Note: Day 6 posting got lost in the shuffle. If you are interested in the notes of the approach, etc., it has been re-posted in the correct order, the page previous to this one.
Location: St. George’s harbor, Bermuda.
It’s catch-up day competing with exploration urges. Bob is trying to manage the delivery of badly needed satellite comm hardware, as the firmware fix was unsuccessful. Shar is investigating why our phones won’t work. And we’re all processing email. And we all really want to get off the boat and see Bermuda.
Getting off the boat requires a bit of grace. With Med mooring, there’s a ramp from the swim step to the sea wall, called a passerelle, which is French pirate for ‘plank’. At high tide, it’s just a matter of ignoring the fact that a misstep will put you in the drink. At low tide, however, it’s a feat, as the ramp incline can be pretty steep. Here’s Jason showing how it’s done.
No squirrelly plank was gonna deter us from our town visit, so off we went: Jason, Shar & Peter. Bob claimed he needed to stay behind to work on the reluctant satellite comm system, but it might have been the passerelle.
We got a taste of both St. George’s, our port, and Hamilton, the main town on the island. My preference is the former, as it’s not as touristy or busy, and has more history, as it was the original settlement. Here’s the short story. In 1609, nine supply ships led by Sir George Somers were enroute to ‘the colonies’, Jamestown, to be exact, when George’s boat got separated from the fleet in a storm. They shipwrecked on this here uninhabited island (except for some pigs, which must have been left by some earlier visitor). More precisely, the ship was deliberately driven onto the reef to prevent its sinking, thereby saving all aboard (150 sailors, settlers, and one dog). They built two replacement boats to escape 10 months later, with most of the crew.
Hamilton is a busy little city, home to this iteration of the America’s Cup Race. Races start on Friday, so things are abuzz with more visitors and activity than usual (there’s a cruise ship terminal smack in the center of the downtown waterfront and multiple 737s at the airport, which we passed enroute on the local bus). We spent our afternoon wandering, mostly along the waterfront and around downtown. Here’s the Royal Bermuda Yacht Club:
My first blush, overall impression is that Bermuda is a happy place, with a good sense of self. People are warm and friendly to each other; almost all interactions are preceded with, “Good morning! How are you?” It’s English in custom (driving on the left, for instance) but with a good mix of Caribbean and African culture that brews up its own result (oft seen business attire: oxfords, black knee socks, shorts, dress shirt & tie). This alley way says a bit about the place, too: