.  Temps for day's will run about 84 and nights about 73, about normal for this time of year.  In general " In the eastern Caribbean Sea, clusters of isolated showers will move across the Lesser Antilles and portions Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands" is reported by the cute Weather Underground forecaster, Keri Kiefer;-)  Looking at the two major radar sites, and the Sats this looks to be probably for the next few days. 
10 feb.jpg
The Sat loop shows the weather is actually in a rotation about the tip of the DR, and is in a clockwise rotation bringing our weather mostly from the East and possibly pulling some of that Northern stuff down on us next week....too early to know much yet.
 Well, I could use a bit more rain for the water tanks, what we have had is more of a deck wash down than a tank filler:-\. Will have to change filters again soon but it sure beats hauling jerry tanks around!!
Forecast for winds on Monday vary a bit, most forecast are for winds from the South but at least one has them from the Northeast.... I'll guess it will be more Southeast like it is now.  It will change in and around the rain cells.  We had one a day or two ago that had me pointing North at one point in the night only to swing Southeast by dawn.... just makes for a nice sleep as the boat rocks about:-)
Got a message from the Mermaids that I needed to get back to work:-!.  Mmmm work is a 4 letter word then I recalled dem mermaids were in the traveling mood and I needed to get back to doing a report or two... well that isn't really work but it is OK with me.  Has been nice weather to Start several boat jobs.....  Problem is, while several... possibly Many would be a better description, have started.... few have been completed:-!  Ye sailors out there know what that means.  Darn hard to move about the forward portion of da boat with all the "projects" carefully laid out..... well OK..  Dumped around randomly awaiting a part or some item needed to complete them... occasionally it is a need to feel like wasting good napping time or reading time or walking time or cooking and eating time, to do one of those jobs:-\
Later, Wayward

- Piture Perfect in the Virgin Islands
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 9 Feb 2012 11:35:31 -0500 (EST)
Just a beautiful day in paradise.  The usual clouds and scattered rains, but a perfect time to be in the beautiful BVI. By now, most folks have recuperated from the full moon hangovers.
If you are coming to the BVI, you an get maps and info here.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- More clouds than sun
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 9 Feb 2012 07:10:11 -0400
Good Morning,

Yesterday was a stellar day, sunny, light breezes, a couple of showers but nothing that would fill up our cisterns. This morning it's looking like we have more clouds on the horizon than yesterday.  Sir Frances Drake channel is looking choppy and churned up a bit.  We are currently at 73 degrees and expecting high of 84 degrees.  Winds are out of the east south east between 11-15mph.  No real chance of heavy rain today but it's looking like we have a 20% chance tonight and on Friday. Maybe not a beach day for Friday.

Sometimes here on the island you just have things come into your life and you jump on that idea.  I was reading BVI Newsonline and saw that the Agriculture center was having a plant sale.  Of course being 1/2 a mermaid and 1/2 a gardener I jumped on the chance to go to the Agriculture center and check out what plants could I not live without.  They had, mango's, golden Apple, avacado, guava, and carambola.  I jumped on the thought of getting a carambola tree!!  There I am going through the carambola trees and picked one that already had a Star fruit growing on it.  I think the lady from the Ag department thought I was a bit funny wanting just the right one.  As it happened I found it quickly, I didn't take an hour to look each one and turn it around, just found one that looked healthy, happy and had a piece of fruit growing on it. We hauled it over to my car and got the Star fruit in the trunk, thank god for small SUV's and off I was back to my house.  I've decided on it's new location in my garden which is a  sunny spot, has some protection from wind, and will be able to get rain water to live on between watering. 

Now all I need to do is wait for it to adjust to it's new home and start producing fruit for me.  I love making pickled carambola.  Star fruit yet????

This weekend if you are on island, check out Farmers week down at the College, a lot of vendors, livestock, produce, awards are being given out to local farmers.  A fun afternoon to enjoy being at a local fair.

the Mermaid Gardener
carambola going to new home.jpg 

- Dark and stormy...and not the drink!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Tue, 7 Feb 2012 15:38:39 -0400
Good Afternoon!

Here's a picture of the skies this morning after this huge cloud bank came rolling over us. A bit dark and stormy, mainly dark and not too much stormy!!!  Winds are up again since this stuff then through this morning!   A great day to sail!!

the Mermaid Gardener


- Surfs up on north side!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Tue, 7 Feb 2012 07:30:54 -0400
Good Morning,

Yesterday a sailor friend and I went over the hill and through the dale to Josiah's Bay!!  His first time to actually be on the beach we attempted to get there one other time however, the roads were still washed out after the hurricane, so all he could see is the washed out parking lot.  Once you pull into the parking lot and collect all your stuff from the car...hum I tend to bring a lot of stuff to the beach...like beach chairs, sarongs for laying out like a blanket on the beach.  They are the best, you can shake out the sand so quickly and easily.  I also carry the usual no brainer things like, sunscreen, a book, hat, and food magazines.  Then I have the bag with the beverages and snacks.  I just love having brought some of my own goodies for a late afternoon snack.  Our arms full of beach stuff we walk past Naoimi's beach bar/restaurant and my friend stops dead in his tracks because the surf was high and he was amazed at the bay.  The mist from the crashing waves was heavy in the air and you could taste the salt spray. 

