the journey


Family time in the Caribe

January 8-15, 2011

Location: Bonaire, ABC's of the Caribbean

To celebrate the holidays and our last year journeying on DK, we decided to pull off a family gathering in the Caribbean. After some struggle looking at dates that would work, a safe place to tie up the boat, and an island that offered a bit of everything, Bonaire fit the bill.

Nicole and I sailed in on the night of the 6th from our painless 2 1/2 day passage from Grenada, and spent the next day getting checked into Bonaire and putting DK to rest in the marina. My family: parent's Skip and Judy, sister, Gia, her husband, Justin, and nephew, Tobin, rolled in early the next morning on the 8th. Nic's folks, Bob and Michelle, had a bit more of an adventure with a botched flight and missing luggage, but did manage to finally roll in late that night (the luggage fortunately caught up a couple of days later).

And then the fun whirlwind week flashed by. Staying in a beautiful beachside house and having some vehicles at our disposal, we mixed some quality catch-up time together with daily doses of pool buffoonery, snorkeling, kitesurfing and windsurfing. The nights found us either in town sampling one of the very good local restaurants (our favorite being Cactus Blue) or mixing up a feast at the beachhouse for the whole crew.

The wildlife of Bonaire did not disappoint with flamingo's in the estuaries, pelicans and frigates diving for breakfast in front of the beachhouse, hundreds of dragonflies buzzing the patio and iguanas soaking up the sunshine. We swam with parrotfish, were escorted by a pod of dolphins on a snorkel trip, and were constantly visited underwater by the silly spotted boxfish.

There were, of course, many memorable moments, but one of the most special was my dad's 70th birthday. The weather cooperated perfectly allowing him to strap a windsurf board to his feet and rip it up for hours in the beautiful Lac Bay while we all toasted him with our tasty pina colada's at the Jibe City cafe. He was stoked! A tasty dinner where the old-young man got to eat shrimp (his favorite) and fresh key lime pie for dessert in the tropical evening breeze with the whole familia, marked a pretty sweet 70! Happy birthday Skipper!

And before we all knew it, a week had flown by. Off and away back to chilly San Francisco and Seattle they all went with the next full family gathering hopefully happening on the Golden Gate Bridge when we sail back into San Francisco Bay in June!

Without further ado....enjoy the images

Kickin' it at the beachhouse:

A few photo shoots:

Jibe City and the windsurfing beach of Lac Bay:

At the Kitesurf beach:

Out on the town:

Thanks so much to both our families for making this trip a special one!