LEEWARD ISLANDS March - Aprill 2012

In the Caribbean for the second time, we were looking forward to have visitors form Norway on board. Shortly after our arrival in Martinique Peder (Eivind's son) and Heidi's parents signed on. After celebrating Peders birthday together with young and "old" sailing friends in Martinique we headed north to Dominica and the group of islands called Leeward Islands.

After one of our hikes in Dominica we stopped at a banana plantation on our way back to the boat. The boys working there enjoyed showing us around among bananas and other fruits. They even digged up some ginger roots to us. They told us the secret of how to reach to 100: A minimun of one cup of ginger tea a day - without sugar or milk...
Dominica is known for its beautiful and lush nature. Together with the Danish Exabyte crew we rented a minibus and explored the island. We longed for the mountains and the jungle. Also sailor bodies need land excercice.
Grandfather was busy entertainig three kids. Grandmother sunbathing on deck. Peder had fun celebrating his 10th birthday in Martinique - on board Empire.
In Dominica's jungle we enjoyed great hiking together with grandparents and the crew from the Danish yacht Exabyte. Bucket bath with a view.
"Faster Paps!" Hans 80 years old (nr 2 from left) sailed his boat Trekkfuglen singlehanded and told us about his adventure when we met him in Dominica.
The Bight, Norman Island, BVI. The motorboats were a group from Puerto Rico on their traditional Easter "fishing tour". Kresten and Eirik in ”The Exabyte Swing” - better than tivoli! Eirik is soon ready for his first padle oar.
Peder rediscovered his favorite place from the time he was 5 and crossed the Pacific with "Empire". ”Pirates of the Caribbean”... Card games with the boys, Eirik and Marius appreciate having big brother Peder on board.
Marius' goal is to get past or over all "child protectors" in the boat - and he is doing good! We trust the safety harness to keep him on board and to protect from nasty falls...
When we met all the Norwegain yachts in Road Town, Eirik barely had time to say "hello" before playing with the (Norwegian) kids! For once Marius (1 1/2) was not the youngest sailor around, when we met Klara (10months) and her parents in s/y Honningpupp.
Several times we thought we saw each other for the "last time". Kirsten's birthday was
celebrated twice - both before and on the Day, since we happened to meet again...
Marius and Eirik liked to visit aunt Kirsten and uncle Jens from the Danish boat Exabyte. Mum and Dad even got some hours off now and then...

Conrad (80) on Peter Island is blind but was taken good care of by the employees at the resort on the island

Eirik (3) can actually drive the dingy in the direction we want him too - Marius (1½) is still training hard. When they don't fight over the stearing position you will find them in the bow.
Marius and Eirik doesn't swim on their own yet - sometimes they think they do.
No doubt that they enjoy swiming!
We will miss all the colourful fruit and vegetables stalls in the tropics. Big Sailor Eirik enjoy beeing the little helper. Last swim at St. John, USVI - before heading toward colder water.
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