We found a great little spot under one of the banyo's (sp????) okay you know those shady things that you can sit under.....

Our afternoon consisted of watching the surf roar in and the crazy tourists trying to body surf in that stuff.  We agreed that there was no way we were going in.  The life guards were there and it was a red flag day.  So both of us felt that we would have more fun just limin on the beach.  Had a great order of Honey stung chicken at Naoimi's, her place is right as you walk onto the beach, she has surf boards for rent and possibly boogie boards as well.

All and all we had a great afternoon walking the beach, talking the afternoon away, snacking, and limin.  Some days"Life is just a Beach"!!!

This morning we have a huge cloud bank to the south of us, looks like there could be quite a bit of rain.  Winds are moderate for this time of year, 12-14mph and our temperature today will be around 84 degrees.  Very Nice!!


the Mermaid Gardener

josiahs bay.jpg

- New found treasure!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 5 Feb 2012 08:29:18 -0400
Good Morning,

Where you may ask is there new found treasure on Tortola?  Through the coconut telegraph I learned of a treasure that is little known on the island.  It is the Roger Downing Mangrove Boardwalk.   A friend and I decided to go exploring yesterday to try to find this Mangrove boardwalk.  Folks told us it was down by the College.  Upon arriving at the college we knew it had to be over by the Marine school building.  Off we trekked into the bush and found a dirt road, well we where told to look for dirt is was actually gravel instead, but that made for less squishy mud oozing over my white flip flop sandals.  (I didn't plan very well...hum white flip flops!!)  We headed towards the shoreline of Paraquitta Bay and there was the start of the Boardwalk.  It had just been dedicated at the end of January. 

The boardwalk wound through the mangroves, not too many critters were lurking around, but we saw many small crab holes, spiders, heard frogs and there were some unknown birds that were calling in the mangrove.  The boardwalk is yet to be completed but there are benches for you to rest and sit a spell listening the the clatter of the mangrove limbs raking across each other when the wind blew.  It was quite peaceful, the sound of the trees reminded me of how I would think bamboo might sound clattering up against each other.  The boardwalk looks as if it will circle back to the Marine College though a swampy area were the birds were active, that would be a great addition to the boardwalk.

My friend kept a keen eye out for alligator's but none were to be found.  We also looked for iguana's but I think that the mangroves are so dense that they would not be able to support themselves in there.  It was a really good experience in understanding the intregal part that the mangroves play during hurricane season.  Mangroves help control erosion from the storm surge created by the hurricane and we end up with dramatically less damage further in the island because of the mangroves.  

If you happen to see the small PVC mangroves, the islanders have been trying to establish the mangroves around the island in different bays.  They are just baby mangroves!!

It's anther lightly breezy day here, 84 degrees will probably be our high.....things are good...no hurricanes....and we have the mangroves to help do damage control!!

the Mermaid Gardener

Mangrove 1.jpg

mangrove walk 2.jpg     mangrove walk 3.jpg

- Get Ready...SAIL!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 3 Feb 2012 14:01:30 -0400
Good afternoon,

On your mark.....get ready.....SAIL!!  Winds are up and sailboats are out in full force today,  They all seem to enjoying the steady trade winds.  We have a wonderful temperature of 84 degrees, with winds out of the east south east at 15 mph.  A great day to go sailing or just not stress about life and enjoy the moment.

the Mermaid Gardener

conch 1.jpg

- Windy and squally
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 2 Feb 2012 21:58:36 -0400
Good Morning!

It's a bright sunny day here with spotted clouds on the horizon.  Last night we had several squalls come through with misty rain and then one shower that gave us a little bit more rain.  Our temperature is currently 79 degrees and winds are 12 mph out of the east.

They are saying that we could get up to 82 degrees which will be nice, I'm hoping to catch some sun rays later on this afternoon. 

Yesterday when I was driving into Road Town I saw that the Brandywine sign was back up and they added a new smaller sign that said "opening soon".  Brandywine has been closed since I believe last year during festival.  I hope that they will be opening soon, it is always nice to have another option for food on the east end of the island.

