Charlotte Couple
Location: Charlotte (...duh) NC
May 2 - 16, 2009

I'll start with some photos. Trip reports will follow. We had an awesome two weeks in Abaco, May 2-16.


Sea Oats - Fowl Cay Ledge

H.T Light House taken with a zoom lens from M-O-W. - Tilloo Cay

- Man-O-War Beach -

Brain Coral - Sea Fan

Tang - Feather Duster

Charlotte Couple (Debby & Lat) - Rest of the Gang at Nippers (both bytaken by our friend Lisa)

May 2-3

Our flights were relatively uneventful, and we arrived in Marsh Harbour a couple hours earlier than expected, so we went to Curlytails for the traditional Grouper Burger with ice-cold Kalik, and settled into island time. I bought a case of Kaliks to take with us from Tupps, and then we took a cab to the ferry for the 4:00 trip to Man-O-War Cay.

Samantha from Waterways Rentals radioed the ferry and said they would meet us with our 18.5-foot Albury Brothers rental boat, so as we unloaded the luggage (too much AGAIN!), Jay pulled up, and we put our bags aboard. We went to their office to finish the paperwork, and Samantha took us to the Harbor Store for a few groceries. Jay met us there with the boat, and we went to our dock.

It was warm in the cottage (no air conditioning), so we unpacked a few things, and went for a walk on the beach, where we could feel the ESE breeze. Then we returned to the cottage, sat on the deck enjoying the sunset, then read until bedtime.

The next morning we got up about 8:30 and ate breakfast on the deck. Then we got ready for church. One of the nice things about attending church there is that we have really gotten to know some of the residents of MOW over the years, as well as other visitors. As we walked to church, we met a couple from Jacksonville, FL, who we saw several times during our stay, as well as friends of theirs, the Albertsons, artists who live on their sailboat in the Eastern Harbor. We had met them last year.

After church we changed into swimsuits and headed to Nippers for the Sunday Pig Roast. Actually, we went to Grabbers first, and ended up eating lunch there, before walking to Nippers. We had fun there, watching the party and drinking some frozen Nippers. There was plenty to watch, and Debby danced a little, too. One poor guy from SC was so drunk, I don’t know how he was still standing. We talked to him, and he said he had drunk 8 Nippers, and saw him drink another and at least one beer later. He was leaving the next day on a boat with his friends, but I’m sure that was a rough crossing for him, in spite of the calm conditions!

We stayed til near sunset, then returned to MOW for a quiet evening.

Ferry Dock View - Arriving Grabbers

- Grabbers -

Day 4

The Cruisers Net reported that the weather will be sunny, low 80’s and calm winds, ESE 5-10 pretty much all week! As we ate breakfast on the deck I took a photo of our boat and dock on my Blackberry, and emailed it to our friend Lisa, who would be joining us for the second week. She sent a one-word reply, “Turds”.

We decided to hang around MOW and see some of the folks there, and just enjoy the island for the day. We got some sun on the deck, and then walked around the settlement. There’s a new gift shop near the hardware, called Sammie Boy’s Gift Shop, owned by Sammie Albury and his wife. We talked to them for awhile, and seeing his conch horns for sale, it reminded us that years ago he had given conch horns to our Godson and a friend he had met, and taught them how to blow them. Really nice guy. If you go there, ask him about his boat, and how it got the name “Thrice Mine”. It’s an interesting story.

We picked up a couple things at the Painted Fish Gift Shop, and then returned to the cottage. We went for a long walk on the beach, and found a lot of nice sea glass and limpet shells. It was during this walk that I noticed the view of the Hope Town Lighthouse through a grove of palm trees, which I’ve posted a photo of already.

Later we walked to the Dock ‘n Dine restaurant for dinner, where we ran into Lettie and her husband, the couple we’d met walking to church. They invited us to join them for dinner, and we had a really nice time talking to them.

The menu has changed since the Dock n Dine opened last year. Then it was pretty expensive, but they’ve made it much more affordable, and the food is delicious. We each had grilled dolphin fingers and a side of peas n rice. Debby had a half-order, and I had a full order. The total for that, plus iced tea came to $26.

“Thrice Mine”

May 5

We had bought fresh cinnamon rolls from Lola on Monday, so we enjoyed them for breakfast on the deck, as usual. It’s a really peaceful view of the harbor, through foliage of palms, gumelemi and hibiscus, and a great way to start each day.

