Fat Virgin Not So Pregnant

Trip Start Feb 11, 2010
Trip End Apr 04, 2010

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Flag of Virgin Islands British  ,
Thursday, April 1, 2010

033010 - 033110 @Sea: We have 2 @Sea days to Virgin Gorda, BVI.  Have learned we will be bypassing, not only Jost Van Dyke, BVI but also Tortola, BVI due the previous high winds & currents going from San Blas to Aruba.  It was nice to have few obligations or activities for a change as we sailed non-stop across the Caribbean Sea. 

At around 16:30 on 3/30, there was a better-late-than-never 'Crossing' picture taking session for passengers who had traversed the Pacific.  We 'Crossers' all wore our Star Clippers complimentary 'Crossing' shirts.  Wild Claudia from Argentina wore only her shirt with a belt!  Caliente!  Only Claudia could pull that off so sexily!

We went on the very interesting Engine Room Tour on 3/31.  The main ship's V12 diesel engine is rated at 1,360 horsepower.  There are two auxiliary V8 diesels, one always running for generator (500 Kilowatts) and AC, one for backup.  There is also an electric motor that can be tied into the main drive shaft to run the ship at 5 nautical mph in emergencies.  The on-board desalination plant can produce over 50 tons of fresh water per day! 

040110 Virgin Gorda, BVI:  Today is Mom’s 92nd birthday!!  Woke up early.  On deck at 6:00 to see awesome St. Croix, USVI passing on starboard and beautifully unspoiled St. Johns, USVI on port.  Made unexpected turn into Tortola, BVI and anchored.  Albert, a charming, elderly, retired, eye surgeon from England whom I had met at dinner, had a heart attack on-board and was being evacuated to a hospital via Tortola.  No word as to his prognosis.  Soon after, we raised anchor and headed for Virgin Gorda, BVI. 

We arrived at beautiful Virgin Gorda around 9:30 and anchored in the North Sound near the high-end, 5-star Bitter End Yacht Club.  The island (aka 'Fat Virgin’) was named by Christopher Columbus in 1492 because of the shape of the island’s silhouette.  After being tendered ashore, we boarded open-air buses and headed to ‘The Baths’ at the opposite south end of the island.  ‘The Baths’ are a bunch of huge, natural, volcanic, granite boulders strewn about the land and into the Caribbean, forming many grottoes.  The hike down into the boulders was much more difficult than expected.  You have to walk through very narrow and low passages, up and around huge boulders, and through shallow pools.  And the best path was not always obvious.  There were dead ends or places where only small folks could get through.  Kids were having a blast.  I am sure they were laughing at the adults trying to negotiate the arduous paths.  We took our snorkel gear to swim around the boulders.  Just awesome!  The warm, crystal clear, graduated turquoise waters of the Caribbean were at their most beautiful ever.  Surprisingly, there were not very many corals or fish.  I found more fauna when snorkeling farther out into deeper water but the surge was greater.  I was being swept out to sea.  It took quite an effort to swim back to shore against the current.  Thankfully, we walked back on a different, much easier path, albeit hot as hell, especially on the feet.  We celebrated our successful traverse with rum punch at an open-air restaurant near the head of the path.  Boarding the bus for our journey back to the ship's tender, we stopped three times at scenic overlooks.  Beautiful vistas and views of neighboring islands were around every corner.  The roads were in great shape but very steep with sharp corners.

We returned back to the ship via tender and soon raised anchor and headed out of the North Sound and past billionaire owner of Virgin Airlines, Richard Branson's 74 acre Necker Island (his Balinese-style villa can house 28 guests in 10 bedrooms for only $53,000 USD/day).  Later, we toasted Captain's Dinner with the ship's champagne.  Will be at St. Barth tomorrow.
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bone on

I miss Doctor Claudia. Beautiful person. Hey, if you notice I had a diet Coke while the rest of you had the rum punch. Ha.

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