Last week I again tried the newest small "to go" restaurant in East End.  "La Mia".  It's a small local place that serves breakfast, lunch and dinner every day!  I've had their breakfast burrito in the past and it was wonderful.  Last week I tried the Chicken Marsala pasta.   That was really good too!.  You can call in your order and they make it from scratch.  Nothing is mass produced or held in the kitchen.  If you are in East End sometime it's right across from the East End police station on the sea side.  You can take it to go or they do have a couple of picnic tables that you can sit, rest and eat your lunch.

Going to do my artsy thing this morning and enjoy the trade winds!!

the Mermaid Gardener

- Da Lobster mon comin on da beach!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Tue, 31 Jan 2012 17:58:47 -0400
Good Afternoon!

Had a great feast over the weekend!  Was down at Trellis Bay having lunch with a good friend and several other friends up at the bar said hey there's the lobster man!  They told me that if I wanted a lobster I should run over there and check out his lobsters!  I thought sure why not I love spontaneity!!  I pulled out a $20 bill and ran over asked him to show me a smaller lobster, and he went through him mesh bag and picked out the wonderful lobster!  I said how much??  He said $20!!  I said great that's dinner!!  He was between a 2 -3 pound lobster. 

I wasn't quite sure how to handle this lobster, so the lobster mon gave me the tentacles to carry him back to the bar.  There I was with this lobster flapping his tail at me....I was giggling and having a GREAT time!!  The kind ladies at the Loose Mongoose put my lobster in the frig so that I could sit back down and finish my mid afternoon lunch.  All the while my friend and I were trying to figure out what we were going to serve with this wonderful looking Lobster......   

Decided on the way to cook this lobster we stopped at the new little Rite Way in East end, picked up asparagus, butter, garlic, lemon, and a bottle of nice wine.  So that was dinner menu!  Now it was head up the hill to get the pot hot with boiling water...we boiled up the lobster and sat down to a fantastic feast island style.  I can't explain just how good that Tortola lobster was...but I can admit that there was not a speck of lobster left on our plates!!  A great memory here in the BVI!! 

Maybe I'll do that again soon!!

OMG I was so excited about that lobster I forgot to write about the weather for you folks that may be coming down here soon!!

Winds have been up off and on over the last few days, Sunday was a stay at home and watch movies kind of day, rain, sprinkles, more rain, wind and cool winds.  The temperature right now at dinnertime is 79 degrees, and winds are 14 mph straight out of the east.  We have a 50% chance of rain tonight, that's good it will keep the islands green and the cisterns full.  Tomorrow it looks like the projected high for tomorrow is 82 degrees, clear in the morning, and partly cloudy in the afternoon.

Well now that I wrote about that wonderful lobster I've gotten hungry, maybe leftovers? 

From a beach lobster lovin mermaid gardener!!


lobster feast.jpg

- Wintry mix of weather
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 27 Jan 2012 08:05:24 -0400
Good Burr Morning!

This mermaid is feeling the cold down here!  Snow ???!!  Where??? Only in my freezer that I had to defrost yesterday, hum maybe that's why I felt chilled??  Actually the winds were cool coming down from the North East. Skies are grey again and winds are steady out of the East at 9mph, but up here on the ridge the wind is probably 10-15 mph. 

Sunrise broke this morning though a rain shower which really gave the impression of wintry skies.  Wonder if the BVI has ever had hail?  I'll have to ask around and maybe check in with Dear MissMermaid on her experience of living here. 

Yesterday ended up feeling like I was walking sideways, inner ear problem I thought.  I drove to Road Town and went into Eureka Medical clinic, did the walk in service.  It was great no one was waiting so I saw the doctor right away.  He diagnosed me with having not enough sunshine and warm weather......no really, he said that it was a sinus infection that is giving me the inner ear problem....not too many Dark and Stormy's, hence walking sideways!!.  The interesting thing is that he asked where I lived, I told him East End up on the ridge line.  He then said in the past few weeks he has had many locals coming in with the same thing that I have.  He attributed it to the change in weather, off and on showers, and the wind being cold.  Tis the season for the Christmas winds and sailors love them!!!  They get to heal over if they want or have a nice quick down wind sail.

I have always been pleased with the treatment that I receive at Eureka Medical clinic even in November when I twisted my ankle they diagnosed it right on. 

Now that I'm doing better with my walking sideways I hope to find a beach someplace out of the wind, just read a book and catch some sun rays this afternoon.  For today's weather it looks as if we will continue this grey cloudy weather, with intermittent showers.  It's 73 degrees right now they are saying we will get up to 81 degrees with a 40% chance of rain today, winds 10-15 Mph out of the east.  The extended forecast looks as if we will cool off during the day and the average high will be 79 degrees.  Could be worse....snow!!!  No complaints here with 79 degrees!


This morning's dawn...a wintry looking sky!


the Mermaid Gardener

- Movie and a nap
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 26 Jan 2012 08:18:39 -0400
Good Morning,

Okay call me a wimp but for several days now we have had rather cool weather here, especially at night. When I woke this morning it was 71 degrees Burrrr!!!! 