We’ve read Dr. Ralph’s description of spending the days at Pelican Cay, so we decided to see it for ourselves. It was an easy ride down there, and as we anchored off the beach, another boat did the same nearby. I wanted to explore the island, and see the view from the hilltop, and one man from the other boat told me what was up there. It is the ruins of a house that someone built a number of years ago, now just a concrete foundation and the remains of the cisterns and steps. Apparently, the owner had just finished construction and moved in not long before disaster struck. When he left, the propane was left on, and the entire house exploded. The guy was so upset he just abandoned it. Spectacular view from there, looking south toward Little Harbour.

On the Atlantic side, there are some formations in the rocky coastline, and a great view of the sounthern tip of Tilloo Cay. In some of the limestone depressions, waves have deposited water into little pools, and when it evaporates, it leaves salt crystals in the bottom.

We wanted to eat at Cracker P’s, but found they were closed, so we headed into Hope Town, and ate at Cap’n Jack’s instead. Love their coconut fried grouper! After lunch we reserved a key lime pie at Vernons, then went to the Reef Bar at HTHL. Talked to Gary while we had drinks there, then picked up our pie and returned to MOW, where we spent a quiet evening reading.

- Pelican Cay Ruins -

Wednesday, May 6

Very nice weather again, and we lazed around trying to decide where to go that day. When we finally got going, the first thing we did was walk down to the marina, in search of Alan Brown, who had told us he would arrive on the 5th. We found him working on his 30-foot Hunter sloop “Intuition”, and introduced ourselves. Very nice guy, but in a bit of a jam, since his batteries had gone dead, and wouldn’t hold a charge. We had a nice chat with him, and invited him to come by the cottage anytime for a cold beer. We also agreed to give him a ride to Nippers the next Sunday for the pig roast.

When we returned to the cottage, Debby noticed a couple on the road peering at the cottage intently, but she didn’t recognize them as anyone we’d met. A few minutes later the bell rang, and a very nice British couple, James and Allison, introduced themselves. They were living aboard a 27-foot Cape Dory sloop, and were checking out possible accommodations for some friends who will be visiting them later in the year (27-foot sailboats are a little tight for 4 people to live aboard). We were happy to show them around, and enjoyed hearing about their experiences living aboard for extended periods of each year. We told them we also have a 27-footer that we weekend on at the lake.

After they left we decided to walk north on the “Queens Highway”, and later we would run down to Cracker P’s to eat. As we walked, we noticed that the shallow sandbank near the “lobster rocks” on the west side of MOW was almost completely exposed, due to the extremely low tide. (The full moon was fast approaching). We waded out to see what we could find, and ended up with a bunch of nice sand dollars and sea biscuits.

As we approached the “narrows”, we stashed our treasure on a ledge, so we could recover it on our way back, since it was quite a handful to carry. Then we walked toward the nice little picnic shelter that overlooks the sandy beach there. That’s when we noticed James and Allison approaching us in their red inflatable dinghy, so we stopped to speak to them again. Their boat was anchored nearby, and they had dinghied in to see if we wanted to sail with them for a couple hours. We jumped all over that, and the four of us carefully settled ourselves in, and off we went.

That was a special surprise, and a wonderful unexpected afternoon adventure. James offered me the tiller, and we went out through the NMOW passage, beyond the reef into the Atlantic. Our first ocean sailing experience! The swells were gentle, in a nice steady breeze and we got a really nice view of MOW from a perspective we had never seen before. Finally we came about, back through the cut and turned southeast in the Sea of Abaco. We went to the other end of MOW, before returning to their anchorage. That Cape Dory is a lot of fun to sail, and we really appreciated the chance to do that.

We collected our shells, and abandoned our walk north. We spoke to some people who were setting up the shelter for a birthday party, and as we walked back toward the settlement, the man we had spoken to came by and offered us a ride in his cart. His name is Mark, and he and his wife live on MOW. She suffered a massive stroke 5 years ago, and he was telling us about the book he has written about their experiences during that time. He is still searching for a publisher, but the story is titled “Love Beyond All Reason”. Really nice man, and he dropped us off right at our gate.

We enjoyed a cold beer on the deck, watching the lizards and birds all around the cottage grounds, and about 7:30 we walked to the Dock n Dine for another good dinner. We ran into Alan Brown there, and chatted with him awhile. After dinner we read until bedtime, our usual evening routine, and talked about how fortunate we were that we had taken that afternoon walk! Definitely a great day.

