Sunday, September 21, 2014

Star Lit Nights

It was a dark and stormy night...okay it was a warm morning as the sun peaked over the horizon, finally breaking the clouds as we were off.  The Ecologic Retreat was underway, and our sails were filled by 6:15 am.  No idea what it is about sailing that captures me so; the waves, wind, silence.  I can honestly say only a mountain peak can compete.  Either place I feel like I could sit until I simply faded from oddly comforting thing.  Don't read me wrong, I love existing!  However to feel small, know that you are ultimately inconsequential...humility is powerful and centering feeling.

Soldier's Caye
Our destination - Goff's Caye (pronounced "key" for you main land Americans), an island the size of Chili's - but without the yummy food; no power, no services, no people. A 4 hour sail away outside the reef, which would be our chosen path in the amazing weather ahead of us - though we would need to be quick as storms were forecast for the afternoon.  As we passed St. George's Caye we could see an enormous cruise ship in the hazy distance parked in Belize City - which equaled hordes of tourists on our quiet paradise.  We made the decision to chance the weather and stop on a postage stamp sized island known as Soldier's Caye. We spent a few hours snorkeling and a bit of nervous time watching three water spouts in the distance - basically tornadoes over the water.
Impromptu from Soldeir's Caye

WATER SPOUT!!  Much more pronounced in real life - look just over the island.

15 minute old sushi
As mid-afternoon approached we pulled anchor, threw our lines back in the water and continued the voyage to Goff's.  Afternoon snack was served up in the form of a tuna that decided to bite the lure - 15 minutes from ocean to sushi in the belly...yummy.  We pulled up to Goff's Caye well after the tourists had gone; only a couple vendors cleaning up and preparing for their trips home.  Enough time to get in some snorkeling and island sitting before dinner!\

The next days are a blurry mess of snorkeling, relaxing, and searching for treasure (I spent a lot of time combing the shallows for lost tourist loot - found none).  Some of the highlights - tons of rays (one horseshoe ray that was bigger than a Fiat), learning that in shallow water sand reflects sun like the snow on a ski slope (turned me 'kinda' red), taking three naps in one day on a tiny un-inhabited island, spotted eagle rays, flounder, stars...I can't describe the stars.  If you've never been far beyond the reach of light pollution, with nothing electric to hum, then you can't possibly imagine the soul feeding ecstasy that is a silent, clear, unspoiled star lit night. The boat holds you close, rocking you gently.  The waves kiss the hulls, whispering sweet nothingness as the pass.

Goff's Caye - from sand bar

One night we saw an amazing lightening show about 20 miles south.  One morning we got hit with a huge storm - we couldn't see more than 50 yards and given the water spouts the day prior we had a few nervous moments thinking about what may come out of the dark.  Nothing did.

The journey back was an all day affair.  We traveled inside the reef, and along the back side of the islands.  Stopping in Caye Caulker for a bit of lunch, catching two barracuda and two red snapper on the way home (those 'cuda can put up a fight - I got to reel them in!).  Dolphins did grace us every so briefly with their presence.  One jump, a lot of distant breaches - but we didn't get to ride one.

Video will be uploaded on my FB in the "near" future as a share from Ecologic Company's YouTube channel.  I know the photo quality is poor...thought the GoPro would be sufficient, but it really isn't a camera at all - and failed epically at night (thus no star shots...which my 41 MP beast would've rocked out...very sorry I didn't bring it, guess I'll have to go back).  I miss you all.

1 comment:

  1. Wish I could have been along this year. Glad you enjoyed the sail.