Arrive Fort Lauderdale, Florida

After about a month’s cruise, and twelve hundred miles later, we arrived at Bahia Mar Yacht Basin, and pulled in to our reserved slip. The whole trip was fabulous, with many fresh fish dinners along the way.

At one of the restaurants, a couple that had been following Aubrey Graves’ columns in The Washington Post, recognized us. They were excited to meet us because they had wanted to do exactly what we were doing. We invited them aboard and had a delightful evening together. I hope they pursued chartering—they would have made a great team.

You might think taking the Inland Waterway would be boring—hey no way. It was a great adventure, though we didn’t get in much sailing…only a bit on Albemarle and Pamlico Sounds. Then, down the “ditch”, as they say.

We called Leon to let him know we had arrived, and were told that Aubrey would join us in about three weeks. He wanted to accompany us on a visit to the Bahamas. Aubrey particularly wanted to visit Great Whale Cay and get an interview with the owner of the island, Mariam Carstairs, an heiress to the Carstairs liquor empire. (He got his interview!)

I decided this would be a good time to get my license to operate a charter boat.

George and his wife, Marie, sailed professionally, chartering boats in the Bahamas, then in the Virgin Islands. They then leased an uninhabited island, Little Thatch, in the British Virgin Islands, and turned it into a small hotel. After six years, they left the island and bought a lovely beachfront property on Jost Van Dyke (BVI) where they built Sandcastle Hotel and the original Soggy Dollar Bar. George is now the author of Incredible Virgin Island Adventure: A True Story.

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