I slept with a light blanket on last night, windows closed.  The winds have been gusty out of the north east, this morning they are 10 mph again out of the east north east. The weather guys are saying that we will get up to 80 degrees with a 30% chance of rain.  From my point of view looking out over the channel the sky is more clouds than blue sky.  Looking south there is some rain on the horizon another day of possible showers.

Have to say that I finally had an opportunity to go to the movies on Monday night with a friend.  I've heard so many interesting things about this theater.  We started our evening out by going to Capricio's for an early dinner, had a lovely antipasto, pizza, we split both of these and then I introduced my friend to Tiramisu.  He just loved it, now he is on a mission he told me......to look for lady fingers in the bakery aisle and attempt to make it himself!!  Good luck finding lady fingers, that sounds like it will be a 3-4 store shopping day!!

The theater is nice on the inside with a large restaurant area, which I didn't even know existed and we could have went there for dinner, but I think that the peacefulness of outdoor dining was exactly what the night called for instead of crazy loud music.  The theaters are on the second floor, along with the popcorn stand.  It's was funny we wanted to order pop for the movie, and asked the size of drinks, the gal pointed to the refrigerator filled with juices and some cans of pop.  I asked "So the fountain drinks are not working? " She didn't quite understand my terminology about fountain drinks and pointed again to the cooler filled with drinks.  We both said "Ahhh' okay two cans of pop.  Next was attemping to buy popcorn, she had small, medium, and large listed on the sign, we said 1 medium....nope only small. So she gave us 2 small bags instead of a medium....I don't quite get the logic but figured okay fine with me. It must have been that there were out of the medium and large bags...."all finish" and the cargo ship hasn't arrived yet.....LOL

The movie we saw was the "The girl with the dragon tattoo"  I've read all three of the books as well as watched the foreign films made from the books.  I have to say that it was good, but I seemed to enjoy the Swedish films interpretation of the caricatures  more than the American version.  I did love Christopher Plummer in this version though.  Hey I'm no Rotten Tomatoes nor Siskel and Ebert, it's just my humble movie goers opinion.  The other bothersome aspect was that the theater had a poor copy of the movie, there were scratches in the film, like lines running across the screen.   I do have to tell you what was interesting was the ladder that was used to get up to the projection room which was right as you walked into the theater to sit, ladder, trap door projection room. The movie started and sorry to say there was no "Tom and Jerry" cartoons or a dancing hot dog to remind you to buy food, no previews, nope the movie started and off to the races we went. I was told that in theater one you can purchase a lazy boy chair, have popcorn that the girl brings you and you could sleep through a movie if you wanted.  We were in theater 2 with no lazy boys....I may have to try going to theater 1 sometime to check it out.

I'm going to figure out my day, looks like a gloomy cold winter day here, I think I'll curl up with a good book, sip a cup of tea, and maybe pull the covers over my head and take a nap!!!   

Cheers from this chilly Mermaid Gardener!!!

Nap time.jpg

- Squirrel..ie weather!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 23 Jan 2012 08:05:58 -0400
Good Morning,

Yesterday was filled with squirrel..ie weather.  The day started out nice with puffy clouds no rain but you could tell that the winds were slightly picking up.  By around 2pm the skies darkened and it looked like dusk out.  There were numerous scattered showers, several I saw over at Peter Island, and the haze seemed to be thicker.  Winds picked up and it was a rather gloomy afternoon,  no worries though we did not have any flying squirrels making it squirrel..ie. 

This morning there is a bit of haze as I look out over Sir Frances Drake Channel, earlier saw a cruise ship come in as well.  Skies are filled with fewer clouds, and the sun is bright even with a bit of haze out on the horizon.

It's currently 75 degrees with winds out of the north  at 10mph looks as if we may get up to 82 degrees this afternoon but there is a 50% chance of rain.  After looking at the San Juan Radar most of the showers are south of us between Tortola and St. Croix they are moving west southwest, however when I check out Tropnet radar I do see a small line of showers that may be coming our way later today.  It might be a good day to carry an umbrella. 

Yesterday my friends finally had to come back from their one week of sailing around the BVI to Tortola for their last night at the dock.  They had spent Saturday night over at Marina Cay on anchor since all the balls were taken.  It probably was due to the Polish Regatta that was still going on when they were there.  Yesterday morning they pulled up anchor and docked at Hodges Creek and gave me a call.  I was able to bring them up to my house making 2 trips.  They had wanted to see my house and check out what living on the island is really like.  The fun part was that they brought all their extra food and beverage for me.  I was impressed that they actually didn't have very much to leave me.  They provisioned well and ate all their meals on board except at the Top of the Baths restaurant.  They were all thrilled at the showers at Spanish Town, as I knew they would be.  The highlight for some of them was the Baths, others it was meeting Richard Branson over at Norman Island at Pirates restaurant.  You just never know who you are going to meet when you are down here.  My visit with them here at my house was a pleasant one they loved the view and enjoyed asking questions about living here on the island.

