My older brother Steve and his wife Linda have been our biggest fans since the beginning of our cruising life.  They have faithfully followed our adventures with great interest and some degree of envy over the years.  They visited us in St. Thomas over Christmas last year and couldn’t wait to see us down island in Grenada, even though it’s the middle of hurricane season!

As the odds would have it, their trip down was on its way to being thwarted by Tropical Storm Maria which was predicted to pass over San Juan, Puerto Rico just as they were scheduled to change planes there.  But the wind gods were merciful and the storm lightened up and headed north of the island just in time.  Their plane arrived safely in Grenada and was even on time!

Although they were only able to stay for a few days we enjoyed some great times, sharing our little piece of paradise with them both onboard Sanctuary and exploring the beautiful island country of Grenada. Today we enjoyed an all day island tour with a local gentleman named Clemente Baptiste, who in his past life was a security guard and driver for then Prime Minister Maurice Bishop when the Soviets decided to move in and take over in 1983.  His recollections of the events leading up to the US invasion provided a unique perspective and some insights into why many citizens here hold the United States in such high regard to this day.  Thank you, President Reagan!

Our tour visited the island’s Nutmeg process factory, a rum distillery powered by a giant water wheel, the island’s chocolate factory, and one of many waterfalls.  Grenada’s chocolate is the most potent we’ve ever tasted, containing 70% cocoa.  The islands hillsides are lush and green from the extra rainfall during this time of year and we had a great time in the company of other cruisers who came along.

The next day we ventured into downtown on one of the local “buses”, actually a 15-passenger van employed by the island to provide inexpensive and highly reliable public transportation.  We did some good old-fashion shopping and had lunch at a real local hangout Carrie and I recently discovered.  The menu there is not extensive but the home-style cooking and warm atmosphere that the locals enjoy were both a real treat for all of us.  A much better alternative than the KFC down the street.

Before we knew it their time was up and they boarded a plane back to reality, but not before we logged some excellent memories and shared good times with our family and many friends here.  The accomodations aboard Sanctuary are a bit cozy for 5 (counting Spike) but if you’re in the neighborhood we’d love to have you.  As the saying goes, “We’ll leave a light on for ya!”

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