Monday: Long and Lovely, Lollygagging
Bunch of lollygaggers.
I officially name this group of SwimVacationers
More on that in a minute. But first, a find in the belly of Promenade, in the strata of detritus of charters past. This morning Chad handed me a crumpled, damp piece of paper he found tucked in some corner somewhere. I opened it carefully and found Hopper's notes for our welcome and safety talk from one of our past SwimVacations. This whole shebang is Hopper's Big Idea, and I know he feels so proud to know it works, and works well, even when he's stuck in the cold of Maine. Finding the note was grounding, and made me feel like he's out here with us this week. Hopper we miss you!
Great Harbour of Peter Island was spectacular this morning. Clear as glass. Flat as a pool (no black line). Reefs teeming with silversides, pelicans poised for breakfast. So rich with life even our fastest swimmers stopped to take it all in.
This group has such a great vibe already. No decompression time needed - they are ON VACATION. We had a lovely leisurely 2 mile swim, and conditions were so prime in the harbor that I decided to jump in with SCUBA and camera when we got back to the boat to record our stroke videos. One at a time our swimmers made three passes over me as I recorded them from below. Later tonight, Carter will break it all down for everyone, show us where we can be more efficient in the water.
We climbed back a board and many went for second round of breakfast. Usually I give our guests a "next two hours" talk, so they know where they are headed. Today, I forgot. We got under weigh and this crowd is so chill, not a single person even asked where we were going. Books came out, naps were taken. Tom fished to no avail (keep at it guy!). Everyone just enjoyed the hour of sunshine and sparkling, calm seas.
Tom F. tries his hand at fishing. Sara and Charles found home on the trampoline. Natalie did too.
Ah the Baths of Virgin Gorda. A little early in the trip for us to make this stop but the weather was so great we couldn't resist. We anchored away from a sea of boats atthis popular spot. Had a great lunch with amazing sandwiches - not sure where Rebecca is hiding a deli in that little galley - and briefed on our plan to swim into Devil's Bay for a fantastic walk through the granite boulders. Most people dinghy in to the beach. We are Swimmers. We swim. As luck would have it, the crowds had abated by the time we hit the beach - there was little traffic as we climbed and curved along this well worn path.
I love this location for photographs of course, and made everyone spot in my favorite portrait spot.
We got back from the walk (also via swim) and most of us just stayed and played in the beautiful water. Diving and rolling, lolling. Me with camera in hand of course, unable to resist photographing Kendra (part dolphin), Alina (experienced at modeling for me underwater) and our Mama-to-be Lizzie, and her beautiful baby bubble.
Kendra, Alina and Lizzie.
We climbed aboard but not for long. Our afternoon swim was a 3/4 mile course through the boulders by sea. Curves and turns, shooshing and swooshing between rocks and reefs. Ending at my favorite beach in the world. Classic SwimVacation group pic - Click.
Chris leaps in for our afternoon swim. Group picture on the world's most amazing beach.
Chad picked us up in Promenade and we continued north up to Mountain Point, where we will spend the night. We feasted on nachos (ever watch piranhas attack?) and margaritas and were treated to a remarkably dramatic sunset (cue sail boat, stage left).
Darkness fell and there was pasta with alfredo sauce to be eaten. Duty done, and done well. Save room for the cheesecake with berry compote.
After dinner, we piled into the cozy salon while Carter did a skillful job at stroke video review. He knows his stuff, and will be available to his fellow guests for in-situ pointers. As it turns out, upon review, I've just got to tighten everything up. Thanks Carter.
Carter - His heart will go on and on….
All told we logged about 5 1/2 hours and 3 1/2 miles in the water today. Not bad for a bunch of lollygaggers. Tonight, they're soggy-gaggers, all tucked away in their beds. I'm the last swimmer standing, but not for long…….