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September 15, 2002
Cary and Keri's Last Day

It was Cary and Keri's last day with us before their early morning flight out the next day. As we sailed down the rougher, windward side of Tobago, we put a fishing line out, but didn't get so much as a nibble. It was a long, hot trip and it wasn't long before Keri got the idea in her head she'd try to cool down: by hanging out on our boat's transom (the back side of the boat that has steps down into the water). Now- we will use the transom underway when Curt's cleaning fish- so we don't get blood and guts all over the cockpit, but we don't really hang-out back there for the sheer fun of it. If you fall off, or a big swell knocks you off, it could be pretty dangerous trying to get you back. Curt rolls with the punches much better than I do, so he just laughed as she laid down and clung to the back of the boat- but me? I couldn't even look. I merely just asked that she at least hold onto a line or something. So there Keri sat: lubing up with sunscreen so thick her face was pure white and having a bit of a jacuzzi in Force Five's wake. It wasn't until Cary got seasick and was about to barf off the back of the boat on her, that she left her perch!

We had decided to anchor off Pigeon Point, perfect little Caribbean white sand beach surrounded by a huge reef. In the morning we'd meander down to Store Bay where we could walk them to the airport. Of the thirteen cases of wine we bought back in Saint Maarten, we had one bottle left. Curt offered it up for our last evening together, and the four of us hopped in the dinghy and headed over to a mooring to tie up to. It felt like we were bobbing around in the middle of the sea. Curt and I couldn't have planned their last night any better. The sun set as we were polishing up the wine and we got to see the infamous and illusive green flash! With that, we each wrote a note from scraps of paper I had in my backpack, popped them into the wine bottle, corked it… and sent it off to sea. By now, the sun had slipped far past the horizon and it was getting dark. We started to pack it up to head back to Force Five when, from our mooring fifty or so yards away, we watched a huge flock of itty bitty pigeons start circling Force Five. Hundreds of them it seemed! Around and around they'd swoop and then they'd come to rest on our rigging. And off again they'd go around the boat, chirping and making all sorts of noises. It was a surreal scene out of Alfred Hitchcock's, "The Birds." After watching all this excitement for a few minutes, we slowly motored closer to Force Five and, as if things weren't weird enough that night, something was skimming along the water towards us in the dark. Curt thought it was a flying fish and started hollering to get the camera! It was going to skip right into our boat! As it got closer, my stomach turned as we realized it was one of the little birds that must've gotten caught in our wind generator. It had hurt it's wing. Back on the boat, we had a quiet evening to leave them well rested for their long trip home the next day.

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