A gentle reader of stormcarib wrote me recently and said that Head and Shoulders shampoo works really well with salt water on the boat.  I passed this on to the Captain of the charter and he thanked me for the gouge.  He said that he will remember that the next time he's down sailing with friends.  They were sad to have to get back to the boat, but they still had to sail down to Sunsail.
They are flying out this morning back to fly over country and I've heard that they will be arriving back home with just a little snow on the ground.  Yikes that dreaded "S" word!!!  

Well no worries here about that "S" word!!  Maybe just a passing shower!


The Mermaid Gardener

Enjoy your Monday!!


- Polish Regatta at Trellis
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 22 Jan 2012 07:51:03 -0400
Good Morning,

Yesterday morning was hit and miss on the weather.  We had spotty showers but nothing that put any amount of water in my cistern.  At the time of the misty rain I had my electrician over installing a new outdoor patio light that I brought down from the states.

I know you are asking, do you not have hardware stores on island that would have lights?  Yes, however the selection is limited and there are times that they have no inventory, as the locals say "All finish" meaning that they are out of stock, or the cargo ship has not arrived with their shipment, or they are no longer going to carry it.  I usually will look over at Clarence Thomas hardware store, but if they do not have something that I like I then decide to purchase it in the states and bring it down.  I'm sure TSA thought it quite weird to see inside my carry on an outside light fixture!!!

Once the rain stopped my electrician was able to finish the job.  Afterward I met up with a friend and we went to Trellis Bay for lunch.  We could not believe how crowded the mooring field was.  Unbeknown to us there was a Polish Regatta and memorial plaque service being held over on Bellamy Island for Wladek Wagner, who circumnavigated the world from 1932 and completed it in 1939. He died in 1992 and would never see this day but so many others are commemorating his circumnavigation. This marks the 100 anniversary of his birth and 80th anniversary of his circumnavigation.   I'm sure that there were at least 30 boats flying the Polish flag in the mooring field.  Quite the sight.  Wlakek Wagner and his wife lived on Bellamy Island until Tony Snell bought out Wagner back in the 70's and created the Last Resort restaurant. There is so much history of this island that unless you seek it out or hear it from locals you will never know some of the interesting and very historic events that happened on the island.   It was a good afternoon at Trellis. 

Cheers to Wladek Wagner and his life's adventures and to those that are keeping the island history alive! 

the Mermaid Gardener

Polish Regatta 1.jpg

- Just a touch of pink!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Fri, 20 Jan 2012 09:42:46 -0400
Good Morning,

It's currently 78 degrees but it feels like 75 degrees.  Winds are 7 mph out of the North East.  It's quite a pretty morning, looks as if everyone out on boats are still having bacon and eggs or just waking up.  Very few boats are out sailing!  There will be again a fair amount of motor sailing, but I suspect many folks will enjoy a lazy down wind sail with jib only.  I love those down wind sails when I can work on my suntan, read a book and enjoy a beverage!  Got to admit that I'm a fair weather sailor too. 

One time when I had friends down for a fun filled week of sailing, my one friend was struck by how many chickens and especially roosters are free range here on Tortola and the other islands.  Each morning he would complain about hearing the roosters at 430am waking him up.  We laughed and tried to tell him that it is just the way of the islands, free range roosters and chickens.  It never failed that if we picked up a ball or were at a marina like Spanish Town the roosters would wake him up.  To this day when I talk with him about his trip down here sailing he inevitably will mention those pesky roosters!!!    We laugh and know that he's got a great story to tell his friends.  I don't think he ever took a photo of one of the culprits that kept him awake. 

I see so many tourists photographing chickens and roosters.  I'm sure that if I took the time to look back in my photo's I'd probably find pictures that I took on my first visit here.  After having spent time down here I really don't hear them signaling daybreak. 

Maybe I'm already awake!!

I've been seeing sunrise most mornings enjoying the peacefulness of the island before the hustle and bustle of the day starts. 