Man-O-War Sandbank - Allison James & Debbie

-Sea Dog-

Thursday, May 7

Ate breakfast on the deck, after listening to the Cruisers Net, and then we made plans for the day. We love that about Abaco vacations, no pre-set agenda. Just do what we want, where we want, when we want to.

Our plan was to spend some time on the beach at Fowl Cay, and then finally eat at Cracker P’s, which we’d not done in two previous days. The weather was calm, and we anchored easily just off the beach on the west side of Fowl Cay. It gets shallow there at low tide, so we anchored off a little more than usual.

We had the cay to ourselves, though quite a few boats were out at the reef. We got some work on our suntans, and as the tide dropped we waded on the sandy spit that became exposed. There were lots of Sunrise Tellin shells and a few sand dollars. We kept our eyes on the sky over Great Abaco, as a pretty good rainstorm was pouring down just north of Marsh Harbour. They had only had two days of rain there all year before this, so we knew they were happy to see it.

As the clouds built more toward us, we loaded the boat and headed south, just as a fine mist began to fall. We ran out of the rain in about a minute, though, and it never rained on MOW, Elbow or Lubbers Quarters that day.

At Cracker P’s we had a good lunch, with smoked fish dip, of course, and a couple shotguns. Met a family from North Carolina there, and had a nice conversation with them. The place was relatively quiet, but there is always an awesome view from there.

After about an hour and a half, we went back to MOW and lazed around til sunset. A chorus of conch horns announced the setting sun, and it seemed like they just kept going, from the harbor and the settlement. We walked down to the Harbor Store and found Sammie Albury blowing two conch horns, each with a different pitch, and each time he was answered by other horns aboard boats in the harbor. We accused him of disturbing the peace, and talked to him and some other local men, as they did their evening ritual of feeding the “pet” fish that gather there every day at that time.

We walked on a ways, and Sammie drove by in his golf cart and asked if we wanted some dolphin. They had caught a bunch the day before, and he said he’d have it for us at his store the next day. We were beginning to feel very lucky, since our caretaker, Redith Sweeting had already put about 5 pounds of dolphin that HE had caught in our freezer. We were going to eat like kings this week!

- Fowl Cay -

Scotland Cay with Storm a brewin’

Friday, May 8

This was the day our friend Lisa was arriving from Charlotte. I listened to the Cruisers Net, which was interrupted by a widespread power outage. Pattie was able to continue when her generator kicked in, but many of the businesses all around Abaco were unable to report in.

Of course, when the power is out we have no running water, so we ate breakfast and hoped it would come back on, so we could take showers soon. Debby finally decided to go down and take a dip off our dock, even though it’s salt water. She did the same thing last year, and immediately the power came back on, so I teased her as she got out of the water, saying now I could go up to the cottage and take my shower. Sure enough, the power was on when we got to the cottage! Now we know the secret to shortening the Batelco power outages. Just have Debby jump in the harbor!

We both showered, and left for Marsh Harbour about 11:30. Lisa’s flight was due in at 1:35, and we wanted to shop a little before she arrived. It was a very smooth ride over, and we tied up at Curlytails’ dock. We went down to the usual shops, Conch Pearl Gallery, the Sand Dollar Shoppe, John Bull and Wrackers. We were sorry to see that Wrackers has closed the whole gallery section of the store. It is apparent that the Abaco economy is hurting this year. We contributed a little, buying a gold chain from Abaco Gold for Debby as a Mothers Day gift.

Lisa’s flight from West Palm was delayed an hour, so we stopped for some ice cream at Matilda’s Snack Shop and ate it at one of the outdoor tables there. We talked to a couple from McLean, VA, who were about to do a crewed charter on a catamaran, and then we returned to Curlytails. Lisa arrived pretty soon, and we all ate grouper burgers and drank cold Kaliks, before heading back to MOW.

It was a hot afternoon, and the girls went to get some groceries (air conditioned store), while I picked up the dolphin from Sammie’s Gift Shop. Sammie was extremely generous, and probably gave us 5 pounds of fish or more.

Later we walked up the beach to the Narrows, where quite a few local families had brought their young kids to play on the beach. We enjoyed the breeze and views there, and then walked back to the cottage. We ate dinner at the Dock n Dine, where we saw Alan Brown again. We made arrangements to pick him up Sunday after church for the Pig Roast.

I was tired when we got back, so I went to bed, and as I slept the girls talked and sneaked some of the key lime pie for dessert, never bothering to ask if I wanted some.

