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Monday, 28 November 2016

October-November 2016

After our summer in the UK we arrived back in Trinidad to our home aboard S/Y Piano. I must say she looked a sorry sight in the dark! We slept the first night comfortably in an apartment at Power Boats then went for our first inspection very early the next morning.
   While we were away it had been found that the hull also needed drying out and after contact with Ghislaine we went ahead and had it stripped right back. This has taken quite a while with liquid stripper, then sanding, preparation and finally new layers.


Andy, who also doubles as a phone technician! Awesome.

Meanwhile, Alan and his son Brandon have done a superb job refurbishing the tired Fridge freezer- it looks like new again! As do the toe-rails and (wood below?) Another minor job since we returned was to seat the new Navigation screen in the old hole, Alan’s team have helped with this too.
Abdu the varnisher has completed his work on the saloon table which now has protected fiddles which will not scratch!
Busy Bee and various boaters have relieved us of many treasures of the bilge. (i.e. items packed far below and never used or just surplus to requirements.) We now have a modern car radio for the music center, so I am trying to amalgamate all the work done before we set sail. I had digitised the old Cassettes and L.P’s, Malcolms Reel to reel recordings and started to produce MP3’s while still at Darby Green. This has paid off big time, but there are still many CD's to finish. Meanwhile chaos rules with with the different operating systems being used, Windows 10, I-tunes and Linux not to mention all the formats to contend with lets not go there! To register the App on the radio I had to invent a car the same age as Piano, these do not exist! It also appears that the App can only be used while on line (and this never happens while we are on passage!) so technology has still to come up to Pianos standards. Plus after all that hard work it turns out that the new car player cannot cope with the latest stick it does not have sufficient memory! So back to the original MP3’s which I made all those years ago. Malcolm is also making new folders to cope.
Life on the hard has been a depressing trauma apart from the highlights of eating out with friends. We had S/Y Minnie B (Phil and Norma) round for a poor excuse of Chilli- and it was all devoured even without the kidney beans -. We also ate shark & bake at the Wheelhouse Pub on a Saturday and either pork ribs, rib eye steak, or fish on a Tuesday. 

Chris and Sharon invited us and Minnie B over to S/Y Quicksilver for the large Moon show. No-one was particularly impressed with it, but the Chicken Mediterranean with garlic bread was delicious- thanks Sharon.
Kay has finished the new dinghy chaps which look awesome, and fit perfectly. She has also made a cover for the outboard and a new one for the cockpit table. Malcolm has been busy putting a fluorescent paint layer onto the back of the dinghy for greater visibility at night. All the security padlocks are fully functioning and ready for use.
Shopping always has to be done but one exception to the household stores was a trip to visit Debbie at Rumpa swimwear, to pick up my new swimming suits. I took Norma and Sharon along and we had a smoothie at elevenses these are made to order on the spot and sooo yummy.

Maybe 20 plus blenders and racks of fruit shows these Smoothies are in demand.

of course Debbie mentioned the Christmas Bazaar at Movietown and after a quick word with Jesse we arranged one of his maxi’s to transport us there and back.
This is the Caribbean version of the many that mum has been making for Christmas.

 The whole Island sends crafts people to show their goodies, food, drink, pastries, knitted goods, chopping boards, jewellery, handmade soaps and candles, jigsaws from Tobago, all in an air conditioned conference center! We also had coffee in a swanky coffee house…

Plus ice cream which was filled with any topping after being thrown across the counter and caught in a tub! The whole of Movietown hummed with Christmas cheer.

We were also invited over to Gasparee Island to Kay and Collins’ house, first for a swim at the beach, then for a jacuzzi at their home followed by a tour of the gardens which even has a blow hole down to the sea.
Shady Beach
What a garden feature eh?
Private Bay too

 To top it all afternoon tea with home made cheesecake and summer berries. This was all a welcome treat after all the time aboard doing various jobs to fill our time.

The end of the month soon came with another invite to dinner aboard S/Y’Minnie B’. This time a delicious curry with chutneys from the Bazaar, very yummy! Finally back to the Queens’ Hall Auditorium for another performance by the Trinidad and Tobago Youth Philharmonic and Singers for a tribute to Earth Wind and Fire. It was as awesome as the classical rendition last year. Plus the transport (driven by Keiran ) was both full and buzzing. Yet again a marvellous trip organised by Jesse James (Members only Taxi Service) . What would we do without him around??
I’m pleased that November is over, I expect all my avid readers in the UK are wondering when they will see Piano afloat ans enjoying life on the Ocean Blue. It can’t be soon enough for us!
More next month before the Christmas rush…