Yesterday I took this photo of some Vinca or others down here call it periwinkle, it's true name is Vinca.  I have various colors of Vinca in my gardens that line my driveway and car port.  They are forgiving when we have no rain and do love to drape down my rock walls.  A pretty sight indeed!


the Mermaid Gardener

A touch of pink.jpg

- Peek a boo I see you!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Thu, 19 Jan 2012 17:51:18 -0400
Good Afternoon,

Temperature for those of you way up north is 79 degrees and winds are 6mph out of the north east.  Seas are flat and Cooper is packed!! They are enjoying a nice sunset this evening.  I have friends down from the north land flyover country down here sailing.  They arrived on Sunday and after a bit of a slow start they are now out sailing.  Their plans were to head out for Norman, pick up a ball, and go to the Willy "T".  Day 2 was going to be Cooper but since they had a delayed departure I bet they are at Spanish Town and enjoying the Baths.  Monday night when I was enjoying lasagna on the dock with them they were picking my brain for places to go and what was new in Tortola.  I expressed my love of going to the Top of the Bath's restaurant for lunch.  They thought that sounded like a great plan, I advised them to stop in to the restaurant before they walked the paths in case there was a cruise ship over at Spanish Town.  They bus the cruise shippers up to the baths and it can be very difficult to get in for lunch without a reservation.

 I know that they wanted to have a really nice shower at Spanish Town.  The guy who is the Captain for the week, him and his wife have been down here many times and know just how nice the showers are at Spanish Town.  His guests were all miffed by how excited we were about showers.  Well I tell you the showers at Spanish Town are all marble and beautiful.  Having a Hollywood shower is the best of all, a nice long hot shower, not the quick conserve water on the boat shower with marginally luke warm water!  I'm sure his friends will be thrilled after not having had a nice shower in a few days!! 

They probably had to put out the jib, the main and motor sail today.  There just was not much wind out there.  I don't mind since over the past few days the trade winds have been up high.  There was no way those no see ums can bite me in that kind of wind.  Too bad since I enjoy dousing the bites with rum, yep that good old wives tale remedy. A little dab on the bite will do it and a little shot in my dark and stormy.  Helps those no see um bites, they just don't seem to be quite so itchy.

Hum wonder if that Rum on the bite is effecting me????  I bet it's more likely the stormy and dark......ooops the dark and stormy......hey pass that rum back here I think I need to take care of that no see up bite on my tongue!!!  LOL

Cheers to no see ums!!  Good excuse for a dark and stormy!!

the Mermaid Gardener
peek a boo I see you.jpg

- Hummingbirds vs trade winds
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2012 10:34:13 -0400
Good Morning,

We have a bright and sunny day here after an evening of some squally weather.  Had one huge squall that put a fair amount of water in my cistern.  The winds whipped up as it approached the island and it blew quite hard.  Today even the hummingbirds are having a difficult time flying in the wind.  Winds are ENE at 15 mph so the hummingbirds are looking for a bit wind shelter.  I've seen several come to my feeders this morning but they are finding it difficult to hover and drink the nectar from my feeders.  Right now I'm seeing the green hummingbirds.  We have several varieties that make a stopover here in Tortola as they make their way up north once spring has sprung.  Will keep my eyes open for the other varieties.

Yesterday I saw this lovely hibiscus that was stunning just at sunset.  Enjoy!

the Mermaid Gardener

resized flower.jpg

- Showers here and there....
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 15 Jan 2012 08:10:40 -0400
Good Morning,

Winds are up again after just a couple of days of lower wind days.  No heavy rain showers over the past few days.  Did have a few scattered light showers last night.  This is our dry season so it's important for all of us whether you are on the land or in a boat to conserve.  I know a friend of mine was saying that he had to haul quite a bit of water to his boat via dingy since the docks are completely full this time of year with charter folks.  With no rain those sailors who are live aboard attempt to collect water much like I do here at my house.  I have 2 cisterns that are in good shape right now, and one that is way low.  I normally at this time of year collect the shower water that initially runs cold first into a bucket, with that water if water my container plants.  Hate having that water just go down the drain.  My plants love it.  Today's forecast is for temps to be at 78 degrees, and winds out of the east 12 -16 mph.  Seas will be 1 foot or less. 

This morning looking out over the Sir Francis Drake Channel the skies are dotted with clouds that look more like rain clouds to me than the normally happy puffy Caribbean clouds.  We have filtered sun peeking through. 

Not many sailboats are out yet, mainly working boats are doing the morning runs to Virgin Gorda and elsewhere. I think it might be a good day to hit the beach with a book and catch up with friends. 

For those of you possibly arriving soon for a charter vacation, no hurricanes are on the horizon!!