Beach Walk, Man-O-War Dock

Saturday, May 9 – FULL MOON!

I walked to Lola’s for some fresh cinnamon buns, then listened to another perfect forecast on the Cruisers Net. We decided to go back up to Fowl Cay for the beach, and maybe snorkel on the reef. As it turned out, we didn’t snorkel because it clouded up some around midday, with another big storm over on Great Abaco. Before that, though, we had plenty of bright sunshine, and I got some good photos from under an overhanging ledge at low tide.

When we arrived we could see that someone had recently cleaned a bunch of conch on the beach there. A big group arrived later that day in 3 other boats, one of them loaded with more conch, which they also cleaned there. I hope they weren’t taking them from Fowl Cay Preserve. At least they were Bahamians, so hopefully they know what is and isn’t allowed there.

We ate a picnic lunch on the beach, and explored all along the rocky edges of the cay. A local guy brought his boat very close to the rocks, and then used a chisel to harvest some Chitons for dinner. Those are the little crustaceans you find plastered to the rock ledges on every cay. The locals call them “curbs”, and some say they are tastier than conch.

Fowl Cay

Chitons - Cooling off

- F u l l M o o n P a r t y -
(at Cracker P’s)

We hung out there until about 4:00. When we returned, I called Capt. Plug to arrange a 6:30 pickup at our dock, for the ride over to Cracker P’s Full Moon Party. This was the first one we’ve been to, and it was fun.

Capt. Plug and his wife Debbie picked us up right on time, and we got there just as the buffet line opened, so we were able to get prime seats at the bar, overlooking the deck.
LOTS of people kept arriving, and the dock space was filled quickly. Cracker P’s arranged to have the large dock next door available for the overflow for this party, and it was a good thing they did!

We met Peter, from Hilton Head, and Tom & Beth from Baltimore, who had just arrived from the Exumas and Eleuthera on their 45-foot Corbin cutter. They were all a lot of fun, and we saw more of them in subsequent days around Abaco. The deck below us became a very active dance floor. We had a great time, and finally left about midnight. It was really nice riding home under the full moon on a beautiful clear night, and Captain Plug did a great job. He and Debbie were a lot of fun, too.

Sunday, May 10 – Mothers Day

We went to church, which was a special Mothers Day service, and then went back to the cottage to get ready for the Nippers Pig Roast. Unfortunately, Alan Brown called to say his knee was giving him a problem, so he couldn’t go with us.

Weather was perfect again, and the ride up to Great Guana Cay was easy. We tied up among many boats at the Nippers dock, and were taken directly to our destination by the friendly neighborhood Nippermobile.

There was a huge crowd there, and since no tables that had shade were available, we ate inside. While we were eating some of that great barbecue, Peter, the guy from Hilton Head that we had met at the Full Moon Party, came over and sat with us. We ended up hanging out with him for a few hours, til he had to leave. He has a house near Tahiti Beach, and invited us to come over for lunch on Tuesday. Very nice guy. In the photo below you can see Debby’s expression when he told her he had already had 5 frozen Nippers.

We moved up to the top deck for awhile, and before long Tom & Beth came up there and joined us. It was like a Full Moon reunion! They were a lot of fun, and I think Beth danced with half the people there! When a table opened up by the dance floor, we grabbed it, and had a great time watching all the dancing and partying. We got on the dance floor ourselves, especially when they played “All Summer Long” by Kid Rock. When they played YMCA, even people swimming in the ocean got into the act, as another photo shows.

Great party music all afternoon, but finally Johnny had to turn down the volume, and the crowd dispersed. We walked out with Tom & Beth, and they gave us a brief tour of their sailboat. That 45’ Corbin is a beauty, with lots of room inside and out. They gave us a shot of Bahamian Royal (Royale?) Rum, which tastes like butter rum. Delicious!

We returned to MOW shortly before dark, and spent the evening talking and laughing about the party.

Monday, May 11

With (surprisingly) no ill effects lingering from the party at Nippers, we got up early, got fresh cinnamon rolls from Lola, along with some fresh bread. Lola is a real sweetheart, and we enjoy every chance we get to talk to her.

