Maximizer July 2016

First of all, I wasn't completely naked. I just had to go swimming, and the lack of a bathing suit was not going to keep me out of the brilliant blue Bermuda water. The beach was isolated, and I was quite sure that the people on the other beach wouldn't notice that I was wearing my underwear. It was definitely worth it. The azure water was fantastic, the brilliant white sand stuck to my legs like sugar and the air blew warm kisses across my forehead. 

I arrived back in Bermuda this morning, and quickly got to the customs line. “You need to fill out this form again” she commanded. “it needs to be in black or blue and this is purple ink”. I scanned the form, nowhere on it did it mention a pantone range. The form itself was bright pink. I hadn't even realized that the pen was not blue. Some of those blue pens are just more purple than others. Apparently, it worked better when I scribbled out a new form in her light blue/grey pen. I remembered the guy at the Service Ontario desk last year, when I used a bright Cerulean blue pen to fill out their form. “This needs to be filled out in blue ink” he had barked. I stared at him, I looked at the paper, and I looked back at him. “This is blue ink”. I calmly stated. His head exploded, and steam poured from his gaping neck as his newly sprouted dragon head shouted “Not that blue!!” 
The customs guard smiled down at me. “Good girl” she patted my head. “Sit, stand, roll over” she commanded. She said “You need to come with me, I am taking you to the office”. 
There was only one lady in front of me and new customs officer was with me almost immediately. “You are leaving by boat?” she asked. “Yes”, I replied. She drew in her breath, sucking as much air as she could, into her lungs. Her mouth opened, preparing for the difficult speech. I reached out and snapped my visa card on the desk between us. Her mouth closed, and all of her inhaled air came out as laughter. “I like you” she said warmly”, as she charged my $31US “landing fee because I don't have a return ticket”, that everyone argues with.

I went outside, and grabbed the bus into Hamilton. The boat has been moved to the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club, so it is an easy walk from the bus terminal. I met up with Pachi and some of the other people from the boat, who were eating lunch. 

There wasn't much going on today, so I went out for a walk. I was on a mission… ice cream. Annapolis had so many ice cream shops with such good ice cream, and I really wanted another maple walnut cone. Sadly, I discovered, that Bermuda is not an ice cream haven. I settled on a Haagan Daaz bar from the grocery store, which I regretted almost immediately after eating. I decided to walk to the other side of the island. 

It took a couple of hours to walk through the Blackrock pass to the western shore. It was well worth the walk. I walked another 30 minutes to an hour south and came to the Admiralty House. There was a beautiful little cove, and well, with or without a bathing suit, I was going swimming.

I waited about 30 minutes for a bus, and then Michael, a Canadian expat, came and let me know that there were no more buses and offered to drive me back into Hamilton. 

When I got back to the boat, Maria was making Gespacho for us for our trip.

Maria’s Gespacho
1 sweet green pepper
1 large or 2 small cloves of garlic
2-3 inch slice of cucumber (peeled)
fill blender with chopped roma tomatoes
goodly amount of salt 
add 1-1.5 finger heights of olive oil
blend until blender becomes warm

Yes, I was sick the first night. I almost made it, but 20 knots of wind and a Maximizer mixmaster ocean did me in. Luckily I had recovered enough by the time Roque made the absolutely delicious spaghetti carbonara. 

We set up two watch teams, Carol and Herbie and me, and Roque, Alejandro and Jacqui. Most of the way, we had 20 knots of wind and good sailing. We encountered some bad weather part way, and went through some storm systems, but nothing too stressful. 

The first three days are always the most difficult part, while everyone acclimatizes to the boat and to the odd hours and the motion of a new boat.

Carol & Herbie
Pachi Rivero