the Mermaid Gardener

- Warm, Sunny, Perfect Beachin' Weather!
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Thu, 12 Jan 2012 11:41:12 -0500 (EST)
Beautiful sunny day, just perfect for some serious limin' at da beach.
You can't lay on the beach all day drinking rum...
if you don't start in the morning.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Update
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Tue, 10 Jan 2012 19:05:24 -0500 (EST)
Winds are now about 8 knots from the East at East End and the area forecast is for 12 to 14 with a bit of North to them, overnight with seas of 2 to 4 feet.  In the Sir Francis Drake Channel they appear to be at the lower end with just a slow swell to roll da boats:-)
We should see an increase in winds over the next few day, with winds more from the East 14 to 19 knots and it looks like the forecast for Friday could be near 21 knots, with seas moving to the 4 to 6 foot range.  Isolated Showers are in the picture and temps should be the standard, low 80's for highs and mid 70's over night.  Really just about as good of weather as one could hope for... in January!
10 jan.jpg
Look at that glob off the Gulf Coast of the Florida Panhandle:-[  Have friends in the area and they indicate they are getting several inches of rain and it is moving East and as it does the part over the Gulf of Yucatan could be heading our way which may improve our rain chance but make the days far less sunny than we like to see:-\
The moon has been about as full as it can get for several nights.  You walk almost anywhere and not need a light for anything.  Best chance for rain appears to be Saturday night.... we had a couple of short showers today but not much accumulation and I had to do the tank fill thing on da boat:-\.  Got about 30 gallons and had 15 already in Jerry Cans so I should be good for a few days.  Will probably make a run to North Sound over the next week or so and when I do, they have several locations where you can pick up a mooring ball and with the overnight fee of $25 you also get 80 gallons of water and a bag of Ice which in this more remote and higher priced area is a fair deal;-)
I noted in the recent Mermaid Gardner post that she reported the Sneed leaving West End under tow.  I would have loved to see how they got him free from the shore as Hurricane Earl pushed him beam on the beach and one side... think it was Starboard was high and dry and appeared to be several feet into the sand and he has stayed that was for over a year.  Had dinks hanging by single lines looking like pirates that had been hung and left to hang until they fell apart with age.  Hope he finds a good useful place.  I also was told he was moved to Jost Van Dyke but have not seen it myself.... maybe in a couple of weeks, I may head over to take a look.:-)  It has been a while since I've visited Foxy or the Soggy Dollar and I have a few request for Foxy's stuff for a few friends.  I don't think I even have a Cap anymore with the logo:-!
I have been busy on and off da boat for the past couple of weeks but have been attempting to keep an eye out for interesting things.... then it happened.... I was Shanghaied and taken to a distant island!!!:-!  More later!!;-)


- West End pizza journey
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Mon, 9 Jan 2012 17:38:03 -0400
Good Morning,

Friday seemed to be a really good day for hitting the beach down at Smuggler's Cove, having one of the best hot dogs on the beach and just limin.  As I drove down from East End towards the west, this pesky rainstorm kept following me.  My friend and I decided after passing Nanny Cay that it could be a wash out kind of afternoon, no sunshine for this Mermaid. Switched our plans and set off for West End to check out the Jolly Roger restaurant.  Over all the years that I've been here I have never stopped in for food or refreshment.  My friend said "hey a great new experience! And they have good pizza!"  I was all up for getting out of the rain and enjoying a pizza. 

The rain continued as we ordered our lunch and I was glad that we didn't go to the beach.  I'm sure that the no-see-ums would be out in force in the rain.  When that happens the only good place to be is in the ocean.  I rather liked just sitting under cover enjoying my really good pizza! Ordered extra cheese and I think that made the world of difference. 

While we were eating the Leonard Sneed was being towed out to an unknown destination.  The Leonard Sneed from what I've been told was towed over from St.Thomas to Soper's Hole in hopes of making her a dinner restaurant and anchored. That never transpired as it was washed ashore during hurricane Earl. there she has been for several years listing to one side.  It was interesting to see her being towed away to a new destination, maybe a salvage company bought it or she will be recreated into a dining restaurant somewhere else. We heard that it was towed over to Jost.  Also saw one of the Husky towboats come in for pizza from the Jolly Roger!  Great pizza at the Jolly Roger!

Will keep my ear to the cocoa nut telegraph line if a new dining experience is in the works for Jost Van Dyke.


the Mermaid Gardener

leonard sneed towed by husky from sopers.jpg

- Stunning Beauty
  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Mon, 9 Jan 2012 13:19:32 -0500 (EST)
Picture perfect in paradise.  Anegada has hundreds of wrecks for diving and exploring. The reef has claimed many boats. The islanders are quick to salvage anything off a wrecked boat once it is abandoned. I could spend a lifetime at Anegada, the beauty is awesome. White powdery sand beaches for miles and miles. Indeed while out hiking the beaches, I have often come across sun bathers who were working at eliminating their tan lines.
Weather is balmy barefoot days.
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

- Morning sunrise
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Wed, 4 Jan 2012 07:30:24 -0400
Good Morning,

I'm up early and enjoying a cup of tea.  Last night rumors were that we would possibly get some rain, That never occurred and our winds have died down, plus they are out of south east a bit.  Not the usual blowing Christmas winds. Temperature today is forecast to be 82 degrees, right now the winds are 13 mph out of the east.  They have moved the rain to today, we have a 70% chance of rain during the day and 50% tonight.  So for this Mermaid Gardener that means no tread less flip flops, no long island cute dress that I could trip on and holding on to handrails when available.   I'm still mending my ankle from my hydro planing on slippery rainy steps in my tread less flip flops at friends house.  My four step wipe out was pretty dramatic and bruising! Literally!!

