My neighbours, who had at first been quite close but had re-anchored during the night, disappeared rather quickly in the morning and since I've already been hit-and-run by other boats on the previous Zanshin. I took a quick dinghy around the boat to check for scratches and dents but found none so I'm a bit chastised now for my unbecoming suspicions. The winds are very calm here in the anchorage but the morning's weather report on the VHF network indicated 15-20 knots of breeze today and stronger winds in the next couple of days, so I think I will safely take the island of Saba off my list for the present considering the anchorage there is wide open and known to be less than comfortable in any kind of seas. I have never been to Anguilla and have heard conflicting reports of how cheap it is to clear in and how hideously expensive it is to clear in. It seems that entering and remaining in Road Bay is cheap, while going to any other place on the island by boat is expensive. I'll check with some of the other cruisers later today to see what it really is like and whether it is worth visiting for a day or two.
I've set out the last of my bread to rise, but I think that the yeast in there is no longer active and cannot be revived. I'll give it an hour and if nothing happens I'll throw it into the oven anyway since I am quite hungry this morning and there's little (well, nothing) else to eat that is fresh and somehow making pasta with tomato sauce doesn't cut it for breakfast.
I wish to go shopping, but it is a long way from here by bus and weighing anchor and re-anchoring in Marigot is the only option, but then I've got that long dinghy trip to Budget Marine - unless Mau is there and I can cadge a lift from them in their big and powerful 18HP Caribe. In fact I'll try to reach them on the VHF now... darn, no answer. I'll try again later. I have been writing down my electrical readings at various times of the day and before/after charging for the past 10 days so that I can get an idea of my real energy consumption and required sizing for the solar panels that I would like to order. Currently my daily energy consumption is about 100Ah (at 24V, equivalent to 200Ah @ 12V). While the majority of power consumed is by the two refrigeration units, I still think that my energy use is rather high. I've been aboard a lot and have been using the notebook with LED display I've had the inverter running much of the time which accounts for another big chunk of energy. But there is still a big usage which surprises me since all my lights are LED and I only run the dive tank compressor or watermaker while the generator is turned on so they don't account for any energy use at all. The high energy use is borderline bothersome for me; right now I'm not interested in tracking down every last erg but if the use remains high then I will make the effort some time in the future.
The rough formula used for solar panels is to take their rated Wattage and assume that they run at 100% for a good 6 hours per day. That would mean if I get 2 x 140W panels for 280W that would work out to 6h x 280W = 1680Wh / 24V = 70A per day. With a deficit of 30A per day from solar and 50% usable capacity in the bank I would only need to run the generator 240Ah / 30Ah = 71 hours = ~3 days. This would fit in well with my water consumption, since at present I run the generator 1 hour at a time and fire up the watermaker at the same time, but the 6 minute freshwater flush at the end of the hour eats up a significant percentage of the freshwater made in the preceding 60 minutes, so the run cycle for the watermaker should ideally be longer and a 2-hour generator run every 3 days sounds acceptable to me.
I spent a couple of hours working on updating the site's pages, particularly the modifications section and then motored downwind to Marigot, where there was a low tide and I was worried about entering the area where I usually anchor due to shallow water and I ended up anchoring rather far outside (amidst the big yachts) which, as it turns out, isn't as protected and prone to swell. I finished anchoring at 15:00 and got into the dinghy to go the long way across the lagoon to purchase my female DB9 connector and because of my engine mounts it took a long time - one hour, in fact. I am glad that I filled up the gas tank prior to starting that trip! When I made it Electec I was quite disappointed to find that the only empty hook on the wall rack in the connector section was for female DB9 and they had no adapters, either. I ended up buying a replacement impeller and some water filters for the watermaker but the important purchase is still outstanding. I barely made it to the Simpson Bay Yacht Club for the 17:00 bridge opening where I'd loosely agreed to meet Carmen and Bernd and we watched just a couple of boats go through, but 4 of those counted as just 1 since 3 dinghies were working to tow a partially submerged powerboat (with 2 x 350HP outboards) back inside. After the bridge we agreed to meet aboard their boat for a drink and stop at Grand Marché on the way, but since their dinghy is much faster than mine they had to wait a bit for me to make it. I had two beers and then made my long way back to Zanshin where I grilled up the steak I'd just purchased at the supermarket and had that with some toasted bread on BBQ for dinner.

Cleaning windows on Eileen This scene reminded of the old days at gas stations where you'd ask the attendant to clean the windows and check the oil. This window-washing gig is almost a full-time job considering the square footage of windows aboard this yacht.
(2014-02-17 14:10:29 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/11.0, 1/320s] ISO 100)
Cleaning windows on Eileen
Sea Owl with toys Unloading the toys from the garage on Sea Owl. It looks like they haven't cleared into France yet, since the yellow "Q" flag is flying.
(2014-02-17 14:10:33 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/11.0, 1/320s] ISO 100)
Sea Owl with toys
Flooded go-fast This fast powerboat is being pulled into the lagoon and it looks like it flooded quite badly and seemed to still be taking on water.
(2014-02-17 17:01:46 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/14.0, 1/100s] ISO 100)
Flooded go-fast
Towing powerboat Towing a partially submerged go-fast powerboat with 700HP into the lagoon.
(2014-02-17 17:02:55 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/14.0, 1/80s] ISO 100)
Towing powerboat
The Round and Illusion entering The Round and Illusion entering the Simpson Bay Lagoon as seen from the Simpson Bay Yacht Club at the 17:00 opening.
(2014-02-17 17:05:26 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/14.0, 1/80s] ISO 100)
The Round and Illusion entering
Sunset at SMYC Sunset at SMYC
(2014-02-17 17:54:08 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/14.0, 1/60s] ISO 100)
Sunset at SMYC
SMYC Terrace The terrace is crowded for the 17:00 bridge opening at the Saint Martin Yacht Club.
(2014-02-17 17:54:36 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/400s] ISO 100)
SMYC Terrace
Carmen preparing bread dough Carmen making a batch of dough aboard Mau as Bernd and I enjoy a post-sunset Carib beer.
(2014-02-17 19:26:05 NIKON D7100 with a "18.0-250.0 mm f/3.5-6.3" lens. [f/6.3, 1/60s] ISO 100)
Carmen preparing bread dough
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