Thursday, May 25th, 2006
Bequia is part of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and is well known with yachts as they stop here frequently before or after an Atlantic crossing; or even just as a stop. Bequia is beautiful and laid back with distant sounds of calypso drums and reggae music no matter where you are on the island. Pretty white beaches surround a surprisingly hilly island. Bequia also has a fascinating history with whaling, and to this day are part of an international exception allowing the islanders to engage in limited whaling. They use sailing/pulling boats almost identical to the whale boats that hang from the Charles W. Morgan at Mystic Seaport. Generally they don’t kill one every year, maybe every three or four years.
One of the nicest things about Bequia is that really there isn’t much to do but enjoy the company you are with and relax—go for a swim, go diving, read a book, or enjoy a long drawn-out lunch. Maybe you go to the dock and dangle your feet in the water and watch the fish dart about, sit on the beach, go snorkeling. Maybe you just find a comfy chair and a cool drink at the Frangipani and watch the world of Bequia go by slowly.
There is no need to rush about trying to do the 10 things on your sight-seeing list, because there isn’t much sight-seeing. An Island tour is nice to do, the whaling museum is very interesting, but it is only a small island and you can do these things in a morning! In the meantime, put up your feet and take a nap. The Captain sailed the old Pride of Baltimore to Bequia years ago; put out a stern anchor and nudged the bow right up on the beach just like the old inter-island schooners they built and sailed here. There is one such schooner left—the Friendship Rose. Now making long day sails, this 80-foot schooner was once the only island ferry and so the only way to get goods to Bequia. Now there is a small airport and a few Norwegian motor vessels keep busy going back and forth.
There is lots of talk aboard of coming back for next winter’s Caribbean cruising, which will be tons of great sailing and fun ashore!
It’s easy to see why you would never want to leave Bequia. Life here is languid and leisurely. No hurry, no rush. Just be careful not to expect things to happen quickly: it can take an hour and half to get your grilled cheese sandwich. So make sure you shift your mind from full speed ahead to “whenever.”