After breakfast we decided to spend the day at Hope Town. We left around noon (well, we WERE moving a little slowly, but we were on vacation!), and had a great lunch at Cap’n Jack’s. Then we did a little shopping at several stores, ending up at Ebb Tide. We hadn’t realized it before, but the owner/operator of Ebb Tide Gift Shop is Debbie Patterson, who along with Captain Plug had taken us to the Full Moon Party. We had a nice visit, and bought a few things, before moving on to the Reef Bar at Hope Town Harbour Lodge.

Quiet day there, but very pretty. The tide was very low, and the reef was exposed more than usual, so we didn’t snorkel. We did see one guy who speared a fish there, then cleaned it on the beach and threw the carcass into the water. (I don’t think you’re supposed to spearfish that close to land). Almost immediately a pretty good-sized dark shape that looked awfully shark-like darted over to the spot where the carcass had landed, then right back to the coral.

We stayed there for a few hours, and then headed back to MOW, where we grilled some of the dolphin we had been given. We got some take-out peas’n’rice, mac-n-cheese, and a salad from Dock n Dine to go along with it. Delicious! We shared the scraps with a black cat that adopted us that week. He had a tiny white spot on the very tip of his tail. We figured he belonged to someone, but he hung around our house the rest of the week. Very friendly.

Tuesday, May 12

Weather report calling for winds to increase to 15-20 on Thursday, but two more calm days before that. This is the day we were going to Peter’s house for lunch. We did a little shopping in MOW first, and then left about noon. It was an easy ride to his house, just north of Tahiti Beach. He has a beautiful view, and very nice landscaping around the house.

Peter had gone out fishing the day before, so he fixed some fresh grouper for us, and we ate on the deck overlooking Lubbers Quarters across the Sea of Abaco. He also makes a very good rum punch. After lunch we rode his cart down the short road to Tahiti Beach, where we looked for shells and just chilled on the beach. The girls were entertained by a HOT guy walking around in a blue cap and blue patterned swimsuit.

After several hours of hard lounging, we mustered up the strength to go back and sit on his deck again, with a cold beverage close by, and we kept up that grueling task until almost sunset, when we returned to MOW, exhausted from our workout.

After a hard day like that, nothing finishes it up quite like a cold slice of Vernon’s Key Lime Pie before bed.

Peter's house & view

Peters Yard

Peter’s House - Lat at Tahiti Beach

Wednesday, May 13

We hung around til lunchtime, and then decided to go snorkeling at Fowl Cay, since it was the last calm day predicted. We tied up to a mooring ball at The Tunnels, and snorkeled there for an hour or so. The water felt great without wetsuits, and we saw lots of good stuff. I have already posted photos from there.

Then we went to the middle island in the Fowl Cay chain, called (poetically) “Cay with low fall” in the Cruisers Guide. There is a nice deck built there, with a roof of palm fronds, and a variety of stuff there to grill food and have a nice outing. People have even stashed folding chairs and lamp oil there.

All around the shelter are tons of hermit crabs, who clearly use the deck as their own shelter. Lord knows how many are underneath it, but we saw a lot of them coming and going. We explored the beaches there, and Debby snorkeled in the shallows, where she saw quite a few small fish and corals.

We returned to MOW and waded the sandbank there, before eating another good dinner at the Dock n Dine.

Queen Conch shell - Fowl Cay shelter

Thursday, May 14

As predicted, the winds increased overnight to about 15-20 out of the ESE. We love to listen to the eerie howl of the wind in the rigging of the sailboats moored in the harbor. Even with the increased winds, the Sea of Abaco was not too choppy to get out, so we headed up to Grabbers about midday.

We took it a little slower and hugged the shoreline to stay in the lee of the islands, and got to Guana about 1:00. The settlement harbor was almost empty, because it is fairly exposed to an ESE wind, and most of the boats had moved to Fisher’s Bay. We tied up at the public dock and turned left at the end of the dock.

It was a quiet day at Grabbers, with a few people at the bar, and Jimmy and his wife hanging out there, too. Troy was tending bar that day, and as we watched them we remarked how nice it would be to go to work everyday dressed like they were, and have as much fun as they did.

Jimmy was clowning around at the pool, trying to get onto an inflatable Walrus float, without falling off. He was rather unsuccessful, as the photos show. Later, when Debby and Lisa did it easily, he cannonballed them, and turned them over in the pool.

We had a good lunch there, drank a few Kaliks, and talked to a couple from California that we had met the previous day at Tahiti Beach. Lisa and I competed against each other in the ring & hook game, calling it a draw in the end. We have the same competition every year, and last year she kicked my butt.

