R&R to Tortola, 12/00

     Our trip began by flying to Miami and subsequently arriving late in San Juan, Puerto Rico.  We intentionally made the first stop in San Juan so Steve could take his final test (Microsoft Exchange Server 5.5) to earn a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer certification.  He passed, which helped to make the time in Tortola more enjoyable since the thought of rescheduling the test wasn't weighing on his mind.  The testing center was five blocks from our hotel, so he just walked to the appointment noticing along the way that in San Juan, people actually use the sidewalk for walking, and the street for driving, not the other way round. :-)

     We ate lunch across the street at Chili's, then sat in the hotel bar from which we could enjoy the ocean and drank coffee and tea while waiting for our late departure for Tortola.

View from our hotel room in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
A beach on the Atlantic ocean is on the opposite side of the hotel.

     We were delivered from the airport at Tortola to Sebastian's On The Beach by the same taxi driver who drove us there six years ago.

View from our room at Sebastian's On The Beach

The island you see is Jost Van Dyke.  The winter Jimmy Buffett spent on a boat there inspired him to write Maņana.

Carrot Bay

Little Apple Bay, Capoons Bay, and Long Bay

Sebastian's is on Little Apple Bay.

The mountain on the right in the distance is part of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.

Soper's Hole

That's St. John in the distance.

Steve got his hair beaded in Christmas colors.  It's the islands mon.
...and yes, he went to work like that.

     We took a day sail on the White Squall II from Road Harbor (background) where Jimmy Buffett wrote Cheeseburger In Paradise.  Steve (the one with the new, silly, tourist hat) was nauseated before the trip started, and the feeling was exacerbated by the diesel fumes from the motor.  Also, the excursion was more of a tourist trip than actual sailing.  Nevertheless, we both enjoyed the ride.  The crew seemed to enjoy serving and entertaining us.

A rainbow arcs across Tortola.

Across the Sir Francis Drake Channel almost to Norman Island are protruding rocks called The Indians.  The snorkeling is decent here.

Steve snorkeling at The Indians.

The first mate guiding the captain to the mooring at Norman Island. White Squall II

Willy T's (William Thornton's) Grog & Grub at Norman Island.  A fine lunch of fresh seafood was included in our day sail package.

Norman Island is the island that inspired Robert Louis Stevenson to write Treasure Island.  Treasure has in fact been found here even recently, and there is supposedly more that is still hidden.

Jumping from the top of Willy T's can earn you a T-shirt or drink.

Captain Chris and his brother Jeff.  Coincidentally, Jeff does the same job that Steve does except Jeff works for the Canadian foreign service.  It's a small world after all.

Steve chose a hazy day to try to get a top-level view of the surrounding islands.  This is Cane Garden Bay from which Jimmy Buffett could see the lights of St. Thomas and General Electric still doing their best (Maņana).

Even hazy days are beautiful in the Virgin Islands.  This 4-masted schooner is heading for the safety of the harbor at Jost Van Dyke.  Click on the picture for a larger version.  The shots were taken from our balcony at Sebastian's.