Saw sunrise this morning, there was a rain shower over on Virgin Gorda coming towards Trellis Bay but at this point it's not looking like a wash out day. However, you never know of the island the weather can change 

Yesterday I spent a little time out on my patio watching the passing clouds and happened to see a Michelin Man surfing.  He seemed to be waving or really just enjoying the easy trade winds that he was surfing on.  We are still experiencing north swells at 5-7 feet.  I suspect that the surfers are waiting for bigger swells to come in before they hit Apple Bay or Joshia's Bay.  Other than the Michelin man surfing surfers will continue to check the Marine forecast before making the trek out.

the Mermaid Gardener



Mr Michelin Man the surfer!

- Happy New Year! Just a bit of snow here!
  • By mermaid gardener <mermaidgardener at gmail.com>
  • Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2012 10:30:29 -0400
Good Morning and Happy New Year from the BVI!

It's bright sunny day out so far, overnight I had a few hard rain squalls with winds up really high here on the ridge line of the mountain.  I'm sure that I had wind gusts around 23 knots.  The rain was enough to trickle into my cistern and I could hear it flowing in there.  There was one cruise ship that arrived earlier this morning.  I'm thinking that they probably sent them over the Cain Garden Bay for the day.  I may be heading over there myself to spend the afternoon walking the beach and meeting up with friends.

Had a wonderful New Year's Eve with friends down at Nanny Cay, I brought Country style sauerkraut with baby back ribs and polish sausage.  My girl friend and I had talked a couple of weeks ago about my early Christmas up north and that I served my family the same traditional meal for it.  She said OMG does that ever sound good, so we hatched the idea of having pretty much the same meal but having other friends bring some food as well.  Our dinner consisted of Calico Bean soup, black eyed peas, and my friends husband kept calling beans.....LOL....and the Country style sauerkraut and ribs.  For a bit of the Caribbean my wonderful housekeeper had made me a "Black cake" for the holidays, and I brought that.  It was surprising moist, of course there was a whole bottle of libations poured over the cake, and it was very tasty.  A small piece goes a long way!!  At midnight Greenwich mean time we cracked open the champagne and toasted to the New Year as one of my friends was talking to his wife in England we counted down the clock and blew our party horns into the cell phone. 

I do have to tell you that earlier in the evening we had a snow man making contest!    I have to say I don't know what it is with this thing about snow in a can because my friends at Nanny Cay had a can of it.  Right after sunset they opened up the can and made snow.  It was the weirdest thing!   We made a snow man on the bow of the boat!!!  I was a bit worried that we would have to purchase a snow shovel since we were not really sure how much snow came out of that can!!!  No snow shovel or a "Upper scooper"  the snow in the can made just enough for one snow man with eyes!  We all laughed and had such a great time watching the snowman being pressed together and making 2 snow balls for his body!!  So "Wayward" I think you are safe in opening your can of snow without needing to pull out your snow blower out of your boat garage!!  Ha Ha Ha!! Have fun opening your can of snow!

To each and everyone "Happy New Year!!"

the Mermaid Gardener


- Happy New Year
  • By Da Wayward Sailor <dawaywardsailor at aol.com>
  • Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2012 09:23:46 -0500 (EST)
Small Craft Advisory in effect through late Monday night

East Winds for the next few days 15 to 19 knots, and should drop to the 8 to 13 knots by Thursday and have more of a Northeast element.  Seas should run between 5 and 7 feet but build may build to 7 to 9 in North Swells by Thursday.  Scattered Showers are to be expected with a 40% chance today and decreasing over the week.  Temps should be about 84 today with lows of around 75 at night.  Forecast show highs for this next week to be in Low 80's and evening temps about 75 F.
Just a short note today to wish everyone a Great New Year.  Have had a very busy week as I think most have had and similar.  Far too much to eat and probably drink;-) and plan on doing a bit of beach walking later today with a nice large bottle of water and sun screen.
Will share some fun times in the next few days.... but for now, Happy New Year.

  • By DearMissMermaid at aol.com
  • Date: Sun, 1 Jan 2012 06:47:02 -0500 (EST)
Here we are in twenty-twelve 2012
Day break in the BVI
A bit cloudy, but nice and warm.  No snow expected the next few days, so you can forget about snowboarding. Expect some short scattered showers, but hey, that's a great time for a fresh water rinse, for you, your boat, your dog...
A new year!  The dawn of a new error, oops era!
Warm and Sunny Regards,
Dear Miss Mermaid

Author of Hurricanes and Hangovers
Now Available on Kindle too!

for the other blog

Older reports from the BVI have been moved to another page.

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