Monday, April 23, 2007

Thursday 19th April

Isla Sur
Aves de Barlavento

11 56.755 N
67 25.940 W

Many happy returns Carmel, hope that you have a good year.

After a good night sleep we decided to go exploring a bit more. The trusty dink was launched and off we went around to the first bay that we had bypassed on our way to this anchorage. We had noticed a cut through the mangroves and thought we would go and see what was hidden down there. The water was a bit murky; full no doubt of bird crap and feathers. It was also quite shallow so we could only get so far up into the cut. Again the trees were full of birds, loads of boobys, a few herons, frigate birds and pelicans. Only the pelicans took flight when we got close enough to take photos, all the rest seemed to be unaware that we might present a danger to them. Once we had exhausted the photo opportunities in the cut we headed back out and a bit further down to where the lighthouse sat. We beached the dinghy and walked along the beach where we found a small ? not finished ?derelict building. It had been built of coral and the walls were very straight sided almost as if someone had put them together and then cut them with a saw to make them straight. There was a window shaped opening in one side and the view looking out of it was fabulous – an artist would have loved it. There was also a small shrine or grave – we couldn’t decide which just outside of the building, marked by a whole lot of conch shells. The lighthouse was ultra modern – a steel tower painted with red and white stripes, with a solar driven light on the top; not as pretty as the older types of lighthouses but at least it worked! There was little else to see on the beach so we then dinked in the opposite direction and made our way to the reef. We found a small patch of sand to anchor the dink to and then donned our snorkeling gear to explore the reef. It was a spectacular reef, not very deep – perhaps 18 inches at the deep parts. Plenty of live coral, mostly brain coral and a huge amount of tropical fish live d in this area. We saw some of the smallest fish I’ve ever seen and if we had had the camera I’m sure we would have got some fantastic pictures as you could get reasonably close to them. The sun was quite hot and as we began to burn we decided to head back to the boat for the rest of the day. We spent a lazy afternoon doing very little except prepare food for the evening meal – dinner was on our boat so we fired up the bar b que for ham steaks and pineapple, The dinners are becoming very creative as we are running out of all sorts of things, we really will have to do a big shop when we get to Bonaire.
Photos of Derelict building and Mangrove tree from camera of Gypsy palace



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