Canouan: Picking up the Sailboat

Finesse - our boat for the 10-day sail 
We flew out of Barbados on Sunday, February 24th on LIAT and after a brief layover in Grenada, arrived on Canouan.  The airport is small, yet quaint and efficient.  There were only six of us getting off at this stop, so it was a quick one. Canouan is a small island (about 4.5 miles sq) with about 1200 inhabitants.  One-third of the island is a private resort owned by Trump.  Thankfully there is a flight here or most people would never get to see it.

The charter company had arranged for us to be picked up from the airport.  When we landed, we called and they arrived about 8 minutes later.  We got to our accommodation, the Tamarind Beach Hotel at Grand Bay - this is also the Moorings base for the Grenadines.   We were greeted with a lovely glass of chilled fruit juice and were promptly checked into our room.  Our room had a view of the beach and was a short walk to the beach restaurant.  As we were only here one night, we didn't get too much opportunity to explore, but did our best.

Our room
View from our balcony
Hotel lobby
After a refreshing nap (yes, I am a napper, no judgements please...) we walked into the town for a couple of supplies (aka drinks and snacks).  Once you leave the resort, you know you are on a small island.  You see the usual small island Caribbean wildlife roaming the streets - dogs, chickens, goats (no worries - they keep to themselves).  After work hours,  locals were liming outside a local grocery - some playing dominoes and some a pick up game of cricket - a typical small town, very similar to many in other parts of the world.  There were a few stores and between them there would be enough provisions available for us to stock the boat for a couple of days.

A lucky find was a deli at the resort, which was run by a Sicilian gentleman named Angelo.  He had the most amazing selection of imported meats and cheeses.  He also had a great selection of pasta, sauces, fresh bread, salads - a foodie paradise.  We picked up some Italian mortadella (versus an American one that he also had - after a brief lesson on the difference, I made the appropriate choice - it was delicious), chorizo salame, provolone and smoke mozzarella.  He also sold 5 litre boxes of white wine (for about $68 EC - $25).  Now, if you are on a boat, in a bay with no will appreciate this find.  Take the bag out of the box and place it in your cooler, nestled with ice.  Small pleasures.

We had dinner at the resort that evening - they put on a BBQ buffet.  Pretty good spread - lots of local treats - including some tender BBQ'd Caribbean lobster.  One of the best things was stumbling across a ceramic BBQ that was covered in small blue tiles.  It was beautiful - I've never seen anything like it.  It seemed to produce results similar to other ceramic BBQ's and the smell of charcoal that was coming from it made me want to fire up our BGE the minute we got home.
I love this ceramic BBQ!
After breakfast the following morning, the boys headed over to the Moorings office to get the final briefing on the boat.  (We were concerned the boat was going to be late because we were picking it up in Canouan, having had Moorings sail it up there from Grenada for us - as we were doing a one-way sail).  We girls got a ride into town.  Walking in the cool evening breeze is one thing.  Faced with a choice of walking in scorching hot mid morning sun vs air conditioning...we chose an air conditioned ride.   I always love shopping for food in new places - getting a sense of what the locals eat, what is available, and what their diet might be like.  There was a small road side stand that was selling fresh produce.  They get many of their food stuff by plane from St. Vincent.  Shopping for sailing is very similar to shopping for our trailer during camping season.  Keeping in mind you have probably only two burners, a small oven and a BBQ, you would be surprised how many things you can make.  We prepared for a few meals - an evening of risotto, a pasta night, some chicken pelau and BBQ burgers.  After stopping at about three different stores, we were able to pack our haul into the van and head back to the hotel for checkout.  Moorings graciously transported our stuff in the dinghy, over to the boat and unpacked all the food for us.

On the boat - our room
Lori & Rob's Room

Beach at resort
Beach at resort
We got on the boat at noon, settled our belongings into our births, changed into some cooler clothing and prepared for our launch on Finesse - our home for the next 10 days.  We left Grand Bay around 13h20 and sailed north for Mustique.  We arrived just under 3 hours later (we took our time - winds were fair).  We dropped anchor, then dinghy'd ashore for a visit to the famous Basil's Bar for some drinks.  A busy spot and popular with the yacht crowd.  We took a peek at the dinner menu, decided that for what they were offering, at those prices, we could have a delicious dinner on board, and we did.

The next morning before our departure, the boys went ashore for some supplies (Clamato, ice, bread) and then we were off.

Brunch - Caesars and BLT's - the produce was amazingly fresh.

Next stop:  Bequia and Mac's Lobster Pizza!

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