March 18 - Welcome Aboard Day

A Watery Welcome






An unexpected cloudburst that kicked in right at noon was no match for the enthusiastic group of travelers waiting for us at the dock. Heather and Felix shuttled over to collect our eight SwimVacation guests from their meeting place at Village Cay marina. They attempted to wait out the worst of the storm on land, but after a while, decided to brave the elements to motor back to the Promenade where Fitzy and I were waiting to help them clamber aboard with their luggage.

In quick succession, we welcomed Dan and Jori, Trudie and Mary, Debbie, Walt, Carter and Janine to the SwimVacation family. As soon as all were safely aboard, we got underway to Little Harbour for our first swim. Lunch, a quick orientation around the boat, a thick slather of sunscreen, and we all jumped off the SV Promenade and into an aquamarine dream.
Fitzy kicks off Swimvacation with a traditional stern line swim, and also a bit of flare. 77 year old Trudi is our first SwimVacationer in the water! Go Trudi!
Calm and warm at just about 80 degrees, the water rinsed off the plane funk and stress of daily life and introduced us to how good life can be when one relaxes, swims and repeats.
The group quickly broke up into three rough packs with Fitz, Carter and Dan charging off in front, aiming to hit the far side of the secluded harbor first. A few hundred feet behind, I swam with Walt, Janine, and “Mooching” Mary who was looking for a draft ride during part of the swim, which we were all too happy to provide. Taking in the sights a bit further back were Heather, Trudie, and Jori.
All the swimmers did amazingly well on their first jaunt, completing circuits of one to two-and-a-half miles in their first foray into Caribbean waters.
Carter begins to unwind, Dan gives cocktail hour some fantastic background music, and Jenine decides she likes it here.
After the swim, we motored over to Great Harbor and settled in for the night, starting with a Dark ‘n Stormy cocktail hour followed by a delicious dinner. While we were tidying away the dinner dishes, two tarpon and a small squid approached the Promenade. The tarpon circled slow and lazy in the shadow of the boat, while the squid danced at the surface, pink and bug-like. A sea bird dive-bombed the surface in pursuit of silversides, all while we watched in amazement. This impromptu wildlife show was the perfect set-up for Heather’s slide show on BVI sea life. Her exquisite images and informative talk put us all at ease and piqued our curiosity. Who knows which critters we’ll see tomorrow while we’re out there, but I think some of us are hoping to catch sight of a spotted eagle ray or more of those incredible squid.
With that, we bid good-night to the first, crisp, perfect day of SwimVacation. Tomorrow’s early swim in Great Harbor may yet offer up more of those fantastic critters we learned about tonight.
- Elaine