We bought some T-shirts in the store, then accepted an invitation to play bocce ball against a couple of guys from Colorado. We had never played before, and after we got embarrassingly behind in the score, we learned that one of the guys has a bocce ball court in his yard at home. We lost, but had fun playing.

We went back to MOW that evening and grilled the rest of the dolphin, then read and talked til bedtime. This was Lisa’s last day in Abaco, so she had to pack, and we had to get up early the next day to take her over to Marsh Harbour.

Jimmy of Grabbers

Friday, May 15

We got up at 6:15 and got ready to take Lisa to Marsh Harbour for her 10:35 departure. With the wind still ESE 15-20, we knew we’d have a longer trip than usual. It was a little sloppy between Garden Cay and Matt Lowe’s Cay, but once there we hugged the shoreline and had a pretty smooth ride.

We dropped Lisa off at Curlytails, where we had planned to have breakfast, but they are no longer serving breakfast there. Neither is the Conch Inn, so we went to three different fuel docks to top off our tank. None were open til 9:00 or 9:30, so we tied up at the dock and walked around to see if we could find something to eat.

We ended up getting breakfast sandwiches at Matilda’s Snack Shop, which were very good. By the time we ate and walked back, the marina office was open, and they directed us to the gas pump next to Blue Wave Rentals, beside Mangoes Restaurant. We filled up there for $4.05 per gallon (cash), which was less than we had paid earlier in the week at MOW Marina.

I really like the Evinrude 115 on our Waterways rental boat. It’s an 18.5 foot Albury Brothers boat, so it has a great ride, and the fuel economy on that motor is extremely good. In two weeks there we spent less than $200 on fuel. Jay and Samantha maintain their boats in superb condition, and we really like doing business with them.

Back on MOW, we went to buy another bag from the Sail Shop, and we learned that the cat that had adopted us all week belongs to Annie, the owner of the shop. We took a walk on the beach during a brief power outage, then decided to have one last meal at Cracker P’s, since we were leaving the next day. The ride there was pretty easy, and we enjoyed talking to some people from NC and Annapolis while we ate.

When we returned to MOW, we sat on the deck drinking the last of our Kaliks, and watched a beautiful blue motor cruiser tie up to a mooring ball in front of our dock. The boat must have been too heavy, though, because it looked like it was dragging the mooring, and they soon untied and left MOW.

We had our last dinner at the Dock n Dine, which is a very nice place to eat. When we walked in we saw Sammie Albury eating with Jay Sands, who is his son-in-law, and another guy, who we learned was his wife’s brother, Jeff Key. Jeff drives a taxi in Marsh Harbour, so we arranged to have him take us to the airport the next morning.

We thanked Sammie for the dolphin he had given us, and told him how much we had enjoyed it. He said since we were leaving the next day, he wanted to give us some more to take home with us. While we ate dinner, he went home, wrapped up two big bundles of dolphin, and brought it to us, along with extra newspaper to wrap it in the next day. He said that would keep it frozen in our cooler without ice. What a nice guy he is!

We finally went back and packed for our departure on the 8:00 ferry the next day.

Departure Day - Saturday, May 16

Our caretaker met us at 7:45 and took us and our luggage to the ferry dock on MOW. We said our goodbyes to him and his family, some of whom were also on the 8:00 to Marsh Harbour. In fact, there were quite a few people we've gotten to know that were making that trip, including Jeff Key, our taxi driver.

Jeff took us to the airport, where we took our place in the BahamasAir line. We were talking to the guy ahead of us, who had helped a friend sail over from Florida a week before. There were two doctors in their group, and he said they had to delay their trip by a week, because one of the doctors had caught the swine flu from a patient! When he said those words, everyone in earshot looked at him and took two steps away!

He assured us that the doctor had no longer been contagious, and the rest of their party had taken a regimen of Tamiflu, just in case, but it was funny seeing everyone react together.

The flights were uneventful, and we were able to catch an earlier USAir flight to Charlotte, avoiding a long layover in West Palm.

This was a wonderful vacation, as all our Abaco trips have been. In two weeks we had maybe two minutes of rain, both in the middle of the night, and every day was sunny, with highs in the low 80's. Winds were calm until the last two days, and even then it was only a little choppy.

We did some new things, visiting Pelican Cay and attending the Full Moon Party, and we met lots of fun people. We did not get to see Pat and Sidney, as we had hoped to, but we'll catch them next time, I hope. Hope to meet some of you when we're there next May.